5 Replies Latest reply on Aug 22, 2011 1:20 PM by philmodjunk

    Need ideas on surveying vendors online

    etanadjaja

      Title

      Need ideas on surveying vendors online

      Post

      Hi all,

      Currently we've been surveying vendors using an excel spreadsheet that we emailed out to each vendor to enter information about their products and supplier sources. Then we upload these returned spreadsheets into our filemaker file after cleaning up the inconsistencies in the data entry.

      This is obviously very tedious, labor intensive, and very time consuming. We also have to do this periodically to get update on anything that changes.

      Is there a way to create a survey online so each vendor can enter the information online with their own account name? Also allowing them to see what they entered in the past and update it with new data and also add new data for new products?

      Online survey is a new teritory for me with Filemaker, so I'd like to hear what are my options.

      Thank a lot!!!

        • 1. Re: Need ideas on surveying vendors online
          philmodjunk

          I'd use Instant Web Publishing to publish the survey to the web. You can send out emails with a link to the site to your vendors whenever you want to ask them to take the survey.

          IWP is not as simple as it first looks. Read the documentation provided in the Documents section of Help on this topic and you may want to contract with a hosting provider that has the ability to host your FileMaker DB to the web.

          • 2. Re: Need ideas on surveying vendors online
            etanadjaja

            Thanks Phil.

            Is it possible to not host the database on the web? We just want to get the data from the vendors back and do quality control in one computer in the office.

            Thanks.

            • 3. Re: Need ideas on surveying vendors online
              philmodjunk

              It may also be possible to automate importing data from the vendors into Filemaker. This will not be as convenient as publishing your survey to the web as I don't know of a way to automate downloading the excel files that would be sent back as attachments, but once you've dumped all the excel files into a folder, it's possible to import all of these excel files into a filemaker database. (You'd need a plug in to list the contents of the folder so that you can import all the excel files from a single run of the script.)

              • 4. Re: Need ideas on surveying vendors online
                etanadjaja

                Thanks Phil.

                I'm trying to figure out a way where vendors can just enter data to the site without us having to send excel sheet to each vendor and then get those data directly incorporated to the current database.

                • 5. Re: Need ideas on surveying vendors online
                  philmodjunk

                  Which is why I sugested publishing your survey database to the web. Your vendors would then enter the data directly into a database you set up for this purpose.

                  There are third party products and services that you might investigate for this survey. Many of them should be able to set up your survey, collect the results and then send you a single file for import into your FileMaker database.