In today’s world, if you want to save any relational data quickly and easily on the web, what is the first thing that comes to your mind?
For me it is Google sheet.
Any operations or planning data that I write I start with Google sheet. If I have to share any records, it’s also in the form of sheets.
It was the same for most of the NGOs that we work with in Glific. Google sheet is familiar, easy to share and easy to update.
After discussion with some of the NGO these were the main areas where sheets can be used in Glific
- Scheduling content delivery over a prolonged duration when NGOs have weeks or months worth of content ready,
- The messages can be a session, interactive or template message in the sheet
- To pull content for a standard sequence of messages
- To plan quizzes
We worked with a few NGOs and did this on a consulting basis as we needed to write code to fetch data from a sheet in Glific and store it in a format that can be easily used.
More Power to users
Developer’s main motto as shared by Lobo should be to automate what can be automated. Give the power to users and think of making yourself obsolete.
So we decided to give back the power to the users and introduced a sheet integration feature in Glific. Now NGOs don’t need to come to us to integrate Glific with their sheets; they can do so on their own.
With this you can pull all the data you want from a google sheet and send that as a message from Glific.
NGO staff members just need to update the sheet and voila new messages are shared with your beneficiaries from Glific
How it works
Now I would like to explain how this whole feature would actually work.
Suppose you want to send a different message on each date and you maintain that record in a sheet like this.
Introducing sheet integration: With this you can specify the URL of a public sheet and that data gets saved in Glific to be used further in a flow.
Ohh I have loaded the sheet in Glific but how do I use that?
We have introduced a new node Link google sheet in flows that does your work
Here you can specify the sheet that you want to add and select a row from the sheet.
Now what is this row selection?
Suppose I want to get data for the date 1/10/2022 from the sheet. This helps me picking up the particular row from the sheet with the key column
With this we can access the columns like Message English for this particular row and in this way send a message to the beneficiary.
This is still in early phases of development and will need feedback from our users to make this feature as simple and easy to use as possible.
We have thought a lot more for the next phase of the integration and will share that in another blog.