Business logic

Formulas and calculations

Quickbase has a formula language that is optimized for the Quickbase platform. This formula language supports 196 functions across 15 categories (date, time, text, math, data aggregation, duration, etc.). Local and global variables are supported. Formulas can reference nearly any field or record in an app via lookups, summaries and formula queries. The Quickbase formula language is expressed in common language terms and should be familiar for those with experience in Excel. With business developers in mind, the functions are intuitively named, fields are referenced by user-defined labels, there is not strict data typing, expressions use common operators, and syntax is minimal.

Quickbase formulas drive calculations, workflow, conditional logic, triggers (like notifications), report filtering, data validation, customized, rich-text display of data via in-line CSS and RBAC security. Formulas are used in formula fields, custom data rules, reports, charts, row colorization and dynamic permissions (via fields). Formulas have their own API call and can be called from JavaScript or server-side solutions to determine their values, which is helpful to developers who want to keep core logic in Quickbase and use results externally. Reference lists and dependency diagrams are generated to help builders manage formula references across their apps.

The formula language supports search and auto-complete. A drop down list is provided in Formula Builder to find fields and functions in context. The field list filters automatically when users start typing. Function structures are filled when selected. The Formula Builder color codes key words, provides line numbers, maintains indenting and spacing for complex formulas, and checks syntax before saving formulas.

Workflow and automations


It is possible to incorporate images and content into applications through the File Attachment field, which can host any file type. File properties (e.g. name, extension, presence) can be used in formulas to drive status, workflow and permissions. Image files are natively previewed in thumbnail format. Documents can be embedded on a form using an iFrame setting in URL fields.

To access content-management systems, developers should use the Quickbase Pipelines builder to process files stored externally. Quickbase supports direct channels to CMS like Box, Dropbox, DocuSign, Formstack Documents, Google Docs, Google Drive, Google Sheets, MSFT Outlook, MSFT SharePoint, MSFT Teams and OneDrive.

Beyond sending PDF or CSV versions of reports, document output is not a native feature on the Quickbase platform. To achieve this functionality and product documents directly from Quickbase data, QSPs are a great resource for custom and add-on solutions.


Notifications can be triggered on any record add, modify or delete operation when their trigger conditions are met. Quickbase has a native email notification engine that sends messages that contain context-specific data, record forms or reports. More custom notification content can be built with HTML/CSS where HTML can be dynamically created based on content in the triggering record.

Notifications align with RBAC to ensure that Quickbase users, based on their role, are seeing and have access to the appropriate information. For example, a report to be sent to all users of an application weekly and Quickbase will automatically send a personalized version of the report to each user to ensure that each recipient sees only what they are supposed to. The platform takes care of this personalization, without the builder needing to think about permissions.

Notifications can be tailored in specific ways. For platform security measures, the “from” field in a notification email is always Quickbase, but the “reply to” can be customized to any user in the application. Notifications can be sent to users, batches of users or a distribution list. Builders can enable end users to configure their own email notifications. While creating notification triggers, developers can create customization options, such as an opt-out, by including links in the email that store a user's preference in the Quickbase application. SMS can be sent to the email gateway of the provider. Additionally, notifications can be sent through more channels with Pipelines. Channels for specific email services like Outlook, Gmail & Mailgun are supported as well as Twilio (SMS), PushBullet, Slack and MSFT Teams. Builders can leverage the same flexible triggers and dynamic content through channels as available on the native Quickbase platform.