Yes, this can be done with filemaker. There are several books on Amazon that will teach you about filemaker. Filemaker also has very good training material avaliable here online. Filemaker comes with starter solutions that you can review and learn from. You might also want to look for a developer to design this app for you. Compare price of filemaker, cost of training material, and time in learning filemaker to the price of having someone else design the app for you. This should be a simple app to design.
You can also download the 30 day free trial of Filemaker PRo and get the FileMaker Go app for free--so you can try things out before you buy.
Feel free to ask specific questions here as you try this out and encounter an issue.
This looks pretty simple, but it's something you are going to have to make. There is nothing in the starter solutions you could use for this.
What would the document look like filled in?
I see about 5 checkboxes plus the overall score (passed or failed)
Then the comment section and the 7 fields on the bottom.
Do you also need to store the info of the candidates?
Like their contact information so you have an archive of past candidates and their test results?
What about the evaluator? Are there multiple evaluators? Do you need to store their information?
Whose ID number is the ID number? Candidate or evaluator?
And what's with the "Print" and "Sign" fields?
If you want I could make you a little example for this. It seems like a really small project.
Thank you for your response. I have already downladed the free trial which is what precipitated my questions as it does appear I will have to Build this from scratch. Answers to your questions are below:
What would the document look like filled in?>> Pretty basic as you see in the screenshot. Just Check marks for a fail, notes of failure if present and signatures of parties
Do you also need to store the info of the candidates? >> Not necisarry although nice. We have new ones come in all the time but retakes are common and having them in the system already would be a bonus.
Like their contact information so you have an archive of past candidates and their test results? This will need to be permanently and securely archived and submitted. Past results would be great to pull up.
What about the evaluator? Are there multiple evaluators? Do you need to store their information?>> Again, not needed but would be nice.
Whose ID number is the ID number? Candidate or evaluator? >>>Every candidate has an ID number for further identification. That is to be entered in as well.
And what's with the "Print" and "Sign" fields?>>> This is where both evaluator and Candidate must print their name legibly and sign after the test is complete to authenticate the test results. This would be a requirement for the program to work.
I truly just dont know where to start on this. I feel quite adept at software use but this is completely new. Do you work for Filemaker? I do not want to impose by having you build a sample but it would be helpful. Additionally, there are upwards of 200 sheets for every aspect of the job that requires evaluation. Would there be a quick method to replicate them?
there are upwards of 200 sheets for every aspect of the job that requires evaluation.
Would there be a quick method to replicate them?
What do you want to do with these 200 sheets? Are these 200 sheets that all need to be filled in? Or do they only need to be printed?
I truly just dont know where to start on this. I feel quite adept at software use but this is completely new.
Filemaker can have a pretty steep learning curve depending on how good you are with computers and at logical thinking :)
All you need is someone who explains you the basics and shows you the basic building blocks. After that you can continue on your own.
Do you work for Filemaker? I do not want to impose by having you build a sample but it would be helpful.
I do not work for Filemaker, I'm just a guy who is really enthousiastic about filemaker and when I have some free time and I read here about an interesting project I'm always willing to help a hand.
Now it would be pretty useless if I would just make you a file and send you on your way. I would explain here how to do it and post explanation, demo files and screenshots so you can follow what I do and learn about filemaker while making your file.
Like I did here:
Let me know a little more about those 200 sheets and we can get started.
Yeah I was afraid of that. There is a separate eval sheet for every single skill that is needed in the firefighting profession. Probable 10 for ladder usage, 8 for seaching a building, 8 for hose techniques and fire management etc. They are all the exact same format, just with different questions and criteria for each.
If you would be willing to help that would be great! I am sure I can figure it out if I get a feel for the building blocks to make he above screen shot.
Let me know what else you need.
Maybe, if we are lucky, we can make just one single document and just change the content of that document depending on what "category" or "skill" we have.
Your screenshot shows "Clean, inspect and maintain Personal Protective Equipment".
And that has 5 questions.
You also talk about ladder usage (10 questions) and hose techniques (8 questions) etc.
If we look at these as "skills" and "questions" and we just make a list of the "skils in one table, and a list of the questions in another table then we can just link the questions to a certain skill and we only need one ducoment.
Then we can make an evaluation layout that shows all skills in a list and let's you select a skill in order to evaluate it's questions.
I don't know if this makes sense. But if this would be possible this would save you loads of work.
Also, the layout of the sheet, is that something that you determine yourself? Can that be slightly changed?
On the top it says "Objectives" is that something that changes? depending on the skill or is that the same everywhere?
Each Separate evaluation has a different objective identifier. So yes, this will change with each Evaluation.
Think of the "Questions" more like tasks that need to be completed. So raising an 18 foot ladder to a building woud require, say 9 individual steps to be completed in order to pass the intire evaluation. Thus, every task for every eval will be different. There would be no need to categorize every question because they are different for each task.
I would like to learn how to do that however as there are bound to be some repeats. Here is a link to the entire list of Eval sheets for your reference: http://www.cmcb.net/JobSheets/FireFighter/FireFighterI.pdf
So basically we need to enter:
- Objective identifier: (e.g; NFPA 1001 5.1.2 (2008 Edition)
- Primary tasks (e.g. Hose Roll)
And then we add a certain amount of questions to this 'Objective' or 'Task'
The naming is a little difficult. Let's use the word "Skill" for Primary Task and "Task" for the questions.
I see in your PDF that there are sometimes sub titles, sometimes they are bold, sometimes not. So wee need two check boxes or a radio button set to be able to check if there is a "subtitle" or a "bold subtitle".
But that way we can get away with making one document that changes dinamycally depending on the amount of questions.
And that way the system becomes super flexible. You can always add or modify tasks or skills.
I think this is looking pretty do-able.
There would be no need to categorize every question because they are different for each task.
What I meant to say was is that every Task does belong to a certain "Skill".
Think if it as parent and child records. Every Child "Task" has a parent "Skill"
P.S. I'm still assuming in my head that you will be printing this, but is this the case?
Will you ever print this or will this be transformed into a completely digital evaluation?
That Looks great!!
Ideally, there should be no reason to print these off as long as it is a secure PDF with signatures. It will be submitted to the Board administrators who will keep the record. Printing capabilities may be needed but printing is overrated. Who needs those things any more.
Well, for the signatures I just found this:
So that shouldn't be a problem.
And for the pdf, well generating a PDF is essentially the same as printing. You need to create a printable document.
But in the way we are going to do this this should be no problem at all.
So right now I have these "features" for your file: (think of this as a menu with multiple buttons)
- Evaluators and their info
- Candidates and their info
- Skills (and their tasks) A list of all the skills and their related tasks with the ability to create subtitles
- Evaluations: The actual place where you list your evaluations. Maybe the easiest method will be that you create a new candidate or go to an existing one and have a button "Evaluate" to create a new evaluation and also a list of past evaluations for if you want to see a previous evaluation.
The way these evaluations will work is that when you create a new Evaluation the list of skills that exists at that moment will be imported into that persons evaluation and then you can start checking boxes and writing evaluations.
I'm assuming that you start an evaluation but that it takes quite some time to go over all of the skills. I assume it happens over a longer period of time.
Maybe using different Evaluators as well.
Yes, there is typically a time limit for each of these evaluations. Donning equipment for time for example requires a max time of 1 minute and 30 seconds. Others are quite a bit longer.
I think I understand what you mean by the auto population option. I think that will work as long as the data is the same for each skill. Typically, a class is prescribed about 5-8 skills to perform throguhout an afternoon to test them on mastery of firefighting skills. there are differen evaluators for each skill that is tested upon. So yes, we will need to have the flexibility to assign evaluators as they come.
OK, I think I have this one pretty much figured out.
It's getting pretty late here where I am and I have a pretty full day tomorrow. I'm guessing I will start on this on sunday.
So I'll see you then :)