Make an relative "@" link when editing templates

Would like to push this feature and created a new topic in this category.

Really want to a feature that allaw to set “relative link” when editing templates!

I believe templates is the one of the most powerful feature of Asana.
The more template feature useful, the more fasinating for users.

I posted an assumption of the UX to the thread.
https://forum.asana.com/t/templates-and-linked-tasks/79/15?u=kenichi

Howdy asanaers!

I use a lot of templates and I like to link tasks in descriptions in order to make my life simpler.

Now, one of the things that I cannot do (r do not know how to do), is to link subtasks in one of the description (for example) and see that those link are moved to the copies/duplicated task’s subtask.

For example I have a task

  • [template]taskname - that in the description has a link to the @[template]subtaskname
    –[template]subtaskname

If I duplicate my template (let’s call it “Copy of [template]taskname”), the link in the new task will still go to the subtask in [template]taskname

Is there any way to define a link as “relative” or “absolute”?
Is there anyone else who uses templates in this way and feel this to be a limitation?

Thanks!
Carlo

3 Likes

This is super insightful, and yes, I do use templates in this way also. I usually go in and manually add in the new link to the subtasks as part of building out the new project once it’s been copied from the template. I definitely understand the time savings and helpfulness of your suggestion.

In order to pass this along to the team, it would be great to learn more about a specific process you use this for and the level of friction this causes for you now. Let me know, and we’ll be sure to surface this for development discussions. Thanks!

Hi @Kaitie

Thanks for your reply.
I use the “Copy Task…” a lot, and some times I have the need to add a link from a subtask to another subtask of the same task.

Take this example:

  • template task
    • template subtask 1
    • template subtask 2

Now, I want to add a link from “template subtask 1” to “template subtask 2”. I just use the “@” in the description

When I duplicate the “template task” into “copied task” I find that
copied task > template subtask 1
contains a link to
template task > template subtask 2

It would be amazing that if I create a link to one of the subtask or from a subtask to another subtask, duplicating the task, it would update the link as well.

Now, I understand why this is not smart to do straight away, I would just love a way to tell asana “Link to this subtask, but if I duplicate it, make sure to update the link”…

Not sure it makes much sense in the way I described it…

Ciao!

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I second this request 100%!! :slight_smile:

2 Likes

Also, another super thing would be to have the possibility to prepare the dependencies in the template and have them active when you copy the task.
Example:
Task T has subtasks S1 and S2. S2 depends on S1

If I duplicate the template, it would be ace if the new subtasks would maintain the dependencies (but not on the template subtask, to the copy subtask)!!!

2 Likes

Thanks for this detail and for the thorough examples! We’ve recorded this feedback.

I am using my tasks as templates basically. I’m using Asana to manage editorial content (for a BOOK, not a website), and there are multiple stages of the pipeline, with each having a ‘checklist’ or ‘things to consider.’ Not all of the items in the checklist need to be checked off, but they still need to be considered, and I didn’t want to have to redo the list for over 100 pieces of content! Dragging each task by hand was insanity. (because it resulted in me needing to copy each tasks again for dragging into next piece).

I learned on YT how to create my own template:

Essentially you need to bury the checklist ONE LAYER DEEP into the task. There is still the tedious process of copying the task, but it will retain the description by the way, and copying one task with all of right pieces is better than copy 2 or 3 dozen subtasks.

What I THEN do – for my own purposes – is merge that checklist with the piece of content as it comes in. I merge the copy of the template with the content task. This retains ONLY the full checklist from the template, which is all that I need. The merge results in checklist being added to a content-specific task (with all of its attending description, comments, custom fields, etc.). KEY THING however: the merged checklist template will be marked “COMPLETE” so if you are doing any reporting on completed work vs not completed work, this will throw off your numbers. Simply do a search on all completed tasks and delete the ones marked as merged ones.

Hi @hafidha
The issue at hand is a bit deeper. If one of my subtasks has a link to another subtasks, when I duplicate the task, the subtask refers to the template subtasks, not the copy one

@carlo
I’m sorry for the confusion–I put my comment on the wrong post! (I had two Asana community tabs open). As for the linking – I don’t know. I understand your concern. I have never used this method of linking to another subtask myself.

Off the top of my hand, the difficulty in something like what you’re asking for is that when a copy of a (template) task is being made, the links you would like to be updated (to link to something else) do not exist yet. I’m not a programmer, so maybe there is a work around. I think it’s a good idea, I just don’t know how you can point a reference to something that is not yet there.

Hmm. Maybe there could be a “fix/update” button – to be used as necessary, AFTER a copy was made, in which all links could then be revised?

Did this issue ever get resolved? I would love to have this functionality in Asana as well, for different tasks within a project.

Hmm, I don’t know - I know that using the custom templates works well with dependencies, but that’s not quite what this is. Let me test it.

edit - nope it still links to the referenced task in the project. Honestly I think I prefer it that way, given how I use reference tasks and templates. I’m happy dependencies are relative though.

It looks like this is still an issue.

We use templates prolifically and have multiple team members working on projects. I have spent many many hours putting in links to tasks so that people know the next task to assign, tasks to add documents to etc.

To find that the links go back to the original template is frustrating and diminishes the value of our templates we have invested a lot of time into (and money - as paid users of Asana).

I have tried this multiple ways including

Use Template
Create new project from template
Duplicate tasks

No matter how I do it, everything links back to the original task within the template.

Ran in to this issue today. Would be amazing to have relative linking in templates to tasks/subtasks within the template. Ideal for referencing tasks and hand-holding the user with guides and instructions.

2 Likes

Same here - would like to be able to have task link references in descriptions to be relative to the newly created project and not the original template! As previous user stated, it would help with hand-holding users on instructions.

2 Likes

The more number of people increase who use Asana template, the more terrible this issue would be.
Would like Asana devs to fix it as soon as possible.

As @carlo mentioned, it’s better to have “relative” link when composing templates.
I assume UI of the setting as following;

  1. Set link with “@“ mention as usual ( set absolute lik)
  2. Right click on the link text
  3. Only when the project is “template” and the linked object is a task within the project, open a menu “modify to relative link”
  4. When “modify to relative link” chose, generates relative link and a mark added to the link text to indicate it’s relative link (you can see the relative link mark just when editing template ).
  5. When replicate the template to project, relative link text will be modified to absolute link text
  • To change relative link to absolute one, right click on the relative link text.
  • When chose “modify to absolute link”, a mark disappeared
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Thanks for taking the time to provide this feedback and link the previous threads @Kenichi!

I’ve gone ahead and merged the previous thread with your post to keep all the feedback together :slight_smile:

Hopefully this is something out Product team can implement, but I’ll keep you posted with any updates on this thread!

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Ran into this issue very recently. Since you can’t link tasks (only set dependencies) I was trying to use the task description in the templates to reference other tasks that contain related information and create a “guide” for users. My hours of work have been rendered essentially useless since everything just links back to the template :expressionless:

1 Like