How To Make Safe Changes To a Production Survey
Changing and editing a production survey could be risky if you are not doing it right.
This post is here to instruct you how to make safe changes in a production survey, without affecting\losing any of the previous collected data.
How To: Making safe changes in production surveys:
Here are our general recommendations when changing a survey that is in production mode:
- Adding new questions to the survey: safe, older interviews won’t have the data for this question but newer ones will.
- Adding answers/topics to existing questions: safe. Use the “Add” button or “MultiAdd” to add new answers. Do not remove the entire old list and put in an entire new list, this is unsafe, read the part about removing answers.
You can either add in the single line text box, or in the multi-add text box.
- Changing question texts: Changing the text of a questions body is safe.
- Changing answer texts/topic texts: Safe, as long as you really change the texts (Press F2 when selecting the text) and not “remove and then re-add” the answer/topic – see below for explanation how to safely remove answers/topics.
As you can see, after selecting an Answer and clicking F2, it would be available for text editing.
- Removing questions: our recommendation is NOT to remove them but rather put “false” in the entrance rule or mark the question as “Hidden from surveyor = true” in the advanced tab of the question. If you do remove the question the data collected for that question of older interviews will disappear which is a shame so please follow our recommendation.
- Removing answers/topics: our recommendation is NOT to remove them but rather hide these answers/topics by using the SetAnswerVisible() or SetTopicVisible() functions in the start script. If you do remove them, older interviews which have data for this topic/answer will now have no data. Our recommendation will also make sure that the variable names and codings stay intact.
Regarding all changes, please notice that you would need to ask your surveyors to sync to the newest version of the survey so they wouldn’t conduct results still using an older version of the survey.
In order to verify the version of the survey, you can find it in the Survey Info Tab:
And on the device, you would see it on the survey selection screen:
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