OutNav supports an iterative analysis process – allowing you to start with tentative analysis, which you then improve and refine over time. This means you can start telling a story quickly, frequently sharing your progress so far, for ongoing assessment and improvement.
We take the view that reporting should also be part of the iterative process of learning and improvement, not simply an activity tacked on at the end. For background on working in this way, please see our post Report in an outcome-focused way.
This article considers the features in OutNav that support this approach to reporting. It provides guidance on:
- Generating live, interactive reports within OutNav
- Customising and editing your report
- Making the most of the interactive report features when presenting reports to others
- Sharing live reports with others
- Saving or downloading static snapshots
Generating a Report
To generate a report in OutNav click on the 'Reporting' tab in the Project Overview. From the dropdown tab click on the 'Go to Reporting' link:
This will take you to the first step in the process, 'Generate a report'.
Choose whether you want to report on a specific pathway or include all pathways and click 'NEXT'.
You can then select your report type from three options:
Findings report: show me the findings
This report will present the project background, outcome map, selected pathways and findings
Full report: show me everything
This will present the project background, outcome map, pathways, summary findings, detailed findings, sources and success criteria, risks and assumptions, evidence standards and comments
Custom report: let me choose
This report allows you to choose from all content as shown below:
If you wish, you can enter a custom name for the report in the 'Report Name' text box. Custom names can only contain letters, numbers, spaces, hyphens and underscores.
Click 'NEXT' and your report will be generated online.
Customising and Editing Your Report
You can customise the design of the front page of your report, choosing from a selection of page layouts and also from a colour palette. The design you choose will be saved and will appear as the default option when you next run a report:
Before sharing your report, you have the option to edit the content in any of the report content boxes, simply by selecting the 'edit' icon to the right of the content area. This can be handy if you spot any typos or wish to make a more substantial change before sharing your report.
When you select 'edit' the background colour of the content area you are working on will change to highlight the active edit area.
The changes are made without leaving the report and will be updated in OutNav.
Making the Most of Interactive Features When Presenting Live Reports
This section provides some hints and tips on using interactive features when presenting Live reports:
- The Content page contains hyperlinks to each section of the report, which allow you to easily navigate to key areas:
- The 'background' presents project details including about this work, aims and objectives, context for delivery and methodological approach. (Project administrators can take a look at the Project Settings for support completing / editing these sections.) You may decide not to include this information when generating a report with specific audiences in mind, or you can skip past this report section using the hyperlinks in the Content page.
- Within the outcome map, you can hover over stepping stones in order to enlarge them:
- Pathway summaries include a progress and confidence key which can be expanded for more information about the evidence standards used to rate progress:
Within the detailed findings, images can be enlarged and scrolled through by clicking on them:
- Once enlarged the image takes up the page and if there are multiple images then you can scroll through them use the arrows on either side of the image:
If you want to go back to report contents page at any point, you can click on the rightmost icon in the navigation bar at the bottom right of the generated report.
The other icons allow you to share the report, save to completed reports or download the report to Microsoft Word 2010 or above respectively, described further below.
Sharing, Saving and Downloading Reports
The last page of your generated report also includes the option to share the report, saves the report to completed reports (which can be viewed from the Report tab on the Project Overview page) or download the report to Microsoft Word.
If you opt to share the live report, the content of your Shared report is live – pulled directly from your OutNav project, so any changes you make within OutNav will be reflected in the report. There are a number of settings to ensure you can make best use of this feature in ways that suit the way you prefer to work in OutNav.
When you choose the share report option, a 'Share This Report' menu is displayed:
The report expiry date is set to 14 days by default. If you are working iteratively, this default date should give the recipients enough time to read the report (and let you correct any typos / carry out some fine tuning to the report content) without holding you back from moving on to the iteration. You can however change the expiry date to an earlier or later date (and you also have the option to change the expiry date).
Sharing a live report with your OutNav team members brings an added ‘Edit’ feature, which provides a quick link to update your analysis directly from the report.
You also have the option to send the live report to an external audience:
In the latter case the report can be shared by email, or by generating a link, and can be password protected if you need them to be.
There may also be times when want to create a static snapshot report, such as upon completion of a project phase, following annual reporting or generation of a report for a specific audience.
To take a static snap-shot, you can save your report to completed reports in OutNav or download your report as a Microsoft Word file (version 2010 or above) and print, circulate for comments, edit or add your inhouse style.
You can keep track of all your reports through the Reports tab on the Project Overview page.
Need some extra help?
Why not pop into one of our drop-in help sessions, running twice weekly on Tuesdays and Thursdays? A member of the Matter of Focus team will be on hand to answer questions and help with your evaluation in any way they can.
We also run regular community meetings where you can share with and learn from other members of the OutNav community.
Free access to all of these sessions is included with your OutNav subscription. More information and links can be found on your Organisation Home page.
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