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I'm working on an interface for allowing users to submit data via a button and wanted some advice on the best approach. The data for one or more whole months has to be submitted at precisely the last day of the current month. I was thinking of displaying the button on the last day of every month. The moment the button is pressed and the data is submitted, it turns grey until the last day of the next month and so on.

Although it would be possible to automate the submission of the data, the purpose of the button is a legal requirement to ensure that the data has been submitted by the individual "manually", this is due to the sensitive nature of the information which has serious financial implications.

The department receiving the data wants to receive it in batches of at least one month or more and no less as it would be inefficient for them to receive individual responses.

What do you think?

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Sounds like this would be similar to timesheet submission applications. Maybe have a look at a few of those for some ideas. –  Chris Aug 13 '12 at 21:53
    
But what happens if the person doesn't press submit until the 15th? When would the next one be? Do you intend to only show your button once a month? –  Yisela Aug 13 '12 at 22:57

2 Answers 2

up vote 6 down vote accepted

It is always advisable to have a more intuitive design to let the user know when the button gets enabled and disabled. In your case if you say every 30 days the button will get enabled then let it be displayed and have small text inside the button which is dynamic to say "DAYS LEFT". It takes out the burden from the user to calculate the days by them self and also placing it directly on the button will help them related and find the same.

It is never recommended to hide an option which will be available after a certain time or after a certain action. It is always good to have it displayed with a hint on how or when it will be enabled. Hiding such option will distract the users and they will start finding other options to perform the same task.

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Is a button the best design here? If something should happen once a month and only once a month, why not allow the user to pick a date and then have it happen automatically on their chosen date?

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