Create a "defined" task via another task?

We have a project comprised of a number of repeating tasks to coordinate routine maintenance at our organization. Each task has a link/attachment to the associated procedure (typically a google doc), and repeat based on necessary frequency. However, we have a number of tasks that do not have a fixed frequency, but would be initiated by completion of another scheduled task (e.g: check inventory, see inventory is low, create task to refill inventory). These “on-demand” tasks would also need to link to a specific procedure (or may want to have other fields populated). We are currently using Asana Premium. Here are some ideas I have had so far and why they have not worked:

  • Create follow up task: first obvious solution, but does not easily allow for procedure to be included (without manually first finding the procedure and adding the link)
  • Task Templates: great way to make the task you want, but it is difficult to “get to”; we use calendar view by default, and there is no way to add a task template from that view, so you have to switch to list view first; also does not appear to be accessible on mobile
  • Form submission: with only one form per project, my idea would be to add a dropdown menu to select which task needs to be completed; however, the only way I have found to include a hyperlink is to physically paste the link in the dropdown item text, which results in a long, “ugly” response
  • Add a link to “create a task”: based on my reading in the guide/forum, this appears to be impossible
  • Add a link to a “placeholder” task and duplicate it: a lot of steps and easy to mess up

Any feedback or suggestions?

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@Kevin_Owen what if you had a recurring task that represents BOTH tasks (in one) and use Rules to define what step needs to be taken?

Example: You have a task called “Check inventory and refill, if necessary”. This task is recurring every other Monday. The description in the task holds all the links/attachments for the associated procedures along with instructions to complete the task in full. The description first suggest that the assignee check the inventory. Upon doing so they change the Task Status (Custom Field) to either “No refill required” or “Inventory refill required”. Both of these Task Status changes fire a separate action:

  • No refill required >>> Complete task (a new recurring task will be set for the Monday after next)
  • Inventory refill required >>> Change Task Status to “Refill in process”

After the refill is complete, the assignee changes the Task Status to “Inventory refilled” which then fires a rule that completes the task (a new recurring task will be set for the Monday after next). You’ll just want to define the steps to take and procedures to follow based on each Task Status. Also, with each action to complete the task you will want to set the Task Status to the initial Task Status of “Check Inventory” so the newly created recurring task is set appropriately. Would this work for you?

I assume that Task Templates will be something that can be created in the future as a Rule action but perhaps that #productfeedback is something that might need to be suggest. @Marie_OoO is this a suggestion you have seen yet?

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@Jerod_Hillard thanks for the suggestion. Something like this may work. I will have to figure out some “generic” field values, since not every task has the same requirements (e.g. one might be for inventory but another for “extended maintenance” or “make new test devices” or something). Also, there could be cases where completion of the additional task may take longer than the recurrence of the base task…

I think a similar method that may work in the meantime is to include the documentation for all possible tasks in the recurring task, create a follow-up task, and make sure people clearly define which procedure needs to be followed in the title/description of the follow-up. They’ll have to click the link to go back to the original task, but this way might cover a few more use-cases. Mainly I want to avoid implementing “several different ways” to do it since in all cases we will need to establish the convention and get everyone doing it…

I would definitely like to know if there’s any work being done to expand the Task Templates functionality, or if there’s an existing suggestion that I could upvote.