Subtask assigned and due before a task

subtasks
due-dates
due-date
tasks

#1

I have created a task to do our monthly billing. I both start and complete that task on the first of each month. There are a few prep items I need to do a few days before the end of the month, so that I can be ready to go on the first. Those involve reaching out to vendors, etc. Currently, I have a master task to do the billing set up and assigned to me on the 1st. There are several subtasks, which are done on the first, but the tasks that happen earlier, I assign to me and make them due on the 27th. Both the master task as well as those subtasks are set as recurring. From here, you can guess what happens. When I log into Asana on the 27th, I see the task for this month’s billing as for the previous month’s billing…and back into perpituity. This is surely due to the recurring tasks in the prior billing tasks (now completed). I would simply like to set up Asana to do the billing on the 1st of each month, but have the two subtasks assigned to me for the 27th. Is there a way I can do this whereby when I complete the billing task, it recreates the new month’s task including the subtasks to perform on the 27th? Sorry if I am not explaining this well. I can clarify if necessary.


#2

Hi @Chris_Guimbellot! I have a suggestion for you, but I suggest you’re looking for a more complex answer. Please do guide me if you’re looking for more detailed solutions.

First could you clarify what you’re trying to accomplish by making this change? What “pain” are you feeling with your existing process that you’d like to be different? I ask this particularly because it sounds like you’re existing recurring tasks are set up quite well. Also, I’m having trouble seeing a difference between what you’re doing now and the new setup you’d like to create.

Looking forward to hearing more information from you so we can find a solution that works for you!

In the meantime, here is a setup that might help you but, to be honest, might actually be what you’re already doing :blush: Both the parent task and the subtasks are recurring. You might also consider turning the parent task into a template task so you can customize it each month if you need to.


#3

I think this example you gave will work initially. The problem comes when @Chris_Guimbellot completes the main task. I would assume that the two subtasks will still have the same due date.

Recreating the same example, I now have this after completion:

Then, a new task was created:

See that the subtasks retain the Mar 27 due date.

Actually, in our team, we also have this issue. We have tasks specifically for regular reviews of project documents. This means that these are recurring tasks. What we do as a practice is that, we create a subtask for the approval and assign it to our manager. After approval, we then complete the task and Asana recreates the task but retaining all subtasks and all its properties (except for completion.) It means, our manager receives a new task for approval, but this is not how we expect it to behave.

I know there’s a work around for this (i.e. using separate tasks with hypertexts.) But the task / subtask relationship makes more sense to us, since it is clear that for every document update task, there is an approval task that needs to be completed.

It probably means that there should be more options when we are creating recurring tasks. Like, the ability to retain the subtasks, their assignees and/or due dates, or to have their due dates follow the same recurrence pattern as with the parent task.


Recurring tasks and subtask dates
#4

Thanks so much for the help. The issue that I have is that when I complete the main task, it regenerates the subtasks, but for dates in the past. How I would like it to work is this:
Month 1:
Monthly Billing - Due March 1

  • Billing Prep - Due February 27

Month 2:
Monthly Billing - Due April 1

  • Billing Prep - Due March 27

How it is actually working is this:
Month 1:
Monthly Billing - Due March 1

  • Billing Prep - Due February 27

Month 2:
Monthly Billing - Due April 1

  • Billing Prep - Due February 27
  • Billing Prep - Due March 27

I am not sure, but it may have to do with the subtask also being recurring, though I am not sure. Does that make any sense?

Thanks,

Chris


#5

It’s almost what I expected it to be. The only difference is that, your subtasks are recurring. The only solution I can think of is to separate them into two different tasks, instead of the other being a subtask.



After completing both, it will look like this:

Perhaps you can leverage on tags to have more information (e.g. year and month so it’s easier to see which pairs are for which month)


Expense Reimbursement Reoccurring Task
#6

Hello Allen:

Thanks for helping out. I figured the nested recurring tasks were causing a problem. I will separate out.

Thanks again,

Chris


#7

I have a running tally of reasons why I think subtasks are inferior to sections/normal tasks 90% of the time, and this is another great reason. Recurring tasks can’t create recurring subtasks. Thanks for the smart discussion and to @Allen for testing it out.


To Subtask or not to Subtask
#8

Ooh @Todd_Cavanaugh you’ve peaked my interest with your theory! This sounds like a great topic for a new thread. If you’re willing to share your thoughts in a new thread, I think you’d spark an engaging conversation. :slight_smile:


#9

@Alexis, your wish is my command!

To Subtask or not to Subtask


#10

Hooray! Nice post :grinning:


#11

Hi @Chris_Guimbellot how did you go seperating the tasks out?

I had the same issue and ended up doing it slightly different which I documented here --> Expense Reimbursement

Would be interested to know how you cover the dependancies between the steps and knowing if the previous step is done.

Jason.


#12

A post was merged into an existing topic: Feature Request : in My Tasks, always show Project Name, even for subtasks