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MIS Systems Thread, SIMS API access or import routine in Technical; Hi, I promise I have spent a fair amount of time researching before I've posted here, but apologies in advance ...
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    SIMS API access or import routine

    Hi,

    I promise I have spent a fair amount of time researching before I've posted here, but apologies in advance if I've missed the obvious.

    So, my question is (and I am waiting for a response from Capita but so far no joy), is there any way to update data within SIMS either via an API or import routine (I don't want to mess around with the SQL tables directly...I'm too long in the tooth to make that rookie mistake :-) )

    The reason is this - as a freelance programmer, I have written a piece of code for a local school that reports upon staff absence based upon the fact that they've not entered the building using their swipe card. This report then lists the staff who did not "swipe" that day and therefore are presumed absent. This information is then entered manually (shudder!!!!) onto SIMS.

    The next step is to allow staff to report themselves absent through a phone app and/or SMS messaging ... this is the easy bit from my perspective.

    However, being the programming nerd that I am, the thought of the staff then having to manually update SIMS with this information chills me to the core (OK, slight exaggeration).

    Hence, my question - can one update SIMS through an API or through batch file importing (like you can with Sage accounting software)

    Thanks in advance and apologies if I've asked something very obvious .... I did spend a couple of hours hunting around the net to try and find an answer.

    Dan

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    matt40k's Avatar
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    You'll want to get in contact with David Grashoff. Guff here > http://www.capita-sims.co.uk/files/s...document_0.pdf

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    David_Grashoff (20th November 2013)

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    @dangolding how did you get on?

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    vikpaw's Avatar
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    Sounds interesting as we have staff entry face scanners, and the limitation is that the MIS records absence, not presence, so you need to parse the daily data.
    If you're not working for a school, you'd need to pay to have access to the business objects, but it sounds like a system that if done right could be very profitable.

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    matt40k's Avatar
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    It'll be a bit of a minefield, at least in the UK. Can't image NUT would be happy hearing that absence is based on staff remembering their ID badges.

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    Quote Originally Posted by matt40k View Post
    It'll be a bit of a minefield, at least in the UK. Can't image NUT would be happy hearing that absence is based on staff remembering their ID badges.
    Heaven forbid a teacher should be expected to do anything to help their colleagues

    EDIT: just to be clear, that's not a dig at teachers
    Last edited by LosOjos; 26th November 2013 at 09:28 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by matt40k View Post
    It'll be a bit of a minefield, at least in the UK. Can't image NUT would be happy hearing that absence is based on staff remembering their ID badges.
    As with all registration systems if the electronic method doesn't work, use paper. Teachers should be well aware of this procedure! No badge = no scan, but it doesn't mean they shouldn't register themselves into the building.

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    I didn't say it's a no go, I just said it's a minefield, you have to tread carefully. It's also going to need to be flexible enough to support multiple access control systems as I doubt you could find much business with just 1 system. Guessing from the lack of response of @dangolding, he's either exited the minefield after David's pointed at the minefield sign or he is currently busy working his way safely across it

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    Most systems are quite good at reporting their data, it's just getting it parsed and made available to SIMS/xyzMis that is the problem. Also, usually absence needs a reason, sometimes permission etc. so it's not just a case of not here, so absent, someone will have to intervene with reasons and follow up later, so yeah it's a minefield, but technically 'should' be straight forward.
    Of course navigating the minefield with no manual or examples of code will lead to getting your head blown off.

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