How to set up a notification schedule?

Notification schedules are created by following these steps:

1. Name the notification. Select a name (up to 20 characters) for this notification. The name you choose will be seen by the Mobile User when the Notification is delivered. For example, if you are delivering Prompts that focus on mood, you might name the Session "Mood Check In".

2. Establish the Session Duration. How long do you want Notifications to be sent to Mobile Users who have downloaded this LifePak? There are four options from which to choose:

a. Same as Pak: this option allows you to deliver Notifications for as long as the LifePak is active. So if you have a LifePak that is scheduled to run for the month of August, then the Notifications using the "Same as Pak" designation will be delivered during the month of August (depending on the other specifications you establish, which are described below)

b. Limit by Range of Days: Notifications will be delivered only during the range of days you have specified. Start and End days are based on the time when the LifePak is downloaded. Specify the Start and End day to establish when the Notifications will be delivered. For example, if you want a set of Notifications to be delivered during the first week of LifePak use you would enter the Start Day as 1 and End day as 7.

c. Limit by Range of Dates: delivery of Notifications will begin on the start date and the last set of Notifications will be delivered on the end date.

d. Limit by Completed Responses: Notifications will be delivered based on the established schedule, until the specified number of Session Instances are completed. For example, if you specify 5 Total Completed Session Instances, then the mobile user has to respond to 5 Notifications and complete all of the Prompts within those 5 Session Instances before Notifications for that NIS cease. IMPORTANT: if you limit Notifications by completed responses, then any other NIS you create for the LifePak must also be limited by completed responses. And when you have more than one NIS limited by completed response, the order that the NISs are listed in the web application are the order in which they are presented to the Mobile User. You can drag an NIS to change the order.

3. Establish a User Response Window if you want to limit the amount of time that Mobile Users have to respond once they receive a Notification. For example, if you set a User Response Window of 15 minutes, that means that once the Notification is delivered, the Mobile User has 15 minutes to respond to the Notification. After the User Response Window has elapsed, Prompts associated with that Notification are no longer available to the Mobile User. If you set no limit on the User Response Window, then the Mobile User will be able to access Prompts for that Notification up until the next Notification is sent (i.e., multiple Notifications for the same Session will not "stack up" so only the most recent Session Instance is available to the Mobile User). Hint: when conducting experience sampling, specifying a shorter User Response Window can help you avoid a "convenience sample" of your Users' experiences.

4. Select a Fixed or Randomized schedule.

a. Fixed schedules allow you to select specific times to deliver Notifications. For example, you could specify Notifications for 9:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. daily. Once you have selected Fixed Schedule, you can select which days and times you want Notifications to be delivered.

i. What days for this schedule. Choose one of three options:

1. Everyday: prompts will be delivered every day at the fixed time(s) you specify.

2. Certain days of the week: select which days you want to deliver Notifications and they will be delivered on those days and at the specific times you have chosen. Select days by clicking (highlighting) the days you want Notifications to be sent. In some cases, it is helpful to establish different schedules for weekdays and weekends, depending on the characteristics of your Mobile Users. In the example below, weekdays have been selected

 

3. Exact dates: select the exact dates you want your Notifications to be delivered. Notifications will be delivered only on those dates and at the times you specify.

ii. Notification Time. After you have determined the days or dates for Notifications, you should specify the specific Notification time(s). Enter the exact Notification time using a 24-hour clock (i.e., if the time is after 12 p.m. noon, then add 12 hours, so 1:30 p.m. would be 13:30). If you want more than one Notification on the day(s) or date(s) you have specified, then click "+Add Notification Time" and another data field will appear where you can enter an additional Notification time.

b. Randomized schedules allow you to establish the parameters within which the system will generate and send random Notifications.

i. What days for this schedule. Choose one of three options:

1. Everyday: Prompts will be delivered every day during the window of time you specify.

2. Certain days of the week: select which days you want to deliver Notifications and they will be delivered on those days. Select days by clicking (highlighting) which days you want Notifications sent.

3. Exact dates: select the exact dates you want your Notifications to be delivered. Notifications will be delivered only on those dates you specify.

ii. Beginning and Ending Time. Establish the beginning and ending time for the randomization period. For example, if you want notifications to be delivered between 8 a.m. and 10 p.m., you would set the Beginning Time at 8:00 and the Ending Time at 22:00.

iii. Number of Notifications Within This Time Window. How many Notifications do you want your participant to receive during the window of time that you specified? If, for example, you enter 3, then the Mobile User will receive 3 randomized Notifications within the time window you specified.

iv. Minimum Time Between Notifications. If you have more than one Notification, then you must specify the minimum amount of time between Notifications. For example, if you specify 120, then the system will ensure that there are at least 120 minutes between Notifications. If you specify too many Notifications within a time window and/or too much time between notifications, then the system will force you to reduce one or both data fields. The reason for this is that if you have several Notifications and a lot of time between Notifications, it effectively reduces the system's ability to randomly distribute the Notifications within the time window you have specified.

5. Click +Add Schedule if you want to add an additional schedule to the one you just created. For example, if you created a randomized schedule that runs from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday-Friday, you might want to create a different schedule for Saturdays and Sundays (e.g., 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.). You can create multiple schedules in this way.

6. Once you are satisfied with your schedule, click Create at the lower right hand of the window.

Tips on NIS Scheduling :

  • All times in the web application are listed using a 24-hour clock (aka, military time in the U.S) so any time after 12:00pm noon will require you to add 12 hours. For example, 3 p.m. should be entered as 15:00 in the system and 9:30 p.m. would be 17:30.

  • All Notifications are delivered based on the internal clock of the mobile device. So if you establish a notification at 9:00, the notification will fire at 9 a.m. regardless of a user's time zone (e.g., it will fire at 9:00 am EST in the eastern U.S. and at 9:00 a.m. GMT in England).

  • You can create multiple NISs. For example, you may want to use different NISs for different times of the day. You could deliver a series of Prompts only in the mornings. You might call that NIS "Morning Check In" and schedule one random Notification between 8 and 11 a.m. You might have another set of Prompts you want to deliver in the afternoon. That NIS could be labeled "Afternoon Check In" and be scheduled between 1 and 5 p.m. Finally, an "Evening Check In" NIS could be scheduled between 7 and 10 p.m. There are any number of combinations of multiple NIS that you might create. The key is thinking through what experiences you want to capture and at what times of the day you think you should sample for those experiences.
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