Pushing results into SharePoint from an Assessment System using Email

I’ve been looking at ways of getting results from assessments into a SharePoint list. Once you do this, you can report on them within SharePoint and look at using other lists or workflow to take actions – for instance collate results together, schedule a second test once a pre-requisite test is passed, or alert if someone fails a test too many times. There seem lots of applications in compliance and in education/training.

SOAP or REST web services are a strong candidate for robust pushing results into SharePoint, but with SharePoint allowing email enabled lists and libraries, pushing by email seems also promising.  I’ve got this working on a practice site as a proof of concept, using a Discussion List, as you can see in the screenshot below.

Screenshot showing results from email

Here is how I did it:

1. Questionmark Perception (like many other assessment systems) can send an email at end of test. You configure this to send to the email address of your choice, and I simply directed it to send to the incoming email address of the SharePoint list.

2. I configured in Perception very simply that the subject of the email would either say “Pass Compliance Test” or “Fail Compliance Test” (depending on whether the user did pass or fail) and that the body would be the name of the person taking the assessment.

3. I then mapped the subject of the email in SharePoint to a column called “Pass or Fail” in the list and the body to a column called “Participant”. The “Date of test” is then a calculated field set to the creation date for the item.

4. This seems to work reliably, at least for demonstration purposes. When you take an assessment, the email gets sent, and a few seconds later if you refresh the SharePoint list, the new result is added.

I know not all SharePoint sites are email-enabled, but for those that are, this technique could be interesting. You’d need to check on the reliability and have a back-up mechanism if email is down, and also might want to do some parsing to pass more information through.  But at the very least, this shows the possibilities!

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2 Responses to Pushing results into SharePoint from an Assessment System using Email

  1. This is because a worker who knows the job requirements will easily be able to meet the company expectations,nice blog.

  2. Ann Kelly says:

    You can also leverage 3rd party tools like http://www.cloud2050.com to push data into SharePoint by email. The good thing with this tool is that you can embed data in the email body.

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