How to Create a Submission Category

Matthew Bradley -

Within FluidReview, it is possible to create and update categories for individual submissions, as well as submission groups.  Categories can be very helpful for site organization, access restriction, and also unique edge cases.

In order to access the category page, administrators will first want to access the Manage your Site tab, followed by clicking on any Submission group.  Each site's Categories page is available through the upper right corner of the Manage Submissions page, this acts as a one-stop hub to manage categories across all Submission groups within your site.

Adding a Category

Within the Categories page the 'Add' button is the first option under the Categories page header.  By clicking "Add", administrators will see a popup with a large text field and beneath that text field (provided your site has multiple submission groups) a dropdown containing each submission group on your site.  If the site only contains one submission group, this dropdown will not be present.

Type a category name into the text field for each category you wish to enter, taking care to hit your Enter/Return key between each entry so that they all have their own line.  Once your list is complete and your correct submission group (if applicable) has been selected, click 'Save' to update the list.  These categories are now ready to be used!

TIP! The 'Add' portion of this page will only let you create categories for one group at any one time, because of the dropdown selector.  Try to add your categories via the Add pop-up on a per-submission basis to make sure categories do not accidentally get set up under the wrong group!  The group can not be changed after a category is created.

Editing a Category

Once your site has categories listed, administrators will be able to select individual categories via the checkbox column.  While a category is checked, the 'Edit Selected' button can be used.

Currently the only portion of a category that can be edited is its name, if there is an issue with the submission group a category was created under, it will need to be deleted and re-created.

TIP! Because categories are not submitted data, they can be updated at any time without direct negative effects to submissions in that category.  For example if an organization changes its name, the category containing the organization's name can be updated in order to automatically update it throughout the whole site - submissions do not need to be reassigned to the category, and triggers including the category will also update with the new label.

Deleting a Category

If you find a category is no longer necessary, or was created under the incorrect submission group, administrators may wish to delete the category.  In order to delete the category it must first be selected via the checkbox column.  Only selected categories will be deleted when clicking the 'Delete Selected' button.

When clicking the Delete Selected option, the page will refresh with a notice asking administrators to confirm their decision.  By confirming or declining this, administrators will be brought back to the overall category list.

TIP! Because it is possible to delete more than one category, it is important to double check your list of categories when deleting them.  FluidReview can not restore deleted categories, so we do recommend being cautious in case a current and required category ends up selected alongside your unused or incorrect categories.

Use Cases

Earlier I mentioned a few use cases for categories.  In order to provide some clearer ideas, here is an expansion of those:

Submission Organization

Application processes which run over multiple years typically make use of categories as a sure-fire way to pull annual information.  this is especially important for sites which only make use of minimal submission groups.

For example, using a trigger to auto-apply the category '2016 Applicants' to individuals applying to current year processes will help out greatly in the year 2018 and onward, when you have both 2016 and 2017 applicants in the system, and are currently accepting applicants for 2018.  Categories can be used as a filtering criteria, which makes pulling annual reports or reflecting on earlier processes much easier in the long run.

Access Restrictions

We occasionally see sites that have one main application process, but also include conditional extra materials.  This might include applicants from out of country uploading proof of visa ownership in order to host them over a long duration, or hiding extra tasks from an individual who indicates they prefer to pay by check rather than via an online payment.

Each task within a site's workflow can be restriction to a category.  As long as one of the indicated categories has been applied to the submission, the task will become available.  For clarity we always recommend creating very straightforward and unique category names.  in the above two examples, we might suggest something like "work visa required" or "paying via check".  there are no restrictions on category names, but they are completely internal, so things like HTML code are not supported here.

Edge Cases

Very rarely, our technical assistance team has been asked about 'exceptions'.  As an example case, the deadline for a task has passed as of midnight the previous day, but an applicant has proof they encountered a technical issue that prevented them from submitting online.  In these cases, you can create a temporary category association.  By applying a category restriction to the task, and also to the individual's submission, you can remove the task deadline in order to allow this one individual to complete the task before setting everything back as it was.

For Award application categories, please click here.

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