Return back sections to be added by adding ":"

You recent change forces us to perform additional actions, just compare (on example of creating of subtasks):


  1. Tab + S
  2. Enter name, add “:”, (now it’s a section)


  1. Tab + S
  2. Tab + R, enter name
  3. Return to the previous subtask with empty name
  4. Tab + Backspace

Annoying and time consuming. You won ability to use “:” in names, but it requires more time to handle that with hotkeys!

Welcome to the Forum @And and thanks for submitting your feedback.

This update is slowly being rolled out to all our users and is part of a broader “Section” update.

We have replaced the Tab + : shortcut with “Tab + N”, so creating a new section should only be two steps:

  1. Tab + N
  2. Rename Section

Hope this helps! Please let me know if you have any follow-up questions!

2 steps in comparison with 1 step as previously. I see the idea behind this, but at least please give ability to convert tasks to sections. Otherwise it requires additional actions and additional time to be spent.
Also it works silly when you create subtasks, and especially sections in subtasks - see the workflow I outline above (if you think it may be simplified - let me know how)

Also there is no reason to append “:” to the end of section if “:” doesn’t matter currently

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Understand having the “Add Section Button”
I liked just adding the colon to create a section because I could create it as I typed. The section would be created exactly where I typed the colon.
However, now the only option is to click the button or Tab+N, and the section is created about 4 lines down from where I wanted it…so then I have to delete the unwanted lines and move the section where I want it. This is very inconvenient.

Could you please make it so that I can create the section exactly where my cursor is at least? Otherwise please return the “:” to us?
Thank you!

I would really like this as well. For instance, if I create a project plan in Word, i can paste it in a get a project in asana. Without the “:”, it doesn’t work. You have to replace the sections manually.

I agree. For us, a really helpful process is to be able to paste in sections from text that is typed elsewhere. It needn’t be a colon in particular that is brought back, but if there’s some basic text method of converting a sub-task into a section, it will restore that enormously time-saving feature.

Agreed also. I’ve been working with the the new “Tab+N” feature but have to say that it’s been annoying to realize I need to make a task with subtasks into a section—with no way to do it. The only way is to make an new Section via Tab+N and then manually move all the subtasks over… one by one.

Whatever recently changed for section headers has made my life more difficult. I used to be able to copy a long list of tasks (including all of the section headers) and paste them into another project and it would maintain all of the section headers due to the colon : Now… It does not maintain the section headers so you have to go in and use the new shortcut TAB+N, copy/paste you text from the task into the new section header and then delete the task. I had do to that for ALL OF THE SECTION HEADERS!! It took me 3 times longer to copy/paste that whole string of tasks because of this update.

Please change it back! I like the : creating the section headers. This was so easy. Why fix what ain’t broke?

Similar issue, but a slightly different application here.

TL; DR, giving it a keyboard shortcut can be useful, but taking away the ability to turn a task into a heading and vice versa is no bueno. Currently I can’t even find a manual way (by accessing ellipses) to do this.

e.g. I’ll often start collecting tasks in a given project then revisit later to reorganize before planning. Sometimes a task turns into a “user story” and my team has to start creating related “tasks” underneath it. (This opens up a whole another conversation of hierarchy/tree management, which I’ll search for before potentially creating a request) Now my only option is to write all of my “stories” using TAB-N, anticipating tasks to be written below. But this still creates issues for me since there’s no way to turn a header into a task. Like the OP, I’m stuck re-creating everything manually.

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This is a good thought… Maybe the keyboard shortcut TAB + N would be okay if it could convert an existing task to a section header and visa versa. Still more work for me in my example (copy/pasting a long list of tasks with mixes of sections and tasks) but still would be faster than the current method of fixing it.

I actually opened a ticket about this and was told the reason they made the change was due to them working on the ability to switch back and forth from list to board view… I still think the functionality of converting task to sections and vice versa is important.

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Since posting my reply, I went through a few more threads discussing/lashing out (lol) the same issue users are having. It sounds like the main culprit is this old post: Switching from Boards to List View (and vice versa), which you just confirmed. It certainly sounds like they’ll be moving forward as planned so I guess it falls on all users to decide how much we dislike this change and whether this is going to be our deal-breaker or not.

Like me, yourself and many others out there, I think the question now is going to be whether Asana will at least consider adding an ability to switch between a task and a header…

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There really needs to be a way to create a header from a task - when choosing Asana a couple of years back, it was because of the ease. Many team members have adopted quickly because of this but keyboard shortcuts are not as easy for them to learn. Please bring back an easy way to update a task into a header!

This change is definitely a step back in terms of usability, and user experience. Adding the colon was such as simple thing to do. Tab+N needs you to think about how you want to organise the page before you start. I am constantly having to retype now to make tasks headers. I can’t understand why you took the colon away when you introduced this new functionality.

I would just like to request that you go back to creating a section by simply adding a colon (:slight_smile: at the end of a line, instead of the newer method of Tab+N to create a blank line section. Often I end up deciding that a task should be a section, and I have to create a new line and type in the task again, and delete the task, instead of just adding a colon at the end of what I had already typed. You can leave the Tab+N function as well, but I really liked the colon - it saves time.

thanks, love Asana, recommend it to all my friends! :slight_smile:

Hi @Laurie_O_Loughlin and welcome to the forum!

There’s actually already a topic open for this request; you can add your vote for it here:

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Hi @Laurie_O_Loughlin, I’ve gone ahead and merged your post with Return back sections to be added by adding ":" to consolidate votes.