Data collection involves gathering information to be used as a basis for reasoning, discussion, or calculation. “Field data” refers to data collected outside the traditional laboratory or office setting. This collection method is done in person, at a specifically chosen location.
Field data collection can be carried out in the form of interviews, surveys, questionnaires, observations, ethnographies, oral histories; case studies, or reviewing documents and records. Although effective and efficient, this data collection method also comes with challenges which exist because collecting information is only half of the data life cycle/process. Exporting and formatting the data into a suitable format for analysis often creates a whole new set of challenges. Depending on the collection method being used, the researcher may experience:
- Lost, outdated or incomplete data/information
- Entry and transcription errors (from illegible handwriting etc) leading to data inaccuracies
- Inaccurate/lack of location data
- Network glitches
In some cases, it can be days, weeks, or months before field data makes it into the hands of its intended recipient, rendering it all but useless. This can be problematic because data is needed to communicate, and present critical situational intelligence at short notice, and this requires using secure and familiar tools that allow flexible and rapid collection.
Therefore, to avoid the aforementioned challenges, data needs to be collected using a tool that has benefits such as:
- A user-friendly interface
- Data security and encryption, thus promoting privacy
- The ability to collect data with or without internet connection
- Instant analysis and feedback of collected data
- Integration and comparison of previously gotten data
- Exportation of collected data into DHIS2 for analysis.
These features describe the data collection and analysis tool Datakojo, developed by eHealth4everyone. It is a flexible yet sophisticated mobile data collection platform used for surveys, research, and supervision. It also facilitates planning, monitoring and evaluations of programs and projects. Datakojo is a reliable tool for field data collection, analysis and sharing. Information on this tool is available on our website, Navigate through the website for more information, and reach out for any concerns or questions you might have.