Blog Post

The Qrew Blog

Discussion about all the "Updates" customers didn't ask for...

MeredithMoore5's avatar
Qrew Assistant Captain
4 years ago
Ok, I know for a fact that there are hundreds of feature tickets in the QB Dev Team queue that customers have asked for, as active users of the system. I feel like the endless stream of restrictive, useless, and annoying updates, have probably never been on that list.

Taking away simple things like Automations, ending the use of JavaScript in Rich Text fields, the dang "beta" report formatting that, if you accidentally click, is like herpes on your system, affecting every report you have... I mean REALLY????

We never asked for this. We do not want more limitations. How can you not see that? Do you not use the system? 

We want MORE space, MORE features, MORE flexibility, or maybe just the features that we have been asking for.

I urge other users to write below and add their comments to this thread. Maybe they will hear us. Because obviously having virtual Empowers has taken them away from hearing, from our own faces, what we really want and need.

QuickBase Girl
Published 4 years ago
Version 1.0


  • I have been feeling the same way. It feels to me like Pipelines has become a major priority and basics like a new form builder never seem to be discussed. If all this pipeline energy were put into making the integration with Zapier better, QuickBase could have gotten further faster. Are they really going to re-create every possible integration that already existing in Zapier? 

    Form builder - Go take a look at Cognito Forms for a good idea of where they need to go in my opinion.

    I also am not sure about the new reports. Feels like more clicks.

    Also how about some actual email integration. I built a CRM but have to jump through hoops with external systems for true two-way communication via email which is a staple of any CRM.  Could add texting to this also.

    Steve Laurel
    • AlanTuring's avatar
      Qrew Trainee
      Pipelines is basically Zapier that is why they purchased it. Pipelines is just a really really bad version of Zapier haha.
      - cannot run individual pipeline steps for testing
      - cannot free write code for data manipulation
      - cannot jointly work on pipelines (unless putting on a user that multiple people have the info to)
      - the auto save feature bugs out a lot 
      - their customer support on pipelines is as useful as raking your yard with a fork
      - exporting and importing YAML is miserable, even after changing your account slugs

      I could go on forever, but yes you can get everything done in Pipelines that Zapier can do. In an annoying and inefficient manner.

      Alan Turing
  • What she said.

    Alan Turing
  • Can we add the rebranding to this list :). I haven't used QB for too long, but it seemed like when I first joined all everyone could talk about was how amazing QB was because of their dedication to their end users (and it seemed that way from my perspective). I agree that lately it has been an endless string of decisions that seem to not take any of their customers in mind.

    Maybe we can add the fact that they also just randomly switched our sales reps on us?

    Mike Tamoush
    • MeredithMoore's avatar
      Qrew Cadet
      Word to this. I KNOW they spent time and money on that rebranding. And everyone I know is like "ok, that was unnecessary..." 

      Like "Hello QB Leadership" We are fine with the purple "Q" just work on the requested feature "Queue", or bug "Queue".  Spend your time and money on the product, not the marketing flash.

      Meredith Moore
  • KimG's avatar
    Qrew Cadet
    I'm relatively new to QB, and not an IT person, but I did build our entire CRM system in QB.  I could set up the automations relatively easily. 

    However, I have yet to figure out Pipelines.  I wish there were more examples because I just don't get it.  I've been through a few Pipelines trainings which either only scratched the surface or breezed through parts I wasn't able to follow.  I just got a survey about Pipelines that clearly showed me why I'm so lost.  The survey was clearly not made for someone of my IT skills.

    I would love to be able to schedule outbound emails to outside contacts more easily.  I would love to be able to figure out how to integrate with MailChimp through Pipelines. I would love to be able to create a mail merge-type Google doc to create price quotes without needing a third party system.  If I can create an email with merge terms, how come I can't do the same to a Word or Google doc?

    I also don't think the rebranding was necessary or useful (and I technically am a marketing person.)

    Kim Gardner
    • JohnRogers's avatar
      Qrew Member

      What email server do you use? gmail, outlook? I can try and build it for you in my free time and send you the example.

      John Rogers
      • KimG's avatar
        Qrew Cadet
        Hi John,

        We use gmail, but we don't have QB configured to send through our own email.  I have created a workaround to send scheduled emails through an automation.  I have four sales follow up emails, sent to customers at 1 week, one month, 6 months and 1 year from a purchase of our equipment.  The dates are set by an automation triggered by an event (the purchase).  Then a daily automation looks to see if today's date = the scheduled date, and if so,  a checkbox is checked, which then triggers the email send.  It's a bit convoluted, but works.  Fortunately I'm not building new scheduled emails that frequently because it shouldn't have to be this complicated.  

        I appreciate your offer to help, but for now this is working for us.

        Kim Gardner
  • Quickbase Girl,

    I can't agree more! I hear the frustration and know how it feels. It seems like there is a lot of incentive to come up with some really great solutions. I feel like the Quickbase employees I talk with are invested in the product and want to provide a good solution. The days of the Type Ahead Search picker seem to be gone - that change made a huge difference, as an example.

    From my perspective, they are overwhelmed with the integration with Pipelines and there is little to no movement in any core product development. It seems like it has been this way since the purchase of Pipelines. Maybe they have a steep learning curve happening or something. 

    I want to note the response from the Quickbase Support Team has improved for me. I don't feel like I get the "well it works for us" run around. 

    I would like to see some of the UserVoice requests get handled on a regular basis. Like one per month or one per quarter.
    I would also like to see more development on the Administrator side. Like not having to click 6 rows of little green checkboxes for each table one at a time. You can select all, or you can select one at a time but you cannot select all and unselect one or two. That is a lot of clicks. 
    I never really embraced the JavaScript hack and don't mind it going away, we have been able to leverage URL-formulas and Rich-Text formulas to get what we need. Although I will miss the IOL to expand and collapse all the sections on a form, Dan Diebold made something simple and very useful! 
    Being able to style a form, or align fields to a grid on a form would help.
    Including HTML characters when exporting a Rich Text field to csv is not a feature.
    The never ending Webhook error that never clears. Oh and no dev in Webhooks because Pipelines is the new Webhook, is not acceptable as a reason why the feature will remain broken.

    On a plus of new development:
    Dashboards are interesting but not really useful yet.
    The Form rules applied to Grid Edit is looking functional. Although changing every Grid Edit report to the same set columns is not so good as a default.
    Moving away from XML into JSON will be nice when it is done. Maybe we need more demos?

    I appreciate your post and have placed the ideas that came to mind to add my support. I want this product to be successful as a cloud service. 

    Jim Harrison
    Portland, OR

    Jim Harrison
    transparency = knowledge + understanding : The Scrum Dudes
    • MarkShnier__You's avatar
      Icon for Qrew Legend rankQrew Legend
      At the risk of going further down the rabbit hole as to whether Quickbase is delivering features that are needed by users, I would like to point out that they cranked out a ton of great features in the April Release.

      I know that we all need to get used to the new table reports, but that is being done with recognition that a new technology was needed for table reports to allow for enhanced performance on large record sets and the future ability we all hope to see for in line editing, ie editing without needing to go to Grid Edit mode.  That has been talked about at past EMPOWERs and now they have a platform which can support that.

      The April release also has the ability to do calculations between columns on summary reports.  I would argue that feature is a foundational change to QuickBase abilities.   How many times has that question come up on this forum and the answers we have to provide to "newbie" users are that they need to set up (and maintain through Automations) parent tables to roll up the summary totals in order to be able to do the calculations. Of course, that meant it was impossible for many who did not have the skills or the desire to expend that much effort.   And that also meant that you had to carefully plan out the exact summary levels you needed in advance in order to do the calculations, and you couldn't just make a report on the fly.  So that's a hit for me in this release.  I tried it in Beta and it worked well and was fairly intuitive to use.

      It's good to see that they are starting to roll out Platform Analytics - the ability to see which apps are being used by which users.  It sounds like a partial feature set with the promise to add enhancements in Q2 and Q3. So obviously they must have a dedicated development team assigned to see that though to completion this year.  

      The whole area of embedding iframes seems to have been resolved.  Many of us were using a sort of cheat to use the Kirk Trachy's Magic buttons technique to embed You tube Videos or other content such as the google document previewer on forms.  To their credit (after listening to customers), they must have reconciled their need to achieve a certain security certification level of the platform with the desire of users to extend functionality with iframes.   Hopefully that will allow Kirk to re-enable his Magic Buttons code of how to embed videos and document previews in a future release of his Magic Buttons app. 

      There is other useful stuff to like being able to natively pop up a no code pop up window as opposed to a new tab.  That is probably in response to the intention to block javascript later in the year. 

      Plus, of course, more Pipelines features as they are dedicated to improving them. 

      So, a great release, I would say.  EMPOWER is coming in a couple of months, so that will be a a chance for Quickbase Management to review what features they delivered in the last year  and talk about the road map ahead for the rest of 2021.

      Mark Shnier (YQC)
      Quick Base Solution Provider
      Your Quick Base Coach
      • MeredithMoore5's avatar
        Qrew Assistant Captain

        Glad they have made updates. Now if they could just make updates without taking AWAY things, that would be awesome.

        Some of the improvements they have made mean that there would need to be a full rework of apps, and possibly entire realms. It makes a person think, "Humm, should I spend all this time reworking everything I have on this platform that doesn't seem to care about how the end-user actually uses it, OR do I transfer it to something else like AWS, eat the heavy cost now, and have it on a platform that, although harder to use, won't ruin / restrict my app functionality?".

        Can customers choose if they need the most secure everything and have restrictions? I know most of my realms have been, and will be, just fine without NASA level security. But sure, give the CHOICE. That would be fine. But don't just knock out perceived insecurities just because 2% of your clients need all the security certifications on the dang planet. 

        "... we all need to get used to the new table reports, but that is being done with recognition that a new technology was needed for table reports to allow for enhanced performance on large record sets..."

        Yeah, great. Still like the old format better. Personal preference. And that is the thing. How about you just leave it up to the customer on how they want to see things? How about adding some report css styling options? Wow! now that would be something! I want the header Red. I want the columns all the same size. I want to make the last column Blue. I want the font to be h5. I want my gridlines white. Why can't I do this unless I hack the css through an Exact form? Why can't I make another page my table's home page? So many other things as far as formatting and report improvements that I feel are much more useful.

        Oh, and speaking of large data sets... let's talk about table limits. WTH? How many of your clients would pay anything just to get more table space? This BS limit has to go. If you are wanting to be Enterprise, than you HAVE to work this out. 

        "... they are starting to roll out Platform Analytics - the ability to see which apps are being used by which users."
        Ok, where to get stated on this... I think this request has been on the stack since the dark ages, so I don't really know how to applaud this one. I know as part of that featured request, customers would like to know if someone messed with a field's code, and when (like full history). What fields are being used, by whom (maybe even what their role is). Who uploaded data, when, how (full history)? Currently if some "Bozo Bob" goes in and changes the code on a field, and I don't know about it, I don't know what is going on, who did it, or when they did it. It is just broken, and that is all I know. That is a big problem.

        "To their credit (after listening to customers), they must have reconciled their need to achieve a certain security certification level of the platform with the desire of users to extend functionality with iframes."
        I am glad for this reversal, as I probably would have just burned the place to the ground if they had taken this away. SOOOOO many apps rely on the wonderful code that Kirk has given us. Again, if this is just a security thing, let it go. Let us keep our iframes, colored buttons, and icons. I don't know if they don't understand how much this kind of code is used or if they are just trying to start a riot, but this will surely do the latter. Same for nixing or IOL. If you want to piss us all off, just play with our code that were work arounds for features that QB didn't have to begin with. Again, SOOOO many forms, buttons, etc have this code in it, not because we wanted to spend hours learning the ways of Dan, but because we HAD to in order to make our apps work the way we NEED them to. If QB kills any of this without a damn good and easy replacement, there will be an absolute riot. So you can just bring that up to the Dev Team to tread very carefully on this.

        "There is other useful stuff to like being able to natively pop up a no code pop up window as opposed to a new tab.  That is probably in response to the intention to block javascript later in the year."
        Yeah, once again, how do I applaud this? Good? 
        Yeay? You are taking away a feature that we use. They better have a replacement. Duh. You also could already do that natively in forms with "display a message" for the most part, soooo trying to figure out why this would be such a "wow". Also hoping that it is not just something that is annoying and that we have the choice of conditionally displaying it.

        "Plus, of course, more Pipelines features as they are dedicated to improving them."
        I will have to agree with you that Pipelines is getting better. Need a lot more documentation and examples on it (like a LOT more), but all-in-all it seems to be going in the right direction. The visuals really need to be condensed, and it would be nice to be able to have a customizable title/description for each step that shows when it is collapsed  but all in, it is getting better. However it is not a reason to kill Automations. Automations still have their place. I think is going to anger many, many people when you start messing with these. Honestly, until you have a much larger library of learning and forum posts on Pipelines, Automations need to be left alone.

        AllI am saying is that they best talk to all their customers, not just their biggest ones, before they start making these "kill feature" announcements. They may be unprepared for the backlash at EMPOWER...

        QuickBase Girl