Lookups vs OptionSets

Nick Chin, 06 May 2019

Why use a Lookup over an OptionSet?

OptionSets are a simple way to deal with lists and will meet most of your requirements, however in some situation you might want to use lookups.

Why would I choose to use Lookups instead of OptionSets?

•    Large amount of Options:
     OptionSets don’t deal well with a large number of options, it requires a lot of scrolling.

     •    Search: Looks ups let you search making it easy to find an option

     •    Filter Data: Views allow users to easily filter the options down

•    Complex Data:
     With more Complex data you might want to view more details.
     For example: with numbers I could display the language and its numeral.
     This can be displayed in a way to help you select.

•    Relationships:
     Lookups allow you to easily view related records.
     For instance, I can view all Numbers for the French language:
     Or all contacts who have “Uno” as their favourite number:
•    New Options:
     It is more user-friendly using lookups when adding new options. For an OptionSet a user with Customization permissions needs to go into a solution to add new options and publish.
     With lookups a user with create permission simply would browse to the record they want to add more options (e.g. “Numbers”) and then click “New”.


Hopefully you have taken something away from this blog and look to use more lookups in the future!