Reference numbers for tasks

When a task is created, is there a reference number in the background that we can not see? We create hundreds of them and it would make life so much easier if I could look them up by an auto populated number. The task line line numbers are nice but the number does not stay if you move the task’s order in that list.



Hey @Erik_Graham,

Thanks for reaching out. It sounds like using the task-id could be a good solution to your question. Each task gets assigned a unique task-id when the task is created.

You can get a task’s id from the URL for the task. If you are looking at a task from within a project, the number at the end of the URL will be the task-d:<project-id>/<task- id>

In task full-screen mode, there is only one number in the URL and that is the task-id.

Hopefully that works for you!



Hi Jeff,

Thanks for the quick reply. That does help a bit, but it is not searchable. Placing 207233374039988 in the search box on top gives you the couch and cat. Nice graphic btw. I am sure the cat knocked it over the edge.

Could the ID be placed somewhere (minimally) in the task somewhere where we can copy paste from it and it would then be searchable.


I would like to add that this would be quite useful to our team here, as well. A searchable ticket or task # that is actually implemented in the body of the task and not just a long numbered URL at the top. The ability to make this number specific to each project or team would be really helpful to us. It would also be great if you could add a task creation date in the body of the task, too, not just a little comment underneath the task description. These are features other ticketing systems have been using and are helpful in managing a support desk and team productivity.



You’re correct – I’m sorry to confirm that the way search is built it won’t work for task-id. You would need to put the task-id in your browser URL directly (using the format I mentioned:<project-id>/<task- id>).

Unfortunately, there is no built-in feature that automatically ads a unique id to the text of a task. You could write a script that does this, but it’s not native in the product. Another workaround would be to paste the task-id into a custom field value on the task, however, this would be a manual process.

1 Like

Well, Jeff while I appreciate the reply maybe your team should consider making these features of your product. It’s clearly sought after, commented on in several threads in this community, and would be of benefit to support teams such as mine and Erik_Graham’s.

If Asana added Task #s internal to every task, viewable/observable at the top of the task, and added a section for “Date Created” and then made tasks searchable/sortable by date created, I would enjoy your product a lot more than I currently do. We manually input a task # into the description of every task because Asana does not do this natively, if it did it would save our engineers significant time in their day and make searching for tasks being worked on or completed far easier. If you could make it sortable by team/project too that would be a huge bonus.

Thank you,
US eDirect Technical Services


Just out of curiousity, why would you want to put the task id into the description?

I also don’t get why you’d need to search by task id, as you can go to the task directly by the url.

1 Like

How else would you propose organizing and sorting all of your tasks by group/project/team? Having it in the URL only is a pain. There should be a method for having all tasks displayed by an ID. Have you used a helpdesk ticketing system before? Because that is essentially what I’m asking for here, a feature that other ticketing systems have, a way to sort and organize your tasks by ID, group, team, etc. and make it a searchable feature of the task system. This speaks to directly what the owner of Asana was discussing in his latest video, on how too much of the work is work about the work. This is essentially my problem with Asana is there is no way to sort the tasks themselves, by ID, group, or date created. There should be a task ID associated with every task that is viewable within the task. Make it optional if people don’t want to use it, but I know my team would, saving us a lot of time and “work about the work”.

Hope that answers your question, Vib_Wor



Hi Jeff,

Since Asana likes case studies, here we go…

I was recently in a board room with my team and developers. I was heading it with Asana on the main screen.

Me: Ok, let’s talk about this task. I need everybody to go to it. It is in the Enhancement Board 2018
Ana: In which column?
Me: It is in the In Progress column about half way down.
Vesta: I still can’t find it.
Me: Wait a sec, there is a task reference number up here. (I point to the URL).
Peter (Head Developer): It won’t come up.
Me: Sorry, you can’t search for it in the search box.
Peter: Are you serious?
Me: You have to type the whole url string into a browser for it to show up.
Peter: Really?! Who designed this?
Me: Sorry everybody, hang on I will create a conversation in the project and send you the URL.
Vesta: I still don’t have it.
Me: Sorry, Vesta, I forgot to include you. Here you go. Ok, everybody got that now?
Team: People nodding somewhat miffed .
Me: Ok, this task relates to another in a different project that we started in 2017. So I will have to send that url to you now.
Team: Hugh sighs.

In hopefully a not to distant future…

Me: Ok, let’s talk about this task. The reference number is 208125469. Just type that in the search box on top. Everybody got that? Awesome let’s get going.

Jeff, I hope that explains the need.



That’s great stuff there Erik, my company has a hundred similar use cases where we feel stifled by Asana’s inability to sort, organize, and reference tasks when we are collaborating.

In short, give me two features in Asana and I will be super happy and more of an advocate for your product: First, Ticket/Task ID in the body of the task, or the ability to automatically add task IDs in the subject line of the task. Second, include the same for date of task creation in the body of the task or on the main project screen. We are manually adding the date the task was created in the subject line of the task because this is not a feature so we know how long it’s been open for. You currently have “Due Date” as a sortable category, why not “Creation Date”, it just makes sense that these would be features/options and would improve the quality of your task processes. Make your project screen have Task ID + Date Created and our team will save time and get more things done.



Sorry for being naive:

Why didn’t they search for “Enhancement Board 2018”, as it is the title of the task ?

I think it is easier to remember and type that 9 numbers in a row.

1 Like

matm, I will explain a perfect use case for having numbers for every task:

We have an external client that uses us as a ticketing system. They e-mail into our system and it generates a ticket automatically. The end users create the subject line when they e-mail in, and often times the subject line is identical, such as “Make a Reservation” or “Account Locked Out”. It would be much easier if we can go through and sort these tasks if they had a unique ID that was contained within the task. Additionally, having the creation date of when the task was created embedded into the ticket itself would make sorting through these tasks/tickets far easier. For us, it would change Asana from merely a task creation system where we have to manually input the date and a unique ID for each task into a fully functional ticketing system.

Hope that makes more sense concerning the practical use of this issue, at least from our company’s standpoint.



Hi Matm,

Enhancement Board 2018 was the project not a task. We have several boards, list projects and many tasks have the same name in different projects. A reference number would be helpful.


Do you have Premium? I’d really suggest looking at Custom Fields and using Tags. If you have premium for your team, you can sort any task by any field, tag, assignee, creator, due date, etc the list goes on.

We have templates for certain projects or clients (or types of issues, in your case). The template has a team member preassigned with collaborators of that task added as well. When a new task or job comes in, the team manager duplicates that task, changes the name and start date. You mentioned the creation date, but Asana does have this. It’s called start date. A task can have a start date and no end date or end and start. This task can have some custom fields too or special tags (that can be color coded). Then you can sort by those fields or tags.

I agree that Asana can be a handful to on-board. It took over a year to get our company of 10-15 people on board and some still resist it. I’d say i’m a very advanced user at this point and there’s no way i could do my job without it.


For this issue, you can set up email to have it directly forward into an Asana project. For example, when that client sends you a ticketing email, you can create a forwarding system in your host email account. These emails will forward to a specific Asana project and you can input tags, assignees etc. I use this for vendors i work with outside of our Asana ecosystem but i need to interface with. I’ll BCC the email address for a given Asana project and that way, when the vendor replies it goes into that project for me to organize and create due dates and other actionable subtasks with other team members. Read up on that here Turning emails into Asana tasks | Product guide • Asana Product Guide

I’ve had similar issues like this in presentations. One way i overcome this is to have a HQ team that includes everyone at the company. That way, when it’s time to do a presentation that i’ve worked on in my own workspace, i just add that task to a project in HQ. That way, everyone in the company gets access to it right away and you don’t have to share individually or go through and add people as collaborators. And then when i’m presenting, i go to the View list and sort by order that I want to present (using some custom Sort fields) and choose “Save View For Everyone”. With that system, everyone can see exactly where i’m at.

Hi Patrick,

Thank you for taking the time to add your input in which I will look into. I personally think that a reference number (which already exists in Asana but in the URL) should be added lets say to the creation date text:

Erik Graham created task. Feb 21 (add Reference number here maybe?).

It can’t be that hard for the programmers to add this from something that is already being generated by the system. Only issue with this is that you can not search for creation date in the search box. They would have to have the reference number somewhere it could be searched.


Have you tried Zapier/ ?

Patrick I appreciate your responses but I don’t think you are quite tapping at the heart at the issue that we’re describing here. I understand that there are workarounds such as mail forwarding (we’re doing this already because of a recent Asana security update that destroyed our external clients ability to e-mail in and create tasks themselves), but that isn’t what I’m looking for out of Asana.

That’s great that there’s a creation date already added in the task, why can’t this field be displayable in the project page view? Doesn’t seem like it would be too difficult of a feature to add and would provide significant value to the project page view. Tags are also not the solution to our issue with the system, as we’re already manually adding the date to every task because Asana does not allow you to do this.

As stated, give me two things out of the system and it will make our day-to-day much easier to manage with Asana: A task ID displayable and sortable within the project page, and a creation date field displayable and sortable within the project page. We do not care about due date so much as the date the task was created, the time in which the ticket/task has been open for. That’s how our SLAs get satisfied. I’ve attached a screenshot image of the two areas of concern, hope this helps and that these features get looked at and considered by the product team.



I see what you mean. It is a fairly specific usage you require.