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Quick Start Guide for Publisher Users

Welcome to NextRequest! Your organization is using NextRequest to process public records requests. This document covers the most frequent actions that you will be taking as a Publisher in NextRequest. A printer friendly of this guide is attached and can be downloaded at the bottom of the page.

Click on a link below to jump to that section.

This document only covers the most common uses of a subset of the NextRequest features. For a guide to other actions you can take in NextRequest see the final section Other Features.

How to Sign Into Your Account

You can access your account by going to your organization's NextRequest portal and clicking Sign In in the upper right. If you’ve signed in before, you can enter your email address and password now. If it’s the first time you are signing in, in follow these steps to activate your account:

  1. After clicking the Sign In link, click the link “Lost password / Can’t sign in?”
  2. Enter your email address and click the SUBMIT button
  3. When prompted, enter your password and confirm it
  4. Find the confirmation email in your inbox (check your spam folder) and click the link

For more information about how to sign into your account click here


How to Know if You’ve Been Assigned to a Request

NextRequest will send you an email notification when you are assigned to a request. To access a request from a notification, just click the orange button “View Request #XX-XXXX” and you will be taken directly to the request. You will need to be logged in to update the request.

To view a list of all request assigned to you in NextRequest follow these steps:

  1. Sign in to NextRequest
  2. Click All Requests at the top of the screen
  3. On the left under “My Requests”, check the boxes “Point of Contact” and “Staff”

How to Assign a Request

You can assign a request in 3 ways: You can assign a Point of Contact (responsible for fulfilling the request), Support Staff (responsible for locating responsive documents), or Departments (triggering automatic assignment of those Departments’ Point of Contact and Support Staff)

To assign a Point of Contact:

  1. Sign in to NextRequest and go to the request you want to assign a Point of Contact to
  2. Find the Staff section, then select the Edit icon () next to the current Point of Contact
  3. Click the current Point of Contact, then select a new user from the drop-down menu
  4. Click the SAVE button.

To assign Support Staff:

  1. Sign in to NextRequest and go to the request you want to add Support Staff to
  2. Find the Staff section, then click the Add icon () under Support
  3. Select the staff member you would like to add to the request
  4. (Optional) Enter a message for the new Support Staff
  5. Click SAVE button

To assign Department(s):

  1. Sign in to NextRequest and go to the request you want to assign a department to
  2. Click the Edit icon () next to Departments
  3. Click the Assign Departments field and select the department(s) you want to add
  4. (Optional) Change the Point of Contact for the request
  5. Click the SAVE button

For more information about assigning requests click here


How to Add a Document to a Request

As part of fulfilling requests you will likely be uploading responsive documents, but there are actually two ways you can add documents to a request! The first way is by uploading documents from your computer, and the other way is by copy and pasting a link to where the documents are already available elsewhere.

To upload documents from your computer, follow these steps:

  1. Sign in to NextRequest and go to the request you want to upload the document(s) to
  2. Click the Add Document icon () in the upper right
  3. Click the UPLOAD FILES button
  4. In the menu that appears, you can either click the box to browse for files OR drag and drop your file(s) into the box.
  5. If you choose to browse your computer for files, select the file(s) you would like to upload
  6. (Optional) Enter the name of a new or existing folder that you would like the documents to be stored in
  7. (Optional) Add a Description and Document Date:
    • Description: a description of the document. Include any keywords that will help when searching for the document.
    • Document Date: the date that the document was created/last updated
  8. Click the SAVE button

To add a link to the documents section:

  1. Sign in to NextRequest and go to the request you want to upload the document(s) to
  2. Click the Add Document icon () in the upper right
  3. Click LINK at the top next to the UPLOAD tab
  4. Paste the URL to the link where the document is availble
  5. (Optional) Add a description and date for the link
  6. (Optional) Enter a folder name to place the link in
  7. Click the SAVE button

For more information about adding documents to a request click here

How to Post a Message to a Request

As part of fulfilling a request you may need to post a message, for example to give instructions to support staff or to ask the requester to clarify the scope of their request. There are two types of messages you can post to a request

To post an external message for the requester:

  1. Sign in to NextRequest and go to the request you want to post a message about
  2. Click the Envelope icon () in the upper right
  3. (Optional) Click the Insert Template button and select a template
  4. (Optional) Continue editing your message with any requester-specific information
  5. Check the box for Yes, Send to Requester (required)
  6. Click the SAVE button

To post an internal message for other staff:

  1. Sign in to NextRequest and go to the request you want to post a message about
  2. Make sure the Chat icon () is selected in the upper right
  3. Type your message in the box and click the SAVE button

For more more information about posting messages to a request click here

How to add an internal note to the timeline

You can use internal notes as a way to update the timeline with important, staff only information that won't send a notification to everyone on the request. You can use internal notes for updates on why a request is overdue, why it is not being fulfilled, why its paused, or any other particular status.

Steps to create an internal note:

  1. Navigate to the request you'd like to update
  2. Click the pencil icon in the tool bar ()
  3. Enter in the text of your note
  4. Click SAVE

How to Release a Document

You can release a document to either the requester only or the general public. To do this follow these steps:

  1. Sign in to NextRequest and go to the request with the document you want to release
  2. Locate the document in the Staff Only part of the Documents section
  3. Click the Change Visibility icon () next to the document
  4. Select Requester Only or Public
  5. Click the SAVE button

For more information about releasing documents click here

How to Log Hours Spent on a Request

Depending on your organization’s policy, you may be asked to log the time you spend on a request. To do this follow these steps:

  1. Sign in to NextRequest and go to the request that you want to log hours for
  2. Click the Log Hours icon ()
  3. Enter the time spent and a description of what you were doing
  4. Click the SAVE button

For more information about logging hours spent on a request click here

How to Close a Request

When all work is complete on a request, either because all responsive documents have been released or because the request has been denied, you will want to close it out with an explanation. To do this follow these steps:

  1. Sign in to NextRequest and go to the request that you want to close
  2. Click the Checkmark icon () in the upper right
  3. Click the empty field and select a Closure Reason from the drop down
  4. (Optional) Edit or add to the message text
  5. Click the SAVE button


How to Publish a Request

You may choose at any point to publish a request so that it is available to anybody who visits the website. This is separate process from making responsive documents on a request available to the public. To publish a request follow these steps:

  1. Sign in to NextRequest and go to the request that you want to publish
  2. Click the Change button in the orange visibility bar across the top of the request
  3. Select the Publish button and click the SAVE button

For more information about publishing requests click here

Other Features

NextRequest has many other features that you may use less frequently but are still very useful. Click each link below for more information: