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Is there a way to organize interdependent projects?

I run a research lab, and there are two sensible ways to think about our projects. 1) each research subject needs to go through a sequence of steps, and 2) each experiment needs several research subjects to go through it (among other things). So, for example, I might want to know "what's the status with Experiment A?" and see that we're waiting for subject 1 to complete it. Or maybe I want to know what subject 2 is working on. Ideally, it would be nice to move a card in one board and have it update "everywhere" (like, on a board for Subject 1 I could move a card for 'experiment A' from "doing" to "done", and that would also move a 'subject 1' card from "doing" to "done" on the board for 'experiment A'). Does Trello support this sort of thing? How would I implement that? Is there some other way to think about this that's not even occurring to me? I'm trying to get a grip on our project management and I've never used anything like Trello before, so this is all really puzzling to me right now...

2 answers

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Brittany Joiner Community Leader Oct 11, 2021

@Adam Snyder welcome to the fun world of project management tools! I think the beautiful thing about Trello is its a bunch of lego blocks so you can build just about whatever you want with it. The downside is that means sometimes means its a little confusing to know just what exactly to do 😂

As far as what you're asking about with updating one board and it reflecting on another, we call that "mirroring" and Trello has mentioned that they'll have some in-app functionality with this at some point, but for now, you'll need to use something like the Unito Power-Up (add on that you can find in the Power-Ups section), or build something out with Zapier that says if something happens in one board, update x in another board. I recommend going with Unito, it's going to cost but it's out of the box exactly what you're looking for there in terms of mirroring.

As far as set up, I prefer to personally keep as much in one board as I can. So for example, I might think of each research subject as a label, and each cards as an experiment. So in the situation where you want to see how experiment A is progressing, you could just apply a filter to label to only show A on your board, and then you could see cards for all the related experiments and which list/stage they are in.

Like this: 


And then you can add checklists inside each subject , and you can also make your list names a little more descriptive to give more context to which parts of the stage they're in. For example maybe it's hypothesis --> runnings tests --> reviewing results , etc. 

Thanks. I'll try the labels idea for now and see how that works

@Adam Snyder 

Definitely a good candidate to have experiment linked to all the subjects and to be able to checked off each subject at the experiment level. Also to allow for subjects to be added and also added to the checklist of the experiment card. When the checked list is completed it allows for the entire experiment list to be archived as a single list. 
In this case, you use labels at the experiment card to indicate the status. 
A law firm client, used the above and used Dashcards to provide overview of the statuses including blockers, issues arising out of individual subject cards. 

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