Configuring Journals

This article provides information about the configuration options available in relation to Journals, including Journal Settings, Journal Types and Templates. 

Privileges: Staff require the 'Edit System Preferences' Staff Account privilege in order to access the 'Journals' tab in System Preferences where configuration is completed.

Audience: Authorised Representatives, Operations Management


The following list summarises the content within this article. Click on the links below to take you to the relevant sections:

Where are Journals configured?

Journals are configured on the 'Journals' tab in System Preferences, accessed via the Dashboard.

Only Staff with the 'Edit System Preferences' privilege as granted in their Staff Account are able to access this area of SupportAbility. 

The Journals tab comprises two sections as follows:

  • Journal Settings
  • Journal Types

Return to Summary

Journal Settings

The 'Journal Settings' section contains four Journal settings as displayed here: 

This allows the configuration of: 

  • Default Journal Type
  • Default Goal Evidence Journal Type
  • Lock journal entries after
  • Include Journal Actions In Incomplete Client Review

More information about each setting has been outlined below.

Return to Summary

Default Journal Type

The 'Default Journal Type' for newly created journal entries can be set here.

This means that when Staff create a new Client Journal entry, the Journal Type will default to what is set here. What you set here is important as more often than not, Staff do not edit the Journal Type: 

Return to Summary

Default Goal Evidence Journal Type

Setting a Default Goal Evidence Journal Type here: 

Ensures that when Staff create a Client Journal from a Goal record: 

Or from within the 'Progress Evidence and Assessments' section of a Goal Strategy: 

The Journal Type as configured here, will be selected by default: 

We recommend  leaving the Default Goal Evidence Journal Type set to Goal Evidence. 

Return to Summary

Lock journal entries after

The timeframe in which a journal entry is locked after creation can be customised here. By default, Journal entries are locked after five days.

Within this period, only the Author of the Journal or a Team Leader for the Service and Site this Journal entry has been created for have access to, including the ability to edit the Journal.

Journal entries can be locked after a minimum of one day (the day following the entry) or any day timeframe greater than this.

Return to Summary

Include Journal Actions In Incomplete Client Review

N.B. This is an optional setting and is under review for removal in the future.

When an organisation has the 'Include Journal Actions In Incomplete Client Review' setting activated on the Journals tab in System Preferences:

It means that when 'Journal Actions' have been set as  Mandatory for a specific Journal Type e.g. Complaints: 

Whenever a Journal Action is missing for a Journal of that Journal Type, an Incomplete Warning will display in the 'Client Warnings' bar:

If your organisation does not want Incomplete Warnings to populate for this reason, we recommend leaving this setting unchecked.

For more information refer to the  Incomplete Client Records and Search Report article linked below.

Return to Summary

Journal Types

A default list of Journal Types is included in all SupportAbility installations. We recommend reviewing this list, deleting the Journal Types that are not relevant (or in use) for your organisation, editing any that need renaming, and adding any that are missing to ensure the available Journal Types Staff Members can select from when entering Journals are applicable for your organisation:

Return to Summary

Adding a Journal Type

Journal Types can be added for Client, Staff or Contact records, by selecting the '+ Add a new journal type' button:

There are four parts to adding a 'Journal Type':

  • Select the entity which this Journal Type is 'For' - Client, Staff, or Contact
  • Enter the name of the 'Journal Type'
  • Select the relevant option as to whether Journal Actions (tasks) are required for this Journal Type - None, Prompt, or Mandatory, more regarding this has been outlined further below
  • Create a Template by entering subject headings to prompt users when completing a Journal of this type, more regarding this has been outlined further below

Return to Summary

Journal Actions

Journal Actions are effectively tasks linked to Journal entries, that require action and can be assigned for follow-up: 

Journal actions will populate by default on the Dashboards of both the Staff member who created the action assigned to the Staff member the action has been assigned to: 

Journal Actions are an optional feature by default, however, your organisation may decide Journal Actions are either recommended or required for specific Journal Types. 

Journal Actions can be configured for each Journal Type as follows:

  • 'None' (not required)
  • 'Prompt' (prompt to add an action, if required), or 
  • 'Mandatory' (this Journal Type must have an associated Journal Action) 

If a Journal Type is set to having Journal Actions Prompt, a reminder message will appear, however, the Journal can still be saved without a Journal Action being created:

If a Journal Type is set to having Journal Actions Mandatory, a warning message will appear advising the Staff Member that this is required and it will not be possible to save the Journal entry without a linked Journal Action:

N.B. We only recommend using the Mandatory setting for Journal Actions where a Journal Action is required for every Journal created using this Journal Type, as this will force Staff to create an Action before the Journal can be saved. 

Return to Summary

Journal Templates

Basic templates can be created for various Journal Types. These templates can help prompt staff with the required information to be recorded for that specific type of journal.

For example, a template has been created for the Access and Entry journal type to ensure Staff record the following information when creating a Client Journal of this type:

  • Access Point:
  • Entry Date:
  • Pass Number:
  • Returned Key:  Yes/No

When the Access and Entry Journal Type is selected, this template populates within the notes field e.g:

Return to Summary

Editing or Deleting a Journal Type

The name of a Journal Type can be edited at any time. It is important to note that if the Journal Type is in use, then this will update the name of the Journal Type for all Journals retrospectively. 

Journal Count

The Journal Count is visible on the Journals tab in System Preferences and displays the number of times that a Journal of this type has been used:

Return to Summary

Deleting a Journal Type

We generally recommend only deleting a Journal Type with no associated entries i.e. '0' in the Journal Count. Please refer to the Journal Count section in this article for more information.  

'Journal Types' that are in use can be deleted if required, and once actioned the following occurs:

  • Client Journal Notes which had this 'Client Journal Type' selected, will be retained in order to preserve records and evidence of Service delivery.
  • Within the relevant Journal Notes, the 'Journal Type' will revert to 'Other' with the addition of a second Journal Type field displaying the previously selected Journal Type name.

Original Journal Note:

Journal Note following editing/deleting the Journal Type:

Searching for Journals is not as easy using the Journal Type of 'Other' though, as you need to type in an exact match for what you're looking for. Therefore, your organisation may choose to retain Journal Types that have been used for historic reference and so these types of Journals can be easily identified. 

The Journal List generated from a Journal Search contains a column entitled 'Type' which displays the Journal Type originally assigned to a Journal. Therefore any Journal Types which have previously been deleted or edited will still be visible in the Journal List:

Reinstating deleted Journal Types

Deleted 'Journal Types' can only be re-instated by creating a new Journal Type in System Preferences with the same name. Once this has been completed, any existing Journal Notes which have 'Other' plus the same Journal Type name, will revert to this Journal Type, and will no longer have the Journal Type of 'Other'.

Return to Summary

Still need help? Contact Us Contact Us