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View versus Edit access to custom fields


Level 1


In so many situations there is a need to allow some custom fields to be only viewed by some users and to be editable by some other users. Users in both groups are not configured as system administrators.

An example use case to help illustrate the request:

  • Bruce (with Planner Access) is the project owner of a project that has a custom field "Budget Requested" where he puts a financial value of the budget he is asking for.
  • Victoria (with Planner Access) is the financial controller and should have access to another custom field in the same form "Budget Approved" where she puts a financial value of the budget approved.


Bruce should be able to view the field "Budget Approved" but not be able to edit it. Neither Bruce or Victoria are System Admins.


How would you approach this use case. Thanks in advance for taking the time to advise on this, truly appreciated.

1 Reply


Level 10

Hi Ahmed,


What a juicy question: thanks for raising it!

Our Overlay Custom Data (OCD) solution
 restricted Custom Data so that users in different Groups see and/or edit only the Parameters they need. Although it has since been retired, you might find the concept interesting, as it validates your requirements: back in the day, worked very well, and even allowed Parameter Sections to be collapsed and expanded, years before Workfront (then AtTask) introduced that same concept, albeit only by custom form.


Nostalgia aside….


One approach to address this challenge would be to leverage my Targeted Auditing technique to:


- capture the Name and ID of the PM (Bruce) in two Targeted Auditing calculated parameters (Current PM and Current PM ID, respectively) the first time it is entered, effectively making it read only until they change


- records the Budget Requested in an "exposed" currency custom parameter that anyone can enter (and could be optionally Target Audited to detect inadvertent or intentional tampering)


- captures the Budget Requested PM as a "protected" calculated parameter that Target Audits the Budget Requested parameter using a formula that only updates such values entered by the Current PM (by comparing the Current PM ID against the $$USER.ID), thereby only changing when that PM makes updates (or if you prefer, only the first time


- similarly, captures the Name and ID of the Controller (Victoria) in two Targeted Auditing calculated parameters (Current Financial Controller and Current Financial Controller ID), noting that the source of the formulas could be modeled off the native Project Sponsor or a fit for purpose (protected, using custom form section group security) custom parameter dropdown with the parameter options label storing (and showing) such persons name and the ID storing (and saving) their ID


- similarly, captures the “exposed” Budget Approved currency custom parameter and “protected” Budget Approved Financial Controller calculated custom parameter that only updates on edits by the Current Financial Controller


- provides, in all of the above calculated parameter formula, the means for a SysAdmin (only, via custom section Group Access) to toggle a reset of all such fields (eg via a special checkbox) in case the PM or Financial Controller need to change or start over.

I have a plane to catch, so gotta jet (literally), but hope that gives you some ideas.


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