I would love to see a feature within the Canvas platform that allows static fields to be assigned to the fields in each app. What I am looking for is the ability to make updates to an app without re-versioning it and keeping my export intact. I have a lot of consistent apps that get used over time and have occasional changes made to them, but from a reporting perspective it is a nightmare to have to export files from multiple versions, or to have to continually adjust the export to match columns from one version to another to preserve reporting that I do for my organization. I do a lot of Pivot tables and this would help increase efficiency if I could simply copy/paste rather than having to inspect each column to ensure they line up.
My proposal to correct:
On the back end of each Canvas app assign each field a static number and no matter what changes are made to the app, each field will output to the number it was assigned in reporting. For example. If I ask my team a question and it is the 13th item that I added to Canvas, it would be assigned #13 for good (as part of that app) for reporting output (or column M in Excel). If I later decided to remove that item or rearrange it so that it was in a different part of the app, it would still report out under #13 (column M) which would keep my reporting intact indefinitely and allow me to make whatever changes I needed to on my app at any time. As new fields would be added, regardless of their position within the app, they would just get the next available number and output as such in reporting.
I have to think that this would be a great value add not just for me, but for the Canvas user base who is doing output/reporting for their organization. I had proposed this to Canvas a while back and kind of got sidelined, but hopefully through this method I can get some traction with the users and Canvas!