Automated alerts and reminders ensure that the right people get the right information, at the right time.
Alerts are reactively triggered by changes to your sheet, and notify stakeholders of updates to critical information.
Reminders are proactively triggered by a specific date or time and keep task owners apprised of key deadlines.
Both alerts and reminders can be set up individually or together as part of a larger workflow with multiple conditions. They can also be sent to multiple recipients on a recurring basis, even if the recipient is not shared to your sheet.
Create a Time-Based Automated Workflow
In the trigger block of an automated workflow, you can trigger actions before, after, or on a specific date by specifying a date field (from a date column in your sheet) or manually selecting a date.
- When you manually select a date, the workflow will be triggered at the same time for all of the rows in your sheet that meet the conditions you set. (For example, you can use an alert to remind you to take action on all rows that do not have an Assignee by a specific date.)
- When you select a date field for the workflow, the sheet will check daily for rows that should be included in that day’s workflow. If no rows match that day’s date and time or satisfy the workflow’s conditions, the workflow will not be executed for any rows. Rows that do not have a date will never be included in a date field-based workflow.
- You can also refine the hour of the day your workflow will be triggered. By default it is the top of the next hour from when you begin editing the workflow.
- The trigger’s time zone is always the same as the sheet Owner's time zone.
Trigger Frequent, Change-Based Automations in Batches
In the Run workflow dropdown of the trigger block in your automated workflow, you can adjust whether a change-based workflow should run immediately, or batch up changes and deliver alerts and/or requests hourly, daily, or weekly based on the changes that took place in the given timeframe.
Keep the following in mind as you set the run behavior for your workflow:
- Set your trigger to take place an hour before the action should take place. This will ensure that technical issues don't prevent the action from taking place on time.
- Workflows set to run daily will evaluate changes to the sheet and execute between 12:00 AM and 11:59 PM in the sheet Owner’s timezone and messages will be delivered between 12:00 AM and 4:00 AM the next day.
- Weekly workflows will run between the first Friday at 12:00 AM and 11:59 PM the following Thursday, and messages will be delivered between 12:00 AM and 4:00 AM on the second Friday.
For example: a weekly alert which was created on Wednesday the 1st would fire the first time on Friday the 3rd. It would contain changes that occurred from the time the workflow was created on the 1st until 11:59 PM on Thursday the 2nd. The following week's alert would be sent on the 10th and would include changes from Friday the 3rd to Thursday the 9th.
- If multiple rows are changed when the sheet is saved within the timeframe of the selected frequency, then the workflow will run for every row that meets the trigger criteria. Recipients of this automation will receive a single notification with up to 100 rows in grid format.
- If placeholders are used in the custom messages of your automation, separate alerts will be generated for each unique custom message. Placeholders cannot be used when the Run workflow: setting is Hourly, Daily, or Weekly. See Dynamically Add Cell Data in the Subject and Body of Request Messages for more information about message placeholders.
- The following actions cannot be used with Run workflow: set to Hourly, Daily, or Weekly, Record a Date, Move Rows, Copy Rows, Lock rows, Unlock Rows, and Approval requests that contain subsequent actions.
Customize the content of your alerts and requests
Ensure Continuous Project Execution With Recurring Automation
You can schedule a recurring workflow to ensure that your workflow runs for the rows that meet your conditions on a regular basis. For example, request daily updates on overdue tasks from the assigned team members.
To create a recurring automated workflow in your sheet:
- Click Automation from the menu and create a new workflow or edit an existing workflow. (See Save Time and Work Faster With Automated Workflows for more information about creating and editing workflows.)
- In the Trigger block of your workflow, select When a date is reached.
- Click Run once > Custom.
- In the Custom Recurrence form, select the desired cadence (daily, weekly, monthly, annually) for your workflows to trigger.
TIP: You can also have your workflow end after a certain date or specific amount of executions.
- Click Done.
That’s it! Your workflow will now execute at the recurrence you specify. To control which rows your workflow will include when it runs, take a look at the Condition Blocks: Filter What Your Automated Workflows Send Help Center article.