Hi All, 

I am unsure where I might use TEXTLIST function. 

There has never been a need for me to use this but I would like to understand where, when and how this might be useful.

Your insights are much appreciated!!

Best Answer


  • Thanks @rob_marshall for pointing me in the right direction. 


    I had to ask as I couldnt see a clear use case for the TEXTLIST and I can see that we are strongly advised to NOT use it which was my instinct all along. 


    The case for being able to reverse the LOOKUP while it appears useful is achievable using a more effective and less performance sapping technique.

  • I have used it to rollup text depending on the hierarchy level selected by a user. In the example below, forecasts are entered at department level with commentary (level 3). 



    Depending on the level users select, I use text list to summarize commentary entered


    You can get more fancy providing commentary overrides along each level so when a user drills up and down the hierarchy they are shown the appropriate detail/summary of information


    @rob_marshall I understand you advise not to use textlist but if you can show me how to achieve the result above via another mechanism. As part of the transformation above I do you use first non blank as well




  • @TristanS 


    Commentary is a different story and in your case, you would most likely need to use Textlist() if the Commentary was truly free text.  With that said, if you can get away from using Text as well as TextList, then your model will perform better.  I understand you just mocked something up, but if the "text" can be made into a list, like if they were stock answers or status's instead of using Text, then you can most likely model it.



  • @rob_marshall

    Is TEXTLIST() to be strictly avoided at all times?

    I was looking at a requirement wherein the multiple user IDs simply needed to be concatenated from the native Users list (to be used in the MAILTO() function to populate recipients). TEXTLIST() seemed like a handy option for this.


  • @samkovoor

    In that situation, you are probably correct in using TextList(). Should it be strictly avoided at all costs? No, but you should attempt to solve the logic without using Textlist()...In your case, it is probably warranted.