Submit ODK Collect forms directly to OpenFn (no Aggregate)

Hi all,

This is something that I remember talking about years ago at an ODK community meeting, but sadly not getting around to implement until last week. There are lots of people who want to use ODK Collect in the field, but then send that data into different sytems—i.e., not to use ODK Aggregate as their MIS, primary database, whatever. (See threads on this forum about the JSON Publisher, for example.) We've now tweaked the /inbox/your-uuid endpoint on OpenFn so you can now submit forms (not media, yet) directly to OpenFn and control all your integrations from there.

Why is this a good thing? OpenFn is cloud hosted (except when local deployments are required at the enterprise level) and has a free tier. Our hope is that this makes ODK Collect much more accessible: If you've got a simple form, you no longer need to set up an ODK Aggregate instance to be up and running with ODK. You can use a free plan on OpenFn and have form submissions from ODK Collect flow directly, in real-time, to Google Sheets, DHIS2, Salesforce, Postgres, MySQL, etc. You could even use OpenFn to store form data then export it as a CSV—though that's definitely not what we were built for. (Remember... we're trying to reduce the amount of tedious human data processing work done in the social sector, not increase it :slight_smile:)

Note that right now we don't accept photos/videos/audio, but plan to add media support in the future. Check out the full post here and please feel free to post here or reach out to me or @aleksa-krolls with any questions or feedback.

Happy integrating,


That's really cool! I'm guessing, this would also work with the submission_url setting in XLSForm, right?


Haven't tried, but looks like it! From the docs, "This url can be used to override the default server where finalized records are submitted to." Thanks for pointing that out.