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Making the timeline maker more productive

Headshot of article author Craig Maas

Leading up to and through the October Wave 2020 release, we’ve been working hard to extend the configuration capabilities for the timeline control in the new Power Apps form designer experience. The intent of our work has been to expose configuration that is used to enable our out-of-box timeline experience, which will in turn empower you, as our makers, to adjust the experience to best suit your business scenarios.

We still have a ways to go, but we’re getting closer and want to make sure we’re raising awareness about the new potential we’re unlocking.

Currently, you’re able to use the new form designer to configure each instance of the timeline on your form. Start by adding the timeline component to any entity form with intuitive drag-and-drop functionality:

Once the timeline control is on your form, you have quick access to your configuration options. Of course, we have the existing configuration options, but we’ve redesigned and laid out everything in an easier-to-understand format.

We’ve also added new options, such as the ability to disable the search bar:

As you move down the configuration, you’ll see another new addition – You now have the ability to: 

    • load the timeline with all the records expanded
    • choose to enable or disable the “What you’ve missed” summary notification
    • easily see every type of available activity record with clear check marks to show whether they’re enabled for this timeline

The following new configuration functionality allows for quick customization of  activities from which you can create new records using the timeline from a list that was previously hardcoded.

We also heard your feedback on the status tags for some activities, that they’re unnecessary and add noise instead of clarity, so you’re now able to disable the display of status tags on certain record types.

By clicking on an activity, you can:

    • enable and disable different types of records
    • add an activity to the +New menu
    • disable display tags on certain record types

As we arrive at the last of our current configuration items, you can see that there are a number of new options available here.  You can now:

    • Change the type of rollup data displayed for account, contact, and opportunity entity form. This means if you find accounts that are showing too many related records on the timeline, you can simplify what you see by setting your rollup to related or none. Learn more about rollup types.
    •  Choose which date to use for the Notes and Posts on your timeline.  If you’re tired of your post disappearing down the timeline even when there are replies, then change the sorting to use Modified On, and it will return to the top of the timeline each time anyone replies!
    • Add customized configuration for your rich text notes by providing a link to your personalized rich text editor web resource.

More configuration options will be available soon on the designer, including the ability to:

    • Set the default filters you want applied to the timeline. You can still allow users access to clear filters or apply different filters if you wish, but each time the timeline is reloaded, the default filters are applied.
    • Remove filters you never need on a timeline from the filter pane. This will allow your users to focus on the filters that matter most.

We’re working on even more to come in the future. We’ll be bringing you:

    • A visualization of each type of timeline record that lets you hide or show labels for every field – even for Notes and Posts
    • The option to show all the fields you add in the body of your card form configuration instead of only the top three, and the ability to choose how to show that data, either when the record is expanded or all the time.

We hope you’ve found this review of the new and planned capabilities useful. Thank you to everyone who submitted ideas, raised support tickets,  attended our webinars, and event sessions – your voices are being heard and turned into action. Please keep providing us with your feedback and opinions!  Until next time, we’re listening!

Learn more in our timeline documentation.
Learn more about rollup types.