[Request] Ideas for multi organization task management

I love the power behind coda tables, but I have a hard time figuring out the best way to handle our organizations task management processes. Let’s hope that some of you have ideas of how to solve this.

Background

  • We run an organization with multiple levels (one for each city and one mother organization country wide).
  • Each local organization has an almost identical set of tasks for normal operations. Their main objective is to run the organization and help their members grow.
  • At a local level, we have a set of tasks that are recurring every year (for operations). We also have single tasks that needs to be done one time (for a project)
  • We change board roles each year. Hence the need for standardized tasks, set dates, good best practices and links to wiki articles and templates for recurring projects and bigger tasks.
  • The national organization are there to tie it all together and to support the local organizations. Like this task management and wiki system we want to implement.

Our main goal
At the national level we want to be able to help the local organizations with a yearly standardized list of recurring tasks, templates for often used projects (like running an event or training) and be able to maintain and improve such templates and recurring tasks from one single spot.

Ideally this means…

  • one single set of recurring task list for local organizations, but separate tasks for each organization to check status, comment, set assignees and so on.
  • templates for much used projects and bigger tasks with subtasks (like arranging a training event)
  • also allowing adding smaller to do items in the task list
  • ability to maintain the list of recurring tasks as well as the templates for projects/bigger tasks from the national level
  • ability to only allow the local organization to see their recurring tasks, projects and adhoc tasks.
  • simple how-to for each recurring task (notes field with check boxes and linkes to wiki articles could work)

I’m pretty sure that much of this can be done in some way with the lookup functionality and forumulas. Any ideas would be very appreciated!

1 Like

Hi @Carl_Haugen
and welcome to Coda Community! :handshake:

I’m happy you understood the power behind data modelling and data interaction in Coda and indeed there are some best practices.
For task templating, you might have a look at (but there are many):

However, you are asking how to structure quite a complex application and perhaps it would be better to understand the overall implications and requirements from the actual use-cases perspective.
Data modelling, data segregation, audiences (type of users), views and interaction, subpages and/or cross-doc, data quantity, …

If this is something you aim at building on your own, my suggestion would be to start doing it with a step-wise approach of use cases: templating, automations, local and global views, etc…

Otherwise, if you need a more structured design and help, you might ask for a Coda expert @Connor_McCormick , @Paul_Danyliuk , @joost_mineur, @Christiaan_Huizer, @lars_hofstetter_10TIMES_io among the others in the community, including myself: feel free to ask, in case.

Cheers!
federico

3 Likes

Thanks for the advice, Federico. I looked through the links you mentioned, and a few others through the community search. I can easily see the power behind the functions you can create here, and I can certainly use that to achieve some of what I need. But I kind of hoped that if could be done more easily with UI components. That way it would be easier for others to customize and adapt as well.

I work in a national organization, and we want to support our 10 local (city) organization by providing easy templates or best practices for them. It’s just the board members that needs access to coda for now. Perhaps the regular members just need view access to our wiki.

We in the national board wants to have control of the templates and task lists. Each local organization should ideally be locked to their own dashboard with their own task lists. And the national organization should have a broader access to be able to have a overview and help out where needed. We all need a common wiki for static information.

I’ll give you two examples that is the majority of what we need.

Repeated yearly tasks

  • Each local organization has about 40 tasks through each year.
  • The tasks are identical for each organization
  • Many of the dates are the same each year, and those that are not are close each year.
  • We want to provide a best practice for each of those tasks. A simple document, a check list or link to a bigger wiki guide. Or a combination of several things. This could be done with a note field I think.

We could manually add that list of tasks each year, but we would love to have just one set of list of task (40 tasks). That way it would be much easier to edit and improve one task, than editing a best practice for the same task in 10 organizations task lists.

So, if we could have one master data list of tasks, and each organization has it’s own copy or linked tasks for those tasks, that would be ideal. In worst case we would have to have one master data table with the 40 tasks, and copy the tasks to the 10 different organizations. That would mean that changes most likely are done just once a year.

Repeated projects and bigger tasks

  • Tasks that are held once or several times a year. Date and frequency can very for each organization. Example can be to arrange a training event, or hold a yearly project with several tasks and steps that are repeated the same way each year.
  • Those tasks should consist of several sub tasks (or as a project with several tasks).
  • Each task/sub task should have a best practice/task list etc. (in a notes field or similar). Notes field can be placed in a separate relational table, for easier editing for all the local organizations.
  • Both assignee and dates can also be set manually, but it would be perfect if…
  • Ideally the tasks should be assigned automatically to people of a certain board role (president, administrator, marketing etc).
  • The date should ideally be one manually set initial date, and then all dates added to each individual task should have a set number of days offset. Like initial task date +5 days, +10 days, +12 days for the next task and so on.
  • The really important part is that all of those tasks should be in a single template, and the tasks to be added to the local organizations main task list. I hope that the new template function can be used for this.

I hope this clarifies the need. I don’t expect all of it to be solved easily, or at all. But if most of it could be done, it would save us a ton of problems. Thanks for your time!

Hi @Carl_Haugen,
thanks for the further insight of your application.
I believe that most - in not all - of those features can be accomplished with some work in Coda.

What is still not clear to me is what you intend with “UI components”.
While Coda offers a great flexibility and a wide variety of pre-defined and custom templates, you basically have to build up your application according with your domain and use cases.

Meaning that you still have to define your data model under the hood and build up specific views for the user interactions, along with actions and automations.

I’d be happy to have a chat with you in order to better clarify strengths and boundaries of working with Coda, if you like.
Feel free to contact me in DM to set it up.

Cheers!

Thanks, Federico. I appreciate that. I’ll send you a DM.

What I mean with UI elements is basically everything else than pure code. As soon as we start talking about formulas, it complicates things. If people does not have IT knowledge, it’s hard for them to change and add functionality. Things would be a lot easier if it could be done with tables, columns, tags, relational fields and other built in methods that are easy to explain in text and pictures. But that’s obviously not attainable for all our needs :slight_smile: I just hope to minimize the complex functions wherever I can, so others can pick it up again after I’m not involved any more. We can’t guarantee that the admins at our national level will have the same knowledge every year.

HI Carl,

I have just done something relatively similar for a priest. He has certain events/ groups, each of which has a set of associated tasks.

When an event is “registered”, he pushes a button, and that will copy all the related tasks from a task template table to a date driven task list. The dates are defaulted, but there is a column that allows a manual adjustment to the date copied.

The document is published here.

Currently the events are weddings and baptisms. But I have set it up to be generic. So a baptism is a type of event, which has a set of associated tasks. It is easy for somebody that has a little bit of knowledge of CODA so set up a new event type, its associated tasks, and then to create the buttons that will copy the tasks to the task list. There is an identifier for parish, and priest to group and filter on, these can be used as city and task owner, for instance.

Coda has a new functionality that allows the automatic creation of a page for a row.

“Static” help pages in your WIKI could be linked to columns in the event task template, and those columns added automatically to the task list for the users to drill down into.

Feel free to make a copy, or to contact me if you need further explanations. There is a faie amount of explanation in the Coda doca as well.

Regards
P