Digital Data Collection Tools for Reporting

Finland-Somalia Association experimented using KoBoToolbox, Google’s reporting tools possibilities and Excel’s automation to enhance reporting of its development project in Somalia. 


During the experiment, Finland-Somalia Association has been implementing two Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) supported development projects in Somalia in areas of environment and health. Environmental project management entails gathering and tracking data regarding seedlings planted, distribution, and survival rate, among other variables. The mobile health clinic project entailed gathering data regarding various patients’ sex-disaggregated data and referrals. 

One of the main challenges has been the under and non-utilization of digital and real-time project reporting tools. The use of paper-based reporting and analysis tools has been inefficient. The experiment aimed at enhancing reporting practices of ongoing projects to save time, generate quality reports, and increase the technological know-how of implementing partners in Somalia. Kobotoolbox, a free and open-source mobile data collection tool, was tested in both projects. 


Using Kobotoolbox, over 10 thousand patients’ data was captured and managed digitally during the experiment period. Several lessons and best practices on digital data gathering using Kobotoolbox and evidence-based project reporting were learned from the experiment. These lessons were ultimately shared with other development organizations in Somalia.  


Use of Kobotoolbox is on scale, with new forms developed for capturing more valuables in the two projects. 

Finland Somalia Association: Digital Data Collection Tools for Reporting (PDF)