Make it harder to discard surveys

04-05-2021 11:03 PM
Status: Under Consideration
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New Contributor II

Users can abandon a survey and discard the data collected.  However, when data is primarily collected through repeats (particularly when devices are offline for extended time) some users have accidentally discarded a significant amount of data they actually wanted. They report it is too easy to mistakenly choose discard when they just want to close or after an app crash. My suggestion is to make the 'discard' procedure more interactive to ensure users really want to permanently erase the data eg: clear warnings and second chances. Ideally a simple parameter would set how many hoops a user must jump through before the data goes forever.

Status changed to: Needs Clarification


Can you be more specific about the procedure you envision?  As it stands, there is a 'second warning' when a user chooses to abandon a survey - after pressing the 'X', a pop-up appears asking the user to confirm that the wish to 'Close and lose changes', with the option to return to the survey or save the data into the drafts folder.


Hi,  The procedure I have in mind is similar to the delete used in ArcGIS online where you have to hold the delete option button down while a red status bar slowly moves across the screen.  This ensures that the deleting (or abandoning) really is the option the user wanted to carry out. I imagine that this 'extra safe' abandon would be a setting as it wouldn't suit everyone.

At present, after a user error or a phone app problems it is relatively easy to arrive at the second warning  'Close and lose changes' without planning to be there.   The second warning then becomes more of a first warning. In bright sunlight or other difficult field conditions users report it is easy to 'click away' this warning without realising they are clicking away all their survey data.  While they acknowledge this is a user error they are grumpy it is too easy to do, some users have done it several times.

Status changed to: Under Consideration

@JamesTedrick I wonder if you have a status update on this? Our users conduct a vegetation survey that takes hours, with lots of walking. Survey123 crashes or restarts almost every time their devices sleep. Thus, they might see the recovery screen with the Discard/Continue many times per day. Inevitably, someone will accidentally click discard and lose hours of work. We urgently need a confirmation that they really want to delete the survey. 

Also, is there a setting for Survey123 that we can enable to prevent the device from sleeping? 


@JamesTedrick Any word on a status update for this? We are having the same issue with Survey123 crashing when devices go to sleep and just lost a day's work when a field technician accidently hit Discard instead of continue. It would be great to ask a second time before discarding the data.