In Review

Clear Hidden Child Field Values

Steve Smith 7 months ago in Productivity Management updated 5 days ago 7

It would be great to get an enhancement that automatically clears the value contained in a child field when it’s hidden based on the option selected in the parent field. We’ve run into various scenarios where we have activity EA’s with parent/child relationships (1 field will appear only if a specific value in another field is selected) and both fields are required when they appear on the screen. In some cases, the parent values is set and it causes the child to display, the child field then has a value entered, and then the activity is saved. Sometimes users go into the activity and update the parent field to a value that causes the child field to be hidden, but the value entered into the child field can’t be cleared. Even if the user selects <Not Selected> from the child field picklist before it’s hidden, the child field does not clear. This is problematic because if the value remains, the field continues to appear on DCT’s that show the field and the child field value still appears in reports that include the child field. It would be ideal to have the child field automatically clear if it is hidden based on the parent field selection.

We have a scenario where a task has a question to determine if further details are required, if they are then a number of child attributes are not displayed as an additional task will be assigned - the child attributes on the first task may or may not have been completed thus we would not want the values clearing. 

Asking the user at that point may then complicate the user experience and cause confusion.

I wonder if in the case of DCT based attributes there could be an option on the DCT to control whether child values are cleared or not?  

I am in agreement that having the <Not Selected> option is not as desirable as a pop up.  We often have users "overlooking" the <Not Selected> field.  I like the pop up idea the best with the Yes/No/Cancel options.  

Hi Eric,

Thanks for the details. It’s helpful to understand the use cases for not deleting the information. I personally like the idea of adding a pop-up that states "This action will remove fields currently visible, do you want to clear their data?" with "Yes/No/Cancel" buttons. Although allowing a user to select “<Not Selected>” in the child field would work, I worry that’s a detail users would need to be trained to (and would probably forget), whereas the pop-up would explicitly ask them what they want to do. I’m more than happy to talk through any options. I’m really hopeful that something can be done with this since it has been an ongoing pain point for us in various scenarios. Thanks for looking into it.


In Review

Hi All,

So wanted to talk through this a bit more as it can be somewhat more complicated when you take things like APIs, status actions and other areas of the product into the picture.

I understand the use case of User is on a Task with a DCT or the Activity Edit page and the change a value which makes the child become hidden.  In that use case, right in the UI experience we might be able to add something like a pop up message that says "This action will remove fields currently visible, do you want to clear their data?" with "Yes/No/Cancel" buttons or something like that but I would be nervous to just automatically wipe out the values in the field without asking.

Data can get into EAs in many ways.  You might have integrations populating hidden fields with values or filling in values that the UI would not actually allow.  Or status actions on workflow could be setting these values as well.  Or they could be default values set in the work request form definition, etc.  Aprimo cannot just assume that the data in the field was put there specifically by a user and therefore it is always ok to erase it can we?  I get very nervous about deleting customer entered data automatically.

I will look into your statement Steve:   Even if the user selects <Not Selected> from the child field picklist before it’s hidden, the child field does not clear.

That seems like a very reasonable use case that we should support because the user is specifically taking the action to clear the value so we know it is what they want to happen.

If we allow for this would that meet your needs or does this group really want us to simply wipe out the fields, given the other use cases I stated above?

Hi Eric,

I'm wondering if there's any update on this? I continue to run into situations where the current functionality is causing confusion/issues. I just want to check-in since it's been a while since I've heard anything. If you can let me know, it would be great. Thanks.


We see this as an issue as well and have submitted two separate tickets:  CS0029811 & CS0029563.

Aprimo CS has commented, "for cascading sections, if a user selects a parent value and populates field values in a section that is triggered to display based on that parent value and then change the parent value, the populated field values are not nulled even though the fields themselves no longer display."

We received the beloved "FAE" response with a workaround of using status actions on output ports in a workflow to clear out obsolete data.

Completely agree with this.  This has caused issues in our reporting that we have to manually correct.