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The power of collaboration is amazing. But sometimes, when you’re working with other people on projects, ownership can get muddled. It’s hard to know who’s responsible for what task.

Google recently introduced action items to G Suite, which really streamlines the process of assigning tasks within your team. Now, assigning tasks is easier than ever before.

You can assign action items in two ways:

Use natural language processing (Docs only)

As you’re typing in Google Docs, if you type an action item like “Todo: Taylor to finish presentation” or “AI: Scott to schedule follow up meeting,” Docs will detect it and suggest an action item.

You can then choose to assign the suggested action item or dismiss it.

For action items to be suggested, the text must:

  • Mention someone’s name or email.
  • Mention someone with access to the file.

For more details, click here.

Manually assign action items (Sheets, Docs, Slides)

In Sheets, Docs, or Slides, you can manually assign an action item through a comment. Just insert a comment and mention your teammate’s email account.

action-items-screenshot-1

You’ll have the option to create an action item and assign it to them, which will send them a notification that there is a specific task that needs taking care of.

What happens when action items are assigned to someone?

This is what things look like from the other end:

action-items-screenshot-2

Now you can see a badge, which lets you know that there is an action item assigned to your account that needs your attention. This is how you will know when action items have been assigned to you, and that your supervisors or team members are relying on you to take care of a certain task.

Click here to watch this video on YouTube.

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9 Comments on "Now You Can Assign Action Items in Google Docs, Sheets, & Slides"

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Thomas Hind-Valentine
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When an action is assigned to a document it should add the action to a task list which can be accessed from the apps menu or somewhere, rather than just having a (1) next to the document and an email notification.
this way multiple action from different documents can be seen in one place

Ernest
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Ernest

You can see all docs in which you have an open action with: https://drive.google.com/drive/search?q=followup:actionitems

Thomas Hind-Valentine
Guest

Also it is quite temperamental, sometimes it will pick up an intended action and other times it wont.
This is still true even with AI: before the action

Aparra
Guest
Aparra

Can you assign an action item to more than one person?

Bala
Guest
Bala

Yes. use + sign and add the email ID

Adam
Guest
Adam

I don’t think that is the purpose. There is a check box beneath the dialogue window and it can be only assigned to one person despite how many recipients you + . Is it possible to assign (check more than one person) for the same comment?

Stephanie Caron
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Stephanie Caron

What happens when action items are assigned to someone? Your screenshot above shows an “Upcoming Tasks List” Doc…how is this Doc created? Is it automatically created in the assignee Google Drive?

Mohammed Joraid
Guest
Mohammed Joraid

I think that is just the doc’s title. For me, it seems he just created a doc and added a comment. It’s a nice use of existing features but I’m not sure if its feasible since I didn’t use it.

Ernest
Guest
Ernest

You can see all docs in which you have an open action with: https://drive.google.com/drive/search?q=followup:actionitems

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