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Gwen Chen
 |  May 23, 2018

Inspection App Form Gif

Inspections are part of the bread and butter of any field service worker. However, a lot of field workers are still forced to use archaic means to document and record their data. Many companies are looking to mobile apps to not only streamline the process, but make data more readily available throughout companies.

Today, we’ll take a look at one of the most popular uses for AppSheet. Businesses of all types live and die by the soundness of their inspection processes. It comes as no surprise then that many businesses use our no-code platform to design powerful, flexible, and agile apps for their inspection processes.

It’s time to move on from tracking your inspections on a spreadsheet orgasp!with pen and paper. This post looks at how you can use AppSheet to create an inspections app from data stored in Google Sheets that will work on mobile, tablet, and your computer. 

Here are the basics of the inspection app we’ll build today: it automates data capture (machine ID, images, and signature etc), pre-fills form fields, and sends notifications through email and Slack. The app is NFC-enabled and includes a bar code scanner, so inspectors won’t have to manually enter machine IDs. 

You can check out a pre-built inspection app by clicking on the button below.

Get the Machine Inspection App

Keep reading to learn the major steps to building the app so that you can customize it for your own unique processes (we've also included a link to our video series for you to follow along!) Finally, take a moment to watch the recordings of a webinar for an even deeper-dive into the creation of this app.

Step 1: Check columns and form settings

  • Launch AppSheet from the Google Sheet add-on: AppSheet will read the column names and pre-set data to the correct types, i.e., Text, Image, Date, Signature etc.
  • Clean up the data and create views: We created an Audit View where auditors can enter responses to all questions about the machines, and a Repair View for the maintenance/technician team to fill out.
  • Adds, updates, deletes: Configure data access so that only certain people can delete data.

Step 2: Ensure fast data capture

  • Auto-capture: Audit ID, Auditor Email, and Audit Date are set to auto-capture.
  • Hidden fields and views: Make sure that certain fields or views are hidden if you don't want auditors to edit them. By default, Repair Description field and Repair View are hidden. They are only visible when a machine fails an audit.
  • Drop-down list and auto-fill: Instead of manually typing the Machine ID, inspectors can select an ID from a drop-down list or scan the bar code or NFC tag. Once the Machine ID is entered, Machine Type will be auto-filled. Machine Issue field also has a drop-down list. Auditors can select multiple issues that need to be fixed or add new issues.
  • Divide a long form into 2 sections (Audit and Repair), create slices and views accordinglyIt is much easier to use tabs to navigate a long form.
  • Only show active machines: Those are the ones that need regular inspections.
  • Data filtering: auditors will only see relevant data in repair view.

Step 3: Enable notifications

Automatically send an email after a new audit is complete. Push Slack notifications when a machine doesn't pass an audit. In your email, you can include everything or just a summary of an audit.

Inspection App Slack Gif

Get the Machine Inspection App

For more details, check out these webinars (click on Show More to find time stamps on a certain topic that interests you):


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Gwen Chen

Gwen is a marketer with AppSheet. Prior to AppSheet, she was a digital marketer, a journalist and editor, a translator, and a college teacher. She has a master with Duke University in Environmental Science and an MBA with University of North Carolina Chapel Hill.

[Features, Tips & Webinars, Field Apps, Inspections]