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Smartsheet: a spreadsheet-based tool for easy project management

Smartsheet: a spreadsheet-based tool for easy project management

Competing with widely used task management tools such as Asana and Trello, Smartsheet has gained traction in a wide range of companies. This is how the cloud-based app works and why it’s popular.

Smartsheet is a flexible, spreadsheet-focused work management tool designed to track team projects. Launched in 2006, it has 8 million users (nearly 1 million of whom pay) and is implemented by nearly 100,000 companies, from Google and Netflix to the US General Services Administration.

Its success stems from its ability to attract a wide range of business users, especially project managers, according to Chris Marsh, research director at 451 Research, part of S&P Global Market Intelligence. For Smartsheet in Bellevue, Washington This means combining a familiar spreadsheet format with more comprehensive collaboration and work management capabilities.

How does Smartsheet work?

Working in the Smartsheet focuses on «sheets» that contain information about a particular project or projects.

In each sheet, users can include a variety of details about a project, such as a description, status, deadlines, and which workers have been assigned to complete a task. Users can attach files, add comments, request updates, among other options.

There are several ways to view sheets, from a spreadsheet-like grid view that has long been the center of the Smartsheet product, to Kanban-style cards, Gantt charts, and calendar views.

The smart blade

View the Smartsheet dashboard.

Users can generate custom reports that collect data from sources in multiple sheets, allowing an overview of sales activity in a team, for example. Dashboards can also be created to provide a high-level overview of data in sheets, combining widgets such as charts, values, and reports.

Smartsheet offers a variety of integrations with other business applications, including productivity and collaboration Microsoft teams , Google Workspace , Atlassian turns , ServiceNow and Sales force .

Workflow automation can be configured with a variety of triggers and actions, such as multi-step approval processes or slack peer notifications of an imminent deadline.

Smartsheet also offers a code-free platform, WorkApps . Introduced in 2020, WorkApps allows users to create simple applications by wrapping information from sheets, forms and dashboards in a simple interface.

Smartsheet price

Although Smartsheet offers a free 30-day trial period, there is no freemium option; all its levels have a monthly or annual subscription cost. Individual subscribers pay $ 14 per month (when billed annually), providing access to all sheet «views», automated workflows, work applications (access only), and other features, although there is a limit to the number of sheets , reports and dashboards.

The enterprise level, at $ 25 per user per month, increases the number of accessible sheets to 100 per user, removes the dashboard and report limit, and offers additional features such as custom branding.

Business users, who can negotiate a customized charging plan based on the number of users and specific needs, have access to the full range of management controls, such as single sign-on and business access control, and can create workstation applications. customized.

Smartsheet work applications
The smart blade

Smartsheet’s code-free platform, WorkApps, allows users to create their own simple applications.

A new premium pricing plan, Smartsheet Advance , was presented at this summer’s Engage event. Available to business customers, Advance includes three levels: Silver, Gold and Platinum, which offer access to a variety of additional features. This includes granular management of information exchange; and the ability to upload data, synchronize, and share Smartsheet data with business applications such as Salesforce and Microsoft Dynamics 365.

What’s next for Smartsheet?

Although it has similarities to more traditional project management applications, Smartsheet is part of a new generation of work management tools that includes Airtable, Asana, Monday.com, Workfront and Wrike. It also faces competition from major technology players, namely Microsoft and Google, which have similar products.

Smartsheet has clearly appeared in Forrester’s recent report on collaborative tools, » Forrester Wave: Collaborative Work Management Tools, Fourth Quarter 2020 «with strong qualifications for automation capabilities. The company’s vision and roadmap were also considered strengths.

Smartsheet, which solicited an initial public offering in 2018, raising $ 150 million, has seen strong growth in recent years, gaining ground with a variety of smaller, commercial-sized organizations. Revenues reached $ 385.5 million in fiscal year 2021, an increase of 42% year-over-year, with the largest individual customer offerings worth more than $ 3 million. The company’s latest quarterly financial results showed a 68% increase among customers spending $ 100,000 a year, an indication of widespread use within organizations.

The company expanded its workforce rapidly; it now has over 2,100 employees, up from 460 at the beginning of 2017.

And in another sign of maturity, Smartsheet has become increasingly competitive, acquiring four IPO companies, including Brandfolder, a digital asset management software provider, for $ 155 million last year.