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Strategy for user sign off activity tracking

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  • Strategy for user sign off activity tracking

    I would appreciate the great minds on this board to lend their opinion on the better/best build strategy to handle my scenario. I will give the scenario followed with explanation of the two possibilities that I came up with that are exemplified in the attached example database. I chose to use scripts to populate the example app with a number of records that emulates the scenerio. So to save file space, the zip file has empty tables. The app autoexec calls functions to populate the tables upon first database startup. It will take about 2 minutes to build. The password on startup is ‘password’.

    I have a table with document records for ~700 documents. The real version will be closer to 1000. The documents are a compilation from 16 separate sections within one department. The number of documents each section contributes to the whole varies.

    There are 100 employees (staff). The employees work in one or more sections in the department. Each staff must read all the documents in the ADM section and each document specific to the section(s) in which they work, and sign off on having read them. The sections in which they are assigned to work dictates the documents they are responsible to read. There is one section that no one is assigned to but the documents for that section everyone has to read (Administration-ADM). Each document is assigned to only one section.

    Each document has one section, a unique document number (doc_no) and a unique document control number (dc_number). The documents undergo revisions. The document control number is a concatenation of the three character section code, unique document number, and the revision date (YYYddmm). Each time a revision is made it is established as a “new” document and each staff responsible must read and sign off having read each revision.

    Each staff has a unique username and password and the application has a user login component. Therefore the user is registered as the session owner. The design must provide for the user to be presented with the documents for their section which they have responsibility, and have not yet read, and for them to access the document, read it, and sign off. The presentation of the records of the documents the user is responsible for which they have not signed off IS part of strategy I seek opinions on. The method of how the sign off occurs IS part of strategy I seek opinions on. The act of accessing the document is NOT a component of the help I am seeking.

    There must be the capabilities for a report which presents which documents each staff is responsible to read and has, and which they are responsible to read and have not.

    The records for the documents are in the docs table, 1 record for each document. The two methods differ in the structure of the table used to register the sign off event.

    Method 1 uses a registry table (reg_read) that accumulates one record for every document revision and every staff responsible for reading that document (fields dc_number & username). The record has a field “read_status” for registering having read (T), or pending (F). This table will accumulate many records (the multiple of # of records multiplied by # staff responsible multiplied by # revisions). The user can be presented the documents needed to be read by filtering this table by the username field and the read_status field=”F”.

    Method 1 uses a registry table (rr_memo) that accumulates one record for every document revision. It has a dc_number field and a memo field. The memo field accumulates the usernames of those that have signed off having read the document. This table accumulates one record for every document revision only. The user can be presented the documents needed to be read by filtering this table by the dc_number wich contains the section code they are responsible for anf the memo field NOT containing their username.

    OK, that’s it. This explanation is in the example as a HELP buton on the main menu. Any recommendations are welcome. The password for Mr. Obama is ‘password’. Thanks.
    Mike W
    "I rebel in at least small things to express to the world that I have not completely surrendered"

  • #2
    Re: Strategy for user sign off activity tracking

    No one paying attention to you I see Mike! :)

    I did not check out your sample yet, but reading the post a couple of times I tend to favor the second Method 1 described where a list of names in a memo field indicate whether someone read the document or not....just seems simpler and many less records will accumulate.

    With the memo's history though I always tend to shy away from them, but in this case one could be very useful....and considering only xbasic will be writing to them at the table level I assume, I wouldn't expect problems.

    I guess displaying the data is not any more difficult whether using a set based browse or an embedded xdialog list box and filtering either by the separate records or a parsed memo field....all dependent on how you would want it to look and your familiarity with doing one or the other...
    It is only when we forget all our learning that we begin to know.
    It's not what you look at that matters, it's what you see.
    Henry David Thoreau


    • #3
      Re: Strategy for user sign off activity tracking

      thanks for your thoughts Mike. I'm still in a quandry over this, trying to segregate all the ramifications, before I commit.
      Mike W
      "I rebel in at least small things to express to the world that I have not completely surrendered"