Custom Fields

Custom fields let you add additional data to tasks in your Asana projects. You can create a field for stage, priority, cost, or anything else that’s important to your workflow, team, and company. This lets individuals have clarity on work happening across their Organization.

There are two types of Custom Fields you can create in Asana. These are fields that are specific to a single project or portfolio and fields that can be reused across your Organization.

Creating a field that is reusable across your organization

global field

To create a field that is reusable across your organization:

Click the Add Fields button if you have yet to add fields to the project

global

From the Add Custom Field tab you can:

  1. Add a Field title
  2. Select the Field type
  3. Add a description
  4. Add the field to your Organization’s field library to make it reusuable across your Organization.

Creating a field for a specific project or portfolio

local

To create a field for a specific project or portfolio:

Click the plus icon on the reight top corner if you have yet to add fields to the project

local field

From the Add Custom Field tab you can:

  1. Add a Field title
  2. Select the Field type
  3. Add a description
  4. Do not add the field to your Organization’s field library, to make it specfic to your project.

Adding custom fields from your toolbar

Add custom fields directly from your toolbar.

customfield

Field types & limitations

There are three available field types to choose from, two of which have an additional option associated to them:

Field Additional Option
Drop-down Drop-down items
Number Decimal Places
Text
  • It is currently only possible to have 20 fields in a single Project.
  • You can have up to 60 fields per task (this can be done by multi-homing multiple projects to a single task).
  • A dropdown Custom Field can only have up to 50 options.
  • You can only have up to 5 Custom Fields visible in your task list at any one time.

Choose an existing field from your library

You can make Custom Fields global across your Organization, so you can use a Custom Field across multiple projects. You also have the option to make fields that are local to a single project or portfolio.

You can choose Global Fields from your Organization’s field library.

Click the Add field option from inside the Fields option in your toolbar.

From here:

  1. Click Choose from library
  2. Select the desired field you wish to add to your project from the typeahead results

Viewing fields in a project

You can view custom fields as columns in a project:

From your project’s list view:

Custom fields will be displayed as columns in your main pane’s task list.

You can also view custom fields from within a task:

Custom Fields will be displayed in your right pane’s task details.

If a task belongs to multiple projects that have different Custom Fields, all fields will appear in the right pane’s task details.

Edit Fields

You can edit a Custom Field using your toolbar or column header.

Click on the pencil icon next to the field name to edit the field.

You can also edit a custom field using the column header. Click the drop-down arrow next to the custom field and select Edit field.

For Global Custom Fields in your Organization, edits made to them will apply globally to all the projects you use the field with.

How to delete a field permanently:

To permanently delete a field:

  1. Click the pencil icon next to the field name
  2. Click Delete Field
  3. Enter the field name
  4. Click Delete

Edit drop-down fields

When editing a drop-down field, you can:

  1. Edit the color of the field option
  2. Remove an option from the field
  3. Add a new option to the field
  4. Delete the field entirely

Rearrange drop down options

Drag and drop the drop down options to rearrange them in your Custom Field.

If you remove a drop-down item as an option in your field, tasks that use that item will retain the deleted item. The field could then be changed to another value, but you are not able to change a field back to a deleted item.

Edit number fields

When editing a number field, you can:

  1. Modify how many decimal places are displayed
  2. Delete the field entirely

Reducing your field’s decimal places will retain all current values, but they will be rounded up/down. Increase your field’s decimal places and the original value will appear again.

Remove Fields from a Project

Remove your field from a project if it is no longer needed or applicable.

Click on the pencil icon next to the Custom Field title in your toolbar.

Then click “Remove from project.”

You can also select the Remove field from project option by clicking on the drop-down arrow next to the custom field name in the column header.

Removing a field only removes it from the current project, it does not delete the field entirely. Other projects in your Organization with the same field will retain it and the field could still be added to other projects in your Organization.

Retained values

Removing a field from your project does not delete your field’s values from your project’s tasks.

If your field is populated, the Custom Field and its value will still appear in the right pane of your task’s details.

If your field is empty, the custom field will also disappear from the right pane of your task’s details.

Hide a Custom Field

You can hide a Custom Field by clicking into the Fields tab in your toolbar and pressing the toggle icon.

hide

Sort by Custom Fields

From your project toolbar

Sort your project by custom field on your list view.

sort

To sort your project by custom field:

  1. Click the sort icon in your project’s toolbar
  2. Select your custom field

If you want to save this as your default view, click the drop-down arrow next to the project header and select “Save layout as default.”

Sort using the caret in your column header

You can also sort by custom field using the caret in your project header.

sort

Adjusting a task’s Custom Field value will automatically re-sort the project.

Custom Field & Search Views

Use Search Views to search for tasks using the same Custom Field across multiple projects.

Start by clicking the search bar to access the Advanced Search options. From there, click Add Filter, then select Custom Field.

Permissions

Who can modify a project’s Custom Fields

In a premium team or Organization, anyone with access to a project can add, edit, or remove its Custom Fields.

In private projects: the project owner and the project members can view and modify the project’s fields.

Public projects in a request to join or Hidden Teams: the project owner, the project members, and members of the project’s Team can view and modify the project’s fields.

Public projects in a public Team: the project owner, the project members, member of the project’s Team, and all Organization Members can view and modify the project’s fields.

Organization Guests (those that do not have a company email address) are unable create/edit/delete Custom Fields or search for them using the Advanced Search tool. They will only be able to input or edit the values of existing Custom Fields.

Lock Custom Fields

Business and Enterprise customers have the option to lock Custom Fields either upon creation or when editing an existing field.

Lock field 1

When accessing the settings of a Custom Field, you can choose to make the Custom Field editable by all Members or to restrict edit access to just yourself.

The Custom Field lock can be overridden by the member who locked the field or an Asana admin at any time.

Using Custom Fields

Custom Fields help you track work according to your team’s needs. The name and value of any field is up to you and possibilities are almost endless. Here are a few examples that show field types across different workflows:

Priority

You can use Custom Fields to indicate a task’s priority level. For example, an engineering team using Asana for bug tracking, can create a drop-down field to set the priority level (low, medium, high) of the bug.

Once implemented, you can filter tasks down in the List View to focus just on tasks with a certain field value set. Click Filter at the top of your task list, then Custom filter. This will allow you to view just the “high” priority tasks, for example.

Use colors to distinguish between the drop-down field options. Red can mean “high priority”, for example.

Stages or phases

If work moves through stages or phases, you can create a drop-down field to mark which stage the work is in. As that work progresses, you can change the stage accordingly. A marketing team could track the stage of each content piece to get a better idea of their editorial pipeline, for example.

If you want to single out only the tasks marked with a certain field across different projects, you can do an advanced search by that field’s name. For example, the content marketing manager could do an advanced search for only the tasks marked as “Drafting” to find out how many new content pieces are in the works across the entire team.

Costing

Another way to use Custom Fields is to track work requests and time costing. A design team might have a template task for others to make design requests. They could use a number Custom Field for the requester to input how much time they anticipate for the work. Then, designers can prioritize hours accordingly and know how much they’re working on before deciding to take on more work or not.

add up numbers

Multi-select tasks with number fields to add up their sum:

  1. Multi-select tasks with number fields you wish to add
  2. The total sum will appear in the task pane

Information tracking

If you use Asana for candidate tracking or account tracking, you can use a text field to enter specific information like an email address, phone number, company, or address.

Using tags vs. Custom Fields

Tags and custom fields allow you to categorize, filter, and denote information in Asana. In general, custom fields are best for standard use across an Organization, while tags are more informal. We strongly advocate for the use of Custom Fields, which are more robust and visible than tags. Depending on your workflow, you might find that your team uses them in different ways, but here some scenarios to help you decide:

Use Custom Fields if you:

  • Want to add certain data to all the tasks in a project
  • Have standard information you need to track on tasks across projects (e.g., priority level, time costing, work stage)
  • Want to make sure your teammates fill out certain information for each task in a project
  • Need to sort or search by specific data fields

Use tags if you:

  • Need ad-hoc tagging, you have unlimited options, or aren’t quite sure what needs to be tagged at the time of creation
  • Need to see the tag from My Tasks
  • Only need to mark a few tasks within a project
  • Want to mark template tasks

Using Custom Fields in subtasks

It’s important to note that subtasks do not automatically inherit the projects, tags, nor the assignee of their parent tasks, even though you might see the name of the parent’s project at the top of the subtask details pane.

In order to add or edit Custom Fields in subtasks, you first need to add the subtask to the project by clicking into the subtask details (the speech bubble to the right of the subtask name) and using Tab+P to open the project field or by going to the upper right drop-down and selecting “Add to Project.”

Tracking url links using Custom Fields

You can track links in Custom Fields when using a text field. If you enter a url link in the text field, you can then access the link directly from the task pane. Once you click a link from a Custom Field, the page will open in a new window.

Linkifying fields

To track a url link using a text field:

  1. Enter the url in the text field
  2. Click the Visit Link icon either directly from the main pane or in the right task pane

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Asana Lessons

Learn the Asana basics in less than 15 minutes with these quick lessons

Tasks

Tasks Lessons

Track all of your work

3 Minutes

My Tasks

My Tasks Lessons

Always know what to do next

3 Minutes

Projects

Projects Lessons

Work with teammates

3 Minutes

Inbox

Inbox Lessons

Communicate even faster

3 Minutes

You can use tasks to track, collaborate on, and organize all your work.

Tasks can be to-dos, ideas, notes, or reminders.

Assign a task to yourself or a teammate.

Press Tab+M to quickly assign a task to yourself.

Add a due date so your deadline is clear.

Add instructions and expectations in the task description field.

Type @ to link to other tasks, people, conversations, or projects.

When you @mention someone, they’ll be added to your task as a follower.

Followers get notified when new comments or attachments are added.

Add anyone who needs to stay up to date on your task as a follower.

They can always unfollow to stop getting notifications on your task.

Add comments to ask questions or give followers updates.

Heart a comment to let followers know you’ve seen it.

Add relevant files or irrelevant GIFs as attachments.

You can also attach directly from Dropbox, Google Drive, or Box.

Create subtasks to break your task into smaller steps.

When you’ve added a subtask, press enter to add another.

Subtasks can contain all the same details as regular tasks.

Click the comment bubble to add comments or attachments to a subtask.

You can create tasks from any screen using your top bar.

Every Task has a unique URL to easily copy and share.

Congrats! Looks like you’re up to the task.

On to the next lesson!

Always know what to do next with My Tasks.

My Tasks is a list of every task assigned to you.

It makes managing your work simple.

Click on your My Tasks list and start typing to add tasks.

Like a text document, add a new line for each new task or paste in any list.

Forward to x@mail.asana.com to turn your emails into tasks

Asana will translate your email into a task, including your attachments.

New tasks will appear at the top of your list in New Tasks.

Tasks you add to My Tasks are private to you.

Click Make Public to share them with your team.

Prioritize tasks as Today, Upcoming, or Later.

Click on the blue dot next to the task, to quickly sort it.

Mark the tasks you’ll have time for Today.

Teammates can view your My Tasks list to see what you’re up to.

They’ll only see tasks you’ve made public or shared in a project (more on projects later).

Mark tasks due within a week as Upcoming so you can see what will be due soon.

On its due date, your task will move from Upcoming to Today.

Just like magic.

Mark tasks due in more than a week for Later.

They’ll be out of your way until their due date approaches.

Your tasks will move from Later to Upcoming a week before they’re due.

Keep My Tasks prioritized to always know what to work on and what’s coming next.

Now you know how to track and plan your work!

Next, learn how to work with your team in Asana.

Work together on groups of tasks with projects.

Projects help you track and organize the steps in a process or initiative.

Like an event plan, product launch, or editorial calendar.

Like My Tasks, simply click and type to add tasks to your project.

If you have your steps in a document or email already, paste in that list.

Add tasks to your project from email.

View your project’s unique email address from the project dropdown menu.

Add your tasks to other related projects.

Tasks can be included in multiple projects.

Add sections to organize tasks in a list project.

Type Tab+N at the end of any task title to make it a section.

Or, add columns to organize tasks in a boards project.

Drag and drop tasks between or within columns to reorder.

Assign your tasks and set due dates.

Never miss a deadline with your project calendar.

Drag and drop tasks on your calendar to change their due dates.

Add everyone who needs to stay updated on your project as members.

Project members will get notified of new conversations, statuses, and tasks.

Post conversations to make announcements or start discussions.

Your post will be sent to all project members.

Use Progress to see how your project is moving forward.

Set a project status to update your team on how it’s going.

The Project Owner will be reminded to set a status once a week.

Open and organize projects from your sidebar.

Favorite projects to pin them to the top of your sidebar.

Click the star button on the left of your project name to favorite it.

Create new projects from any screen using your top bar.

Now you can move projects forward with your team.

Just one more lesson before you dive in.

Communicate and coordinate faster with Inbox.

Check Inbox to quickly read and respond to your latest updates.

Inbox will notify you when you have a task due…

and when teammates update tasks, conversations, and projects you follow.

Open and respond to updates without leaving Inbox.

Click an update and you’ll have all the context you need to respond.

Archive updates you’re ready to dismiss.

Click the X that appears on the right of an update to archive it.

Open Archive to move dismissed updates back to your Inbox.

Click the arrow that appears on the right of an archived update to move it back to Inbox.

Unfollow tasks or projects to stop receiving updates about them.

In the end, you have control over the updates you receive (or choose not to receive)

When you’re ready, you can turn Asana’s Email notifications off.

Most communication with your team can be more easily managed from Inbox. Just remember to check it often.

Congratulations! Now you’re ready to have a great work day with Asana.