Collect form finalization improvements

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Thank you for your feedback –– we had over 60 people respond to the survey!

Our goal with this research was to understand the challenges with finalizing forms and what could be improved in the user experience based on your feedback.

:eyes: What did we learn?

  • Data collectors often complete the survey in more than one visit.
  • Supervisors are concerned about data collectors making errors, and the last step in finalizing the form often causes confusion.
  • There is a desire for more feedback about: when people are offline, when their forms have been successfully sent, and reminders to submit their forms.
  • People would like a way to return forms to the user to be reworked.
  • Lots of positive feedback about the entity-centric work that’s in progress.

Respondents also appreciated the tips we provided in the survey:

  • Did you know that you can configure Collect to always mark forms as finalized and to hide the checkbox for finalization? You can read more in the documentation.
  • Did you know that you can configure the name of filled forms to use data from inside the form? This is the name that is shown in form lists like in "Edit Saved Form". You can read more in the documentation.
  • Did you know that you can track changes? You can read more in the documentation.

Highlights from user feedback

  • “Often time researchers miss the checkbox button and just click finalized button.”
  • “We encourage cross checking records and editing if need be.”
  • “Some data collectors review the collected data and make changes, as a data manager I do not encourage this practice.”
  • “In most cases, enumerators are much in a hurry during the day to reach their targets. Editing the forms gives them time to review and check for any errors.”
  • “I did not know about this feature until recently, there is also need to proof read and correct some incomplete collected data.”
  • “Add a message at the end of the finalize form to let the user know that the form will not be automatically submitted and that he needs to do it manually. Sometimes some people forget.”

:bulb: What will we change based on feedback?

  • Add a summary screen showing what’s completed and if there is any missing information to be reviewed before sending to reduce errors.
  • Make auto-send the default, still giving people the flexibility to change this if it’s critical for their workflow.
  • Remove ability to manually write instance name. Analytics show it’s uncommon. It can be replicated by adding a text field and using its value directly as the instanceName in form design.
  • Introduce a finalization dialogue to make it clear that the data collector will not be able to edit beyond this point to avoid people submitting before they are ready.
  • Provide better feedback prompts indicating when users are offline, when forms have been sent or when forms are in the queue to be sent.
  • Give users the ability to fill out another instance of the same form when they are done or go back to the main menu to create a smoother workflow.

:date: What to expect next

  • We are going to start on this work in the second Collect release of the year.
  • You can expect the beta in the winter and see something in the spring.

Keen to give feedback but didn’t get a chance this round? Not to worry, we will be doing more research in the coming months.