View PDF / Print Preview Option


It would be very helpful if you could view the default PDF output for an app submission without having to submit / sync first.

I realize that PDF generation is handled by the back-end and that a large part of the concern is that the endpoint / device being used might not have enough horsepower to render a PDF... but:

- Maybe a slider switch could be added in the GoCanvas Mobile settings tab to allow the user to enable/disable PDF previews based on what they need and their device capabilities or something?  That way it woudn't be required, just possible.

Another thought might be some kind of "print preview submission" that isn't really a final submission but does a "mini-sync" with just the data for that current submission (and none of the other items that are uploaded / downloaded during a normal sync).  This mini-sync could give the submission to the back-end just long enough to spit out a PDF and get it back on the device... then the mini-sync data / PDF / temp submission could be removed once the device confirms receipt of the PDF... Of course this one would require connectivity (which most folks have most of the time).

Yet another thought might be to reconfigure the submission review modal window so that it is essentially the same as the PDF output without actually being a PDF if that makes sense.

We get frequent requests and wishes for this.  Many times users want to just have a glance at the output to ensure that things are accurate before they submit... but they have to submit in order to see it.

Here's hoping.



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  • Official comment

    Good News, Everyone!

    We have just released the functionality for users to preview a PDF on mobile before completing a submission!

    Take a look at the release notes for this feature (and several others!) here, and be sure to check out the Help Center topic for more details on how to preview the Submission PDF on mobile.

    Thank you all for your detailed feedback and use case examples on this feature. I know this has been a long time coming, and having the votes and comments here really helped get this one out the door!

  • ...much of this is a repeat of Nathan's comments above which are quite comprehensive, I might add...

    We too are finding that this is a desperately needed feature especially with regards to call reports and timesheets. The "review submission" option restricts the end user to view loop entries a single page at a time and isnt friendly. On the other hand, when the pdf is previewed, the end user quickly sees all of the data at once and can quickly correct inconsistencies prior to submission. This works because our eyes tend to scan documentation and pick out inconsistencies by comparing one line entry to another (such as dates and times). If you think about it, the feature we are asking for is already built in. We simply want to be able to invoke it prior to triggering any emails. For example, when an end user has the option to edit and resubmit, the new submission is simply updating the database. Therefore, the preview could simply be a "submission" that is stripped of the emails (...a "Review PDF" link below the "Review Submission" option on the Complete Submission" page, perhaps?. Then, when the submit button is used, it simply updates the information to the final copy and generates the emails. 

  • My feature request is somewhat similar to above. I would like to print my receipts to a mobile Bluetooth printer once the submissions are made. This way I can print the receipt s the customer can have the immediate hard copy while they check the soft copy later. I checked with support and they said I should be able to view past submissions using the History feature and looking up the receipt by a date range and selecting. This does not work on the Samsung Android I am using as the submissions are un-tappable.

    It would be good to have the ap print out the receipt.

  • Nobody likes signing things in blind faith. I had a salesman at my house selling me windows. They have an app (not GoCanvas) where you have to sign not knowing exactly what it is you are signing. It is a very awkward situation when you are about to enter into a very costly financial endeavor and you are signing away not knowing exactly what you are getting yourself into. I don't think GoCanvas is any different in this aspect. I am sure quite a few sales have been lost because people weren't willing to sign things blindly like that.   

    I want to be able to create apps that forward information to managers for approval/rejection. The managers need to be able to see attachments and photos in order to make informed decisions. The old saying, "A picture is worth a thousand words" comes to mind.

    Using the hand-off process and asking a manager to go through an app and click through pages and use a bunch of icon fields (without even a thumbnail view) in order to review a bunch of photos wouldn't go over very well. (Imagining Captain Kirk from the old TV series sitting there in his captain's chair when the Yeoman's would bring up things for his signature, what would he see if it were a GoCanvas hand-off?) 

    I could always make the app finish and submit a final submission/pdf but then I lose the workflow 'reject' function. Sometimes, a rejection is not an absolute, but maybe just some additional information is needed before approval. Suppose the manager does approve, his/her signature would then have to be somewhere else and not on the original app.

    I can think of ways of working around this by dispatching apps from other apps using Zapier but adding a PDF preview/presentation mode would be great for this.

    I am going to try the workflow pdf workaround listed below and see how it goes. For now, I plan to dispatch a link into a new app that can be clicked to preview. However, it would be really great if this preview were a native function.

    (Edited )
  • I agree with some of this!  Our users would love to be able to see the info and totals in one spot before they "handoff" to the next user or submit to ensure there are no errors.   Would love to see this feature!

  • Agree! I just rolled this app out to a portion of my team internally and it was the first piece of feedback they gave me.

  • Hi all,

    Thanks for your thoughtful feedback, as always. I see where you're coming from in all of your individual situations, and how this feature would help create a better experience for you and your customers. The Product Team is aware of this feature request and I'll be sure to share any information I can about its status.

    In the meantime, I encourage you to explore the workaround mentioned in Keith's comment that Sara provides in response to this post. While we're rooting for the native functionality you're describing, maybe this can help minimize the pain points you're encountering right now for the time being. 

    Thanks again,

  • This is a very simple print option that could have been done many months ago after the requests! Everything else is good, but I am going to look for another provider because I absolutely need that print option. Can't believe this.

  • Howdy Konstantin,

    Thank you for this feedback! We understand that this is a point of frustration. We absolutely want to include a solution for this issue in GoCanvas and we are actively investigating a path forward.

  • Is this still being actively worked on? We're also using this for our technician's time sheets and our customers need to see the final pdf prior to signing. The current set up makes this very difficult.

  • This isn't currently being worked on directly, but the work that needs to be done to enable this functionality IS being worked on (if that makes any sense). In order for this functionality to exist, you have to be able to sync an in-progress Submission to the cloud; that is being actively worked on. Once that is done, a lot of features, including this one, become possible. Once that functionality is out in the world, we'll certainly do some Release Notes on it, and have a better idea of when the follow-on features (like this one) might happen.

  • Howdy All,

    We are very excited to share the news from our Product Managers that a PDF Preview option is on the roadmap and in the works!

    We really appreciate the detailed feedback and use cases that have been shared. This information helps our Product Managers have a clear picture of how best to implement new features.

    We don't have an estimated timeframe for release, but our Product Team understands the need for this functionality and they are working hard to deliver a PDF Preview option. Once we have additional release details, we will share them here, so please stay tuned! 

  • Has there been any further push to enable this feature on the GoCanvas for Windows client?

  • Hi Nathan,

    Feature parity for the Windows client is still being rolled out but I am not sure when this feature will be added to Windows client. I know they are making incremental progress and I will add release note to the appropriate posts when I know more.


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