Your First Ona Project Tutorial

Your first project tutorial


There are three requirements necessary for creating your first project in Ona:

  • Ona account
  • Excel or any spreadsheet software that can produce .xls or .xlsx files
  • Android smartphone or any device that can open a web browser

Ona is a web-based data management platform; you can use Ona from any computer or smart device with an internet connection. To start using Ona, you first need to create an Ona account. You can sign up for an account here.

Ona offers a variety of account options, both free and paying. The account you choose is based on the amount of functionality you require for your project(s). Visit the plans page for more information on account options and pricing.

Once your account is set up, you can start uploading your forms that you author in Excel or any other spreadsheet software that can produce .xls or .xlsx files. Ona automatically converts these files into the format required for mobile and web based data collection. After your forms are uploaded to your Ona account, you can start collecting data a variety of ways:

  1. via an Android smartphone using a free mobile application called Open Data Kit (ODK) Collect; or
  2. via a computer or any smart device that can open the form’s web url.

Ona supports IE, Safari, Google Chrome, and Mozilla web browsers for data collection; however, we strongly recommend using Google Chrome for form submissions if possible, as Chrome supports the most features and provides the best performance.

Sign up for an Ona account

You need to go to the Join Ona page and register for an Ona account.

  • Enter your name, username, password, and email address for your account. These fields are mandatory.
  • Then, click on Create my account button. You will immediately be signed in to your account. An automated email will also be sent to the email address you indicated to verify your email.

Create your project

Create a New Project, that will contain all of the forms and data related to the project. Set sharing and form submissions permissions for the project. To create a new project:

  • Click the “New Project” green button: Located on the right side of your projects page.
  • Name the project: Enter the Project Name; Health Facilities and select the Project category as Health. Then click on the Create Project button
  • Share options for your Project: The project can either be Public or Private, a Public Project is accessible to anyone on the internet with the project link while a Private Project is only accessible to Ona users to whom the project has been shared with. Click on Public to make the project Public. We’ve made the Mali project public so that it is accessible for all Ona user’s.
  • Collaborate with others! Add project collaborators, type the username of the collaborator to invite them to view or contribute to a project. Then, give them permissions that will grant them access to the project. Read more on permissions levels for more info. Then, click on the Done button;

Upload your survey(s) to your Ona project

Now you’re ready to Add a form! After creating a Project, you can publish forms for use with ODK Collect or Enketo. You can read more on how the form that is uploaded is designed in this guide.

Use ODK Collect or Enketo to submit data

Next you need to use either ODK Collect or Enketo to submit data to the server. For details on how to submit data either tool, read the Data Collection guide.

View your project data

After submitting data from ODK Collect or via Enketo to the server you can now export the data as a nicely formatted csv,xls or kml (for Google Earth)