How SmartSuite is solving all of the Airtable pain points

Hey Community,

First off, I’d like to thank @ScottWorld for inviting me here to post!

My name is Avi and I’m the VP of Partnerships at SmartSuite. SmartSuite is a work management platform that looks and feels like Airtable but we tried to address many of the pain points and we listen to our customers & partners very carefully to address any pain points they might have.

@ScottWorld and I have been going back and forth recently on some of the Airtable pain points that we have been able to solve and @ScottWorld has been encouraging me to post them here and see what the community thinks + what other Airtable pain points can we solve.

  1. In SmartSuite you can link records across the entire platform without having to sync bases etc.
  2. SmartSuite has a “mywork” section that will show all of a users tasks from across the platform in one place.
  3. SmartSuite sends an email and in-app notification every time there’s an error with an automation
  4. We are working on the ability to purchase more automations and will have a very exciting announcement to make in the coming weeks about the number of records we can handle. Stay tuned!!
  5. Dynamic choices in linked record fields is live in SmartSuite! Feel free to check out this video to learn more how this works.
  6. SmartSuite has a SmartDoc filed type that allows rich text on any record
  7. SmartSuite has dashboards built into the product as a view type
  8. SmartSuite has permission down to the filed level

If you’d like to learn more about SmartSuite please feel free to give us a try and let us know what you think and how we can improve.


Welcome to the community, @Avi!

It’s great that somebody is working on solving the Airtable pain points (which seem to be getting larger & more frequent).

Your link for dynamic choices in linked record fields did not make it into your post above – it may have restricted the number of links you could post since you are a new user.

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Thanks @ScottWorld! I just added it in there! Top requested Airtable feature lands at SmartSuite - Dynamic filters - YouTube

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Dynamic filters is fantastic, and well executed!


Some others from personal experience:

  • Better graphing: Add multiple series to a graph. Set a target line on a graph. Pull in data from a different base to show on a graph
  • many more field types, esp. that relate to project management (e.g. time range, yes/no, sub-tasks, due date). As i understand dependencies coming soon
  • add a column via the API
  • Send an email from within a record and have the email convo logged as comments against that record

Its a bit like if Airtable ate


Thanks @RussellBishop. Any other Airtable pain points we can work on?

Yup @tomhalloran That’s absolutely correct. SmartSuite covers all of those. Thank you for sharing!

So, does SmartSuite not currently have an option for setting dependencies between records? A lot of what I’m seeing here is very compelling, but not having dependencies would be a dealbreaker in terms of our org moving off Airtable to SmartSuite.

As a side note … We do custom manufacturing/fabrication. We have up to thousands of physical components that need to be inventoried, detailed, and tracked per project. Would love to see some example use cases that address work that happens in the physical world, not just knowledge work. Even your Construction Industry sample solutions don’t show anything about material inventory management.

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@liz dependencies is next on our product road map. We are set to release it within the next month or so.

I’m checking on the use case you mention above to see if we have anyone who can share a video or use case.

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BTW another thing that’s coming up is SmartSuite allows users to group public views using View Folders!

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Hi @liz and @Avi
This is a great concern for anyone working with BOM (Bill of Materials) or project inventory structures. My short answer (opinion)… this is totally doable in SmartSuite, today. I’ll explain why too. I’ve seen a few ways to tackle this in Airtable and SmartSuite and I prefer a method that doesn’t rely on the record dependency of the software. I prefer to have a few fields to specify and distinguish parent/child relationships within a BOM or inventory. By using a “BOM level” attribute combined with part numbers and parent part numbers for assemblies, this would structure very similar to a more dedicated ERP system, like Oracle. I say this because I’ve done just that. I’ve pulled inventory from Oracle into Airtable, using this method, for project trackers in the past. With SmartSuite having a very similar relational database structure to Airtable, I don’t see any issues using this method. If you are use Airtable or SmartSuite today with this method and later down the road, after your business grows, and you need an Oracle, SAP, or even just a SQL db (there are pros/cons here), you can more easily upload your existing inventory data because of this structure. All this to say, if you are considering the switch to SmartSuite, I’d say go for it. It’s a great platform with a more well-rounded tool set.

If you have specific questions, or would like to dive deeper into this use case, and maybe even hear how I’ve helped others with this very same problem, I’d be happy to chat. Feel free to either reply here or you can email me (


Hi Chris, Thanks for sharing a bit about your approach! My first comment was mixing two unrelated topics… We use dependencies between records for waterfall-style scheduling and gantt charts of our activities. Like you, we use parent/child records for assemblies & parts, but your setup sounds a lot more scalable than ours. We’re not in a position to hire outside consultants at the moment, but I saved your info and hopefully I can reach out in the not-too-distant future.

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@Avi , I played with it a little. This seems like the Airtable killer we’ve been waiting for.
How do you work with (1) synching different bases (2) allowing external editors have access to limited data with edit permissions?

Hi @Appleapi7
To answer the syncing different bases question… The way SmartSuite has structured their linking, you specify the solution (base) and then app (table). There is no “syncing” as you can just link to any solution/app combination you need to. This reduces the number of tables you need to have in a solution, therefore making them cleaner.
As for the external editors, there is a way to do this today that allows external people to update data, and I’ll let @Avi fill in any gaps that I may have missed, or that are on the roadmap. If you can allow a user to have a Guest role (similar to Read-only in Airtable so still free) but with more ability, then the user is able to view and comment on records they’ve been assigned through the Assigned To field. Guests can also change the status and checklist fields from their My Work panel and in both the Record or Grid View for the records/checklist items they are assigned to.


Hi @liz
No worries and I totally understand the need to solve both, a good way to schedule and also a good structure for an inventory system. Full disclosure, I made the assumption you didn’t currently have field attributes in place to specify an inventory or BOM structure. If you do, that is great and either way, if the system you have in place is working for your organization, that is the most important thing. I also totally understand managing cashflow and not quite to the place to hire an outside consultant. If you’d like, I’m happy to have a short call, pro-bono, to go over where you are and offer any tips that may help. That way, when you do get to point that you need/want to improve your structures, it may be easier to work with and cost less. Food for thought.
As for the waterfall-style scheduling and gantt charts, I know this is on SmartSuite’s roadmap and I’ll let @Avi specify the details on this.

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I started using SmartSuite for project management instead of Clickup, but just preferred Clickup’s UI especially the kanban view which was much more compact. And having to click Save all the time got annoying instead of autosave and undo like most modern web apps.

What about GDPR?

Airtable is not GDPR compliant, does SmartSuite store data in the EU, or allows doing so?

Hi @Avi!

The dynamic filtering is awesome!

We’ve only been begging Airtable to give us this feature for 10 years!

I think I’m going to have to seriously start exploring SmartSuite from this point forward… you guys are just way more in touch with your customers’ needs than Airtable is.

And by “way more in touch”, I mean you guys are 100% in touch whereas Airtable is (and has always been) 0% in touch.

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How old is SmartSuite? Can I get a little bit of history of the company please?

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Hey @kls06541 ,

SmartSuite launched at the start of 2022, although the product started development a couple year prior to that. Here is a good video that goes over some of the history and the founder’s story: Why SmartSuite CEO, Jon Darbyshire Spent $12.5m on New MVP, and Exited for $200m - YouTube

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