How to Create and Use Data Table Smartsheet (Step-by-Step)

September 26, 2023 737 views

In the fast-paced world of work management, finding the right tools to streamline processes and boost productivity is paramount. Smartsheet, with its dynamic capabilities, has been a go-to platform for teams aiming to plan, track, automate, and report on their work effectively. But with the ever-evolving tech landscape, many have begun to question whether it's still a worthwhile choice. So, let's embark on a journey to demystify Smartsheet's data tables.

Part 1: What is Smartsheet Data Table?

Smartsheet is a dynamic and versatile work management platform designed to empower teams in their daily operations. It serves as a collaborative hub where teams can plan, track, automate, and report on various work processes efficiently. With a user-friendly interface and a robust set of features, Smartsheet has gained popularity across industries as a go-to solution for enhancing productivity and project management.


  • Collaborative Workspaces: Smartsheet offers collaborative workspaces where team members can easily collaborate, share documents, and communicate in real-time. This fosters seamless teamwork, ensuring everyone stays on the same page.

  • Grid View: The grid view in Smartsheet resembles a spreadsheet, making it familiar and easy to use. It's perfect for managing tasks, projects, and data tables, allowing you to organize information efficiently.

  • Data Tables: Smartsheet's data tables provide a structured way to organize, analyze, and visualize data. These tables are at the heart of many work processes, helping teams make data-driven decisions.

  • Automation: Smartsheet enables automation through workflows, alerts, and reminders, reducing manual tasks and ensuring processes run smoothly.

  • Gantt Charts: Gantt charts offer a visual way to plan and track projects, making it easy to manage timelines and dependencies.

As we delve deeper into Smartsheet, we'll explore its data table feature in detail, helping you unlock its potential for more effective work management.

Part 2: How to Create a Smartsheet Data Table

Creating a Smartsheet data table is an essential skill for effective work management. Follow these steps to get started:

Step 1: Log in to Smartsheet

  • Open your web browser and go to the Smartsheet login page.

  • Enter your credentials (email and password) and click "Log In" to access your Smartsheet account.

Step 2: Create a New Sheet

  • Once you're in your Smartsheet account, click on the "+ New" button located on the left sidebar.

  • Choose the "Sheet" option from the dropdown menu.

Step 3: Set Up Your Data Table

  • Give your new sheet a name that clearly represents the data table you intend to create.

  • You'll be presented with a blank grid. This is your data table.

  • Start populating the rows and columns with your data. Click on a cell, type your data, and press "Enter" to move to the next cell.

  • You can add and customize columns to match your data's structure. To do this, right-click

  • on the column header and select "Insert Column Left" or "Insert Column Right."

Step 4: Save Your Data Table

  • Remember to save your work by clicking the "Save" button in the upper left corner. Smartsheet automatically saves changes as you work, but it's a good practice to save manually as well.


  • Use Consistent Formatting: Maintain a consistent formatting style for your data table, including font sizes, colors, and cell borders, to enhance readability.

  • Leverage Formulas: Smartsheet supports formulas, so take advantage of them to perform calculations within your data table.

  • Share and Collaborate: Collaborate with team members by sharing your data table with them. You can control their access and permissions to ensure data security.

  • Use Filters: Apply filters to your data table to easily sort and analyze specific subsets of data.

  • Learn Keyboard Shortcuts: Smartsheet offers keyboard shortcuts for various functions, which can save you time and improve efficiency.

Difficulty Ranking (Based on Experience):

The difficulty of creating a Smartsheet data table largely depends on your familiarity with spreadsheet software. For users with prior experience in Excel or similar tools, the initial setup (Steps 1 and 2) is usually straightforward. However, customizing and optimizing your data table (Step 3) may require more time and practice, especially when using advanced features. Beginners might find the initial setup more challenging, but Smartsheet's user-friendly interface makes the learning curve manageable.

Part 3: How to Connect a Sheet to a Smartsheet Data Table?

Connecting a sheet to a Smartsheet data table allows you to link and display data from the data table within a sheet. This can be useful for consolidating information or creating reports. Here's a step-by-step guide:

Step 1: Select the table

  • Go to the sheet you want to connect with a DataTable.

  • Click on the "Connections" menu, then select "Connect to a DataTable."

Step 2: Filter your data

  • Choose "Add & Update Mode."

  • Select the DataTable you want to use.

  • Apply filtering criteria (at least one) to limit the data synced from the DataTable to your sheet.

  • You can set multiple criteria based on the field type.

Step 3: Map data from the DataTable into a sheet

  • Toggle on the fields you want to map.

  • Match these fields to sheet columns, even if their names differ.

  • A new column called "DataTable Record ID" is added to your sheet to track rows from the DataTable.

  • Click "Next" to proceed.

Step 4: Set connection behaviors

  • Choose behavior options:

  • Add rows as they are added to the DataTable.

  • Update rows as they change in the DataTable.

  • Remove rows that no longer match the filter criteria.

  • Click "Next" when your desired behaviors are set.

Step 5: Review the connection

  • Review the connection settings and make changes if needed by selecting "Back."

  • Click "Create" to complete the configuration.



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Part 4: Best Alternative to Smartsheet - WPS Office

WPS Office is a modernized, powerful office suite of applications that goes beyond traditional office tools. While it excels at organizing and processing data, it also offers robust features for planning and managing events. One standout feature of WPS Office is its extensive collection of free scheduling templates. These templates are invaluable for users seeking efficient solutions to plan and manage events effortlessly. You can explore these templates at WPS Office Templates.

Advantages of WPS Office:

  • Free Download and Usage: One of the most significant advantages of WPS Office is that it's available for free. You can access and use essential office tools like Word, Excel, and PowerPoint without any cost.

  • Powerful PDF Toolkit: WPS Office offers a comprehensive PDF toolkit, enabling you to create, edit, convert, and secure PDF documents with ease.

  • Rich Template Store: The software boasts a rich collection of templates for various purposes, including scheduling, reports, resumes, and more. This vast template store simplifies the document creation process.

  • Rich Functions: WPS Office provides a wide range of functions within its applications, rivaling even the most popular office suites on the market. You can perform complex tasks without the need for additional software.

My Experience with WPS Office:

Having used WPS Office extensively, I can confidently say that it's a worthy alternative to Smartsheet for many users. Its free availability and comprehensive feature set make it accessible to a wide audience. In comparison to Smartsheet, WPS Office stands out with its offline office suite capabilities, including Word, Excel, and PowerPoint, as well as its rich template store, which simplifies document creation.

WPS Office is ideal for individuals and teams who need a versatile office suite for tasks ranging from data analysis and document processing to event planning and management. Its lightweight nature ensures that it doesn't burden your system, making it suitable for various devices and user levels.


1. How do I filter based on a date field in my Data Table?

To filter based on a date field in your Smartsheet Data Table, follow these steps:

  • Click on the column header containing the date field you want to filter.

  • In the dropdown menu that appears, select "Filter."

  • Choose your desired date filter criteria, such as "Before," "After," or a specific date range.

  • Apply the filter, and the Data Table will display only the rows that meet your selected date criteria.

2. Can I collaborate on a Smartsheet Data Table with team members in real-time?

Yes, Smartsheet allows real-time collaboration on Data Tables. You can share your DataTable with team members, assign tasks, and work together simultaneously. Any changes made by team members will be instantly visible to all collaborators.

3. Is there a way to automate data entry into a Smartsheet Data Table?

Smartsheet provides automation capabilities through workflows. You can set up rules and triggers to automate data entry, update rows, and perform various actions based on specific conditions. This feature streamlines your data management processes and reduces manual data entry efforts.

Conclusion: Creating and Using Data Table Smartsheet

In this comprehensive article, we've explored the world of work management, focusing on the utilization of data tables in Smartsheet. We began by introducing Smartsheet as a dynamic platform for teams to streamline their work processes efficiently.

However, a standout alternative to Smartsheet emerged on our radar – WPS Office. This modern and powerful office suite goes beyond conventional office tools. Not only does it empower you to organize and process data effectively, but it also equips you to plan and manage events seamlessly. With a vast collection of free scheduling templates, a powerful PDF toolkit, rich functions, lightweight performance, support for online documents, and a focus on safety and stability, WPS Office offers a compelling package.

15 years of office industry experience, tech lover and copywriter. Follow me for product reviews, comparisons, and recommendations for new apps and software.