NGLMS-CR: A Web-Based Clerical Review Tool

Main Article Content

James Farrow
Miro Palfy


Native applications often require special permissions to install and update which may not always be available in secure/controlled sensitive-data environments. Deploying new features can be time-consuming and introduce delays. The Next Generation Linkage System Clerical Review tool (NGLMS-CR) is a configurable web application which side-steps these issues. The NGLMS-CR allows rapid response to changing project requirements.

Objectives and Approach
We wanted a lightweight platform-independent tool to run in any modern web-browser. This avoids a need for special administrative privileges and allows rapid deployment/update. The NGLMS-CR communicates via a simple RESTful protocol to a server managing user-permissions, workflows and review data. Data is stored in a relational or graph database. The NGLMS-CR does not require a graph database.

Users see various workpools (collections of records) and work through these at their own pace. Different workpools may be configured for different requirements, e.g. clusters requiring special expertise, clusters requiring higher data security, overly-large clusters &c. Custom workflows are built around workpools. Individual clusters can have customisable status indicators displayed to highlight integrity checks and other information, e.g. a cluster containing multiple birth records or containing records with inconsistent gender information.

The tool also promotes ergonomic and health objectives as well as collecting metrics about review activity. The review session tracks reviewer engagement and gives feedback on the situation so far: how long has been spent reviewing; how long activity has been undertaken without a break. The user is given visual warnings when sessions extend beyond a set time. Activity is logged and metrics regarding throughput/accuracy collated for analysis.
In real-time manual clerical review tasks the customisable nature of the NGLMS-CR has proven important. Changes are immediately visible to users and workflow and status icons changes available with no delay while software is ‘rolled out’.

Conclusion / Implications
Uncoupling review from any particular linkage system enables flexibility in project administration. A web-based review application may run on any system and requires minimal administrative permissions. This facilitates deployment in sensitive environments. Customisable workflow allows quick creation of ad hoc projects/tasks, even mid-project as new situations are discovered. Customisable cluster integrity checks allows cluster- and project-sensitive feedback to be rapidly deployed to aid review. By being flexible and independent the NGLMS-CR can supplement and complement existing linkage and review processes.

Article Details

How to Cite
Farrow, J. and Palfy, M. (2020) “NGLMS-CR: A Web-Based Clerical Review Tool”, International Journal of Population Data Science, 5(5). doi: 10.23889/ijpds.v5i5.1627.

Most read articles by the same author(s)