Recurring tasks with dependencies

Background: We’ve set up tasks with subtasks and dependencies:

Every month, we have blogging tasks that involves account managers, writers, and developers.

So what we did was create a main task for blogging.

The main task has the following subtasks:

  • Write the article (assigned to a specific writer)
  • Get client approval (assigned to the account manager)
  • Get blog published (assigned to the developer)

The second and third subtasks are dependent on the task before.

And the main task is dependent on the last subtask.

The main task has a monthly recurring due date. The subtasks get assigned a due date by automation.

We’ve set it up this way so that:

  • When the writer is done with writing the main article, all they have to do is complete their subtask. This will trigger an automation (when task is no longer blocked) that notifies the account manager on the second subtask that the blog has been written and is ready for client approval. The automation also adds a due date on the account manager’s subtask.

  • Similarly, when the account manager gets approval from the client, all they have to do is mark their subtask complete and that makes the third task no longer dependent, triggering another notification for the developer that they can proceed with publishing the approved blog. The automation also adds a due date for the developer’s subtask.

  • when the publisher is done, they tick off their subtask and that makes the main task no longer dependent triggering an automation that notifies the account manager on the main task that they can close the main task.

  • When the account manager marks the main task complete, and since the main task is on a recurring due date, the task repeats - meaning the main task gets duplicated with all of the subtasks and the assignees and dependencies.

This was all working beautifully. Until we noticed that things have changed and now when the main task repeats, all the dependencies don’t get copied to the repeated task. So the automations no longer work.

WHY!!! What’s the point of a recurring task if the original state of that task doesn’t get copied over to the duplicate?


Sounds like a really brilliant and useful automation you had set up. Without knowing for sure, here are a few ideas:

  1. Asana could be running an (unannounced?) A/B test, in which case, fingers crossed that the version you’re on gets rejected. So, @moderators , is this the case?
  2. Is there any chance at all that something has been changed/edited? Have you stepped through the rules, fields, logic etc. to make sure everything is exactly as it should be?
  3. Have you tried re-creating the exact same setup, but building from scratch? There’s a chance it might work.

Best of luck in getting your awesome automation working again. This is EXACTLY the sort of productivity win that Asana uses as its value proposition, so I very much hope they see the value in not breaking it - if that is what has happened.

As background, recuring Tasks have always tended to create some fragility, and the more that gets added to them, the more chance of a failure. See e.g

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Thanks for the response!

I’ve been away for a few months actually, and when I returned things have stopped working. A lot of the rules I’ve set before have been paused automatically and I know this because I activated the rules again and when I triggered them, they got paused again automatically. I’m assuming that it’s because the custom rules interface has recently changed. The change seems to be good, so I just recreated the rules and they are working fine if the tasks have the dependencies. The only problem I see now is the fact that the recurring tasks don’t retain the dependencies like it used to.

I’ve tried creating a new task, added dependencies and tested the rules. They work. But when I mark the main task complete, and because the task that gets automatically created doesn’t retain the dependencies, the rules don’t get triggered. Now it seems we have to add the dependencies back when the new task gets created, which is frustrating and defeats the purpose of the automation. I really hope someone puts the old system back where dependencies of the original recurring task is retained when it’s completed and recreated.

I have the same issue for a nearly identical use case. Really hope this gets fixed! I used in my last job and automations like this were a piece of cake :frowning: