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Graduate Outcomes Contact Details record 2017/18

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Provider Portal User Guide

Version 1.2 Produced 2019-01-14



The HESA Identity System (IDS) enables users to access the Graduate Outcomes provider portal. Users are assigned IDS roles and each role has different access rights within the portal.

Please note that users must accept their IDS roles before they will be able to access the provider portal. More information on the HESA Identity System can be found in our user guide.

Details of the currently available IDS roles can be found in the table below. Additional IDS roles will be made available in the future. The full terms and conditions for each IDS role can be viewed in the Identity System.

Graduate Outcomes Record Contact This role coordinates the interaction of a Provider with the Graduate Outcomes portal including the assignment of other HESA Identity System Organisation Roles to individuals at the Provider. Every Provider must have one Record Contact.
Graduate Outcomes Admin This role assigns other HESA Identity System Organisation Roles to individuals at the Provider.
Graduate Outcomes Contact Details User This role coordinates the graduate contact details collated by the Provider and sent to HESA for the purposes of the Graduate Outcomes survey. Where a Provider can appoint a Contact Details User within HESA’s Identity System, at least one Contact Details User must be appointed.
Graduate Outcomes Personalisation User This role coordinates the personalisation of the Graduate Outcomes portal for the Provider, including uploading the Provider’s logo and the selection of opt-in question banks. Every Provider must have at least one Personalisation User.


Once a user has accepted their IDS role they can access the provider portal by accessing Graduate Outcomes Provider Portal, which will prompt them to log into the HESA Identity System.

From there, you will be taken to the provider portal homepage. Here you need to select the collection and cohort that you wish to view. Details of which graduates fall into each cohort can be found on the Data Collection Schedule.


The following sections of the user guide are relevant for this user:

  • Population file
  • Uploading contact details
  • Using the web form – uploading and amending contact details
  • Quality report
  • Progress bar
  • Approval
  • Updating contact details
  • Non-responders


Population files for each cohort can be downloaded from the provider portal via the ‘Population file’ tab. These can be downloaded in XML format. For those users that require the population file in CSV format this video demonstrates how to open an XML file in Excel.

Please click here to view video.

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For those providers who return student data to HESA, the population file will be automatically generated from your Student or AP Student return.

For other providers, such as further education (FE) Providers, the information for the population file will be taken from the appropriate student data collection, e.g. the Consolidated Data Return (CDR) from DfENI.

Please note for Cohort A the population file will not be finalised until the corresponding AP Student (CXX054) and Student record (CXX051) have been signed off. Therefore, Graduate Outcomes Record Contacts are advised to liaise with colleagues responsible for submitting student data to HESA, to confirm the final population for Cohort A.


Under the ‘Contact details’ tab on the provider portal home page and then ‘File upload’, you will be able to upload an XML file containing your graduates’ contact details. Select the ‘Choose File’ button, then ‘Upload file’. The details will populate in the ‘Web form’ tab.

The system allows multiple file uploads; for example, you can upload your graduates’ contact details in batches. To successfully load details into the system, the file cannot have any schema or structural errors (please see ‘Types of quality rules’ section for more information). When uploading the same graduate in a subsequent file based on a matching HUSID, the original data will be overwritten with data from the latest file.

A history of the uploaded files can be found in a table at the bottom of the ‘File upload’ screen. The Status column will detail whether the file has successfully loaded into the system.

If you choose to, you can enter your graduates’ contact details directly into the web form rather than using the ‘File upload’ option.

In uploading graduate contact details to the provider portal, Graduate Outcomes Contact Details Users acknowledge that:

  • a) this action involves the processing of personal data;
  • b) they have undertaken any data protection and security training specified by their provider; and
  • c) they will not process data within the provider portal for any purpose other than a task allocated to them by their provider.


The web form can be used for editing graduates’ contact details; click the ‘Contact details’ tab on the provider portal home page and then ‘Web form’.

There are search and filter functionalities to help find individual graduates.

You need to select the HUSID/FEPUSID for the graduate you wish to edit.

Please note that OWNSTU, Forenames and Surname cannot be edited and are greyed-out on the screen. This is due to these fields being pre-populated from the Student, AP student or CDR record. If you are aware of any changes to either Forenames and/or Surname this can be done in the change fields: Forenames change/Surname change. Once any changes are made, make sure that you press Save.

Within the web form you can also download the contact details records entered to date in CSV format, by scrolling to the bottom of the page and selecting ‘Download (.csv)’. If you have any filters applied to your data then these will be applied to the download.


Details of any quality rules triggering on a contact details file can be found in the ‘Contact Details’ tab, and then ‘Quality Report’. These will be listed as errors, warnings and switched and will either be Provider or Record level rules (explained in the table below). Errored records need to be resolved as these contact details will not be able to be approved. However, where an error is triggering for a genuine reason, please request a switch by emailing the Liaison team with an explanation for this and a switch request can be sent to the relevant funding council for approval.

Warnings should prompt the provider to check that the data returned is genuine.

By selecting the hyperlink for each type of rule, the affected graduates will be displayed. If you then wish to edit the contact details for one of these graduates you can do so by selecting their ID which will take you to the web form.

Types of quality rules

There are three types of quality rules that can trigger on the contact details. These are Structural, Provider and Record level. These can either be errors or warnings. All errors will need to be rectified for it to be possible to approve the submission.

Rule level Description Example
Structural These rules will prevent your latest file being loaded into the system because required information is missing. SURNAME.02 - The surname returned in the file does not match the surname in the Graduate Outcomes population.
Provider These rules are applied across the whole submission to date (all files that have successfully loaded). These rules are generally triggered when a threshold for a certain condition is exceeded. EMAIL.03 - More than five percent of graduates have no email address returned but have a telephone number. There should be at least one email address returned.
Record These rules trigger for individual graduate records EMAIL.01 - No email or telephone number has been returned for the graduate.

A full list of the quality rules can be found on the coding manual.


A progress bar is located on the ‘contact details’ main tab. Within here, you’ll also find it in the file upload, web form and quality report tabs. This bar informs the provider of the status of their survey collection across 6 cogs.

Each graduate can only have one status, meaning each graduate in the surveyable population will appear once across the six cogs below. Each graduate should move from left to right over the cohort, but may move back if we have exhausted contact details.

The progress bar contains the following information:

  1. No details – this is the number of records for which no contact details have been supplied within a provider’s surveyable population.
  2. Have issues – this is the number of records where we have contact details but they have quality issues that need to be resolved before they can be approved. These can be found in the ‘Quality report’ tab under ‘Contact details’.
  3. Awaiting approval – this is the number of records that have contacts details with no issues but are waiting to be approved. This cog will continue to change within each cohort to reflect where contact details have been exhausted and providers are required to supply alternatives. Details on how to approve graduate contact details can be found in the Approval section below.
  4. Sent for survey – this is the number of records that have been sent to the contact centre for surveying, but for which the survey has not yet been started or completed by the graduate. As graduates start or complete the survey, this number will reduce as they will move into the last two cogs (as relevant). If a graduate’s contact details are accurate but they have simply not engaged with the survey in any way, they will remain in this cog until they do.
  5. Survey started – this is the number of graduates that have started the survey but have not yet submitted it. This means they could have clicked the link in the email and / or be anywhere in the survey but have not completed the core questions. Our engagement strategy is designed to encourage these graduates to complete the survey.
  6. Surveyed – this is the total number of graduates from a provider that have completed the core questions.

Note – graduates who have chosen to opt-out will either appear in 'sent for survey' or 'survey started' depending on whether they engaged with the survey prior to this request.

How to check statuses

The ‘survey started’ and ‘surveyed’ cogs show the number of cumulative responses up to and including the previous day. This is updated in the provider portal each morning.

To determine what stage in the survey your graduates are at you can either:

  • Click on each of the cogs in the progress bar or
  • Use the status filter on the web form tab – from there you will see the status on the 'quality status' column. See above for definitions of each status.

Additional status filters

The following statuses do not appear in the progress bar but they may be returned in the web form:

  • Non surveyable – these are graduates that are recorded as Graduate.GRADSTATUS 01 (deceased) or 03 (serious illness).
  • Unknown – you should not see this returned for any graduates.


Before valid graduate contact details can be used for the Graduate Outcomes survey, they must be approved by the submitting provider. Graduate contact details records can only be approved once they have no quality errors associated with them and they are at the ‘Awaiting Approval’ stage on the progress bar as in the image below.

Please note that it is only possible to approve records for cohort A once the corresponding Student/AP Student file has been signed off, therefore, we recommend liaising with those responsible for this return at your provider.

Under the ‘Contact details’ tab go to ‘Approval’, here you will have a list of records that can be approved. The provider portal will allow single or multiple valid graduate contact details records to be selected for approval. This can be done by ticking the box for a single record or selecting the ‘Check all’ box and then ‘Approve’ at the bottom of the table.

Once you have selected ‘Approve’ a message similar to that below will be displayed in the provider portal:

Once you have done this the approved records will then move to ‘Sent to survey’ on the progress bar.

Contact details must be approved for each cohort by the approval deadline in the data collection schedule.


Providers will be able to update contact details where necessary until the final updates deadline specified for each cohort. Details of the deadlines can be found in the data collection schedule. If any updates are made to contact details, they will need to be approved again. After the final update deadline, it is not possible to send any further updates to the contact centre.


Where graduate contact details have been approved and sent to the contact centre, if it has not been possible to elicit a response from a graduate or the contact details provided are not viable (e.g. receive bounce backs from an email address), then there is an expectation that providers must attempt to provide HESA with further contact details.

These records will be highlighted in the provider portal via a change of status in the web form. Providers will receive a weekly email notification from the provider portal if they have any of these records to review.

Providers can supply updated contact details, either by uploading a new file or amending details in the web form and then approving the new graduate contact details.


The following sections of the user guide are relevant for this user:

  • Uploading a provider logo
  • Opt-in question banks
  • Adding careers service URL


Providers have the option of uploading their logo to personalise the Graduate Outcomes online survey made available to that provider’s graduates. The inclusion of your provider’s logo is likely to encourage graduates to respond to the survey; we strongly recommend that providers take up this option. If a provider uploads their logo to the provider portal, it will only be included in the banner at the top of its online survey and will not be used by HESA on any other documentation or for any other purpose. This personalisation of the online survey is likely to encourage graduates to respond to the survey and consequently improve provider response rates.

A provider’s logo can only be uploaded to the Graduate Outcomes portal by users holding a Graduate Outcomes Personalisation User role within the HESA Identity System and should not be uploaded by that role holder unless approved by a member of staff who has delegated authority from the Accountable Officer/ Head of Provider to do so.

In uploading the Provider’s logo, the Graduate Outcomes Personalisation User acting on behalf of the provider will confirm that HESA is granted a non-exclusive, non-assignable, royalty-free licence to use the provider’s logo (including any registered or unregistered trademarks relating thereto) as set out above and for no other purpose.

To upload the logo under the ‘Personalisation’ tab on the provider portal select the image to upload. This needs to be in either .jpeg or .png format and no bigger than 200kb.

More guidance on the type of logo is available in the logo specification document. We would also recommend speaking to your internal marketing/communications team for support on ensuring the relevant logo is added to the system.

The logo will appear as a ‘Preview’; if you are happy with this, select ‘Upload’. This needs to be done by the approval deadline for Cohort A for the logo to be added for the start of the survey. HESA will transfer the logo across to the other cohorts; however, it can be changed or deleted from the provider portal at any time. Any change made to a provider’s logo or deletion will take effect on the online survey immediately. It is the personalisation user’s responsibility to ensure that any logo of the provider uploaded to the provider portal reflects the current logo and branding guidelines of the provider.

If a logo is not available/not uploaded onto the provider portal, then the text of the provider’s name will be displayed in the online survey for that provider’s graduates.


Opt-in question banks are questions that may be asked in addition to the core question bank contained within the Graduate Outcomes survey. There are two types of opt-in question banks:

  • Statutory Opt-In Question Banks (required to be asked by one or more of HESA’s Statutory Customers)
  • Provider Opt-In Question Banks (asked at the option of the provider)

Opt-in questions selected are asked of the entire relevant population e.g. section M – newly qualified teachers would be asked of all those who had graduated from a teacher training course. HESA and the Graduate Outcomes steering group set the Opt-In Question banks. The terms of the Opt-In Question banks will be annually reviewed by HESA and the Graduate Outcomes steering group.

Under the ‘Personalisation’ tab on the Graduate Outcomes portal homepage, there is a section entitled ‘Opt in Question banks’. Providers can view the Statutory Opt-In Question Banks as well as selecting and viewing any Provider Opt-In Question Banks.

Please note that a maximum of three Opt-In Question banks can be selected. This includes both Statutory Opt-In Question Banks and Provider Opt-In Question Banks.

Statutory Opt-In Question Banks

Statutory Opt-In Question Banks will be pre-selected in the provider portal. Providers can’t amend which Statutory Opt-In Question Banks are selected and they will be greyed-out, as in the example below. Statutory Opt-In Question Banks will be selected by Statutory Customers by the end of September each year. Please note that the screen shot below is an example of the ‘Opt in Question Bank’ section of the Graduate Outcomes system and should not be taken as indicating the Opt-In Question banks that may have been selected by Statutory Customers.

Data from Statutory Opt-In Question Banks will be included within the final Graduate Outcomes data set and disseminated in the same manner as the core Graduate Outcomes survey questions.

Provider Opt-In Question Banks

Provider Opt-In Question Banks must be chosen by 26 October 2018 and once selected may not be changed for the relevant collection year. Providers will be charged for the Provider Opt-In Question Banks (see below).

An addendum to the HESA subscription agreement is being produced to cover the Provider Opt-In Question Banks and this will be accompanied by a separate guidance note. If the terms of the addendum are not agreed with the provider on or before 9 November 2018, only the core Graduate Outcomes survey questions and Statutory Opt-In Question Banks will be asked of the Provider’s graduates during Graduate Outcomes C17071.

Providers can opt in to Provider Opt-In Question Banks by selecting the ‘Opt in’ toggle next to the relevant provider question bank and clicking ‘Save details’ at the bottom of the page. Please note that the screen shot below is an example of the ‘Opt in Question Bank’ section of the Graduate Outcomes system and does not indicate the Opt-In Question Banks that can be selected by Providers.

Whilst it is at the discretion of graduates to respond to the Graduate Outcomes survey as a whole, where the provider selects to ask Provider Opt-In Question Banks there will be a clear demarcation in the survey that these questions do not form part of the core Graduate Outcomes survey and are optional for a graduate to complete.

As stated above, there is a charge for Opt-In Question banks that are added to the Graduate Outcomes survey. Further information about the costs for these banks can be seen here. When Opt-In Question banks are selected a message similar to that below will be displayed in the provider portal:

Data from the Provider Opt-In Question Banks are included within the final Graduate Outcomes data sets provided to Statutory Customers and depending on the set publication threshold may be used to publish statistical information. Providers will also receive data sets from these Provider Opt-In Question Banks.

Please note that any Provider Opt-In Question Bank(s) selected will be required to be confirmed by your Accountable Officer/Head of Provider in an Addendum to the HESA Subscription Agreement and returned to HESA by 9 November 2018.

Further information

For further information on the contents of each optional question bank please refer to the Graduate Outcomes survey.

Provider own questions are out of scope for year 1 of Graduate Outcomes (C17071) as previously communicated.


Providers have the option to add their careers service URL at the end of the Graduate Outcomes online survey so it can be displayed to graduates. This careers section will only show if you choose to upload a URL.

To upload a careers service URL, go to the ‘Personalisation’ tab on the Graduate Outcomes portal home page and then ‘Careers link’. You can then enter the URL into the box and click the Save details button.

Please make sure that the exact web address is entered and format the URL beginning http:// or https://. Please note that HESA will not be undertaking any validity checks of the URL and providers need to ensure that any URL uploaded is accurate and in operation.


We will also be creating a new role Graduate Outcomes Survey Dashboard User. The results of the Graduate Outcomes survey may only be viewed and downloaded within the Graduate Outcomes portal by users holding this role within the HESA Identity System.

There will be more information on this role and this section of the provider portal in due course – it is currently under development. The main function of this role will be to oversee how the surveying is going for your provider (e.g. response rates) as well as being able to download an overview of the results at the end of each cohort and Standard Industrial Classification (SIC) and Standard Occupation Classification (SOC) data.


If you have any queries in relation to the Graduate Outcomes survey, please contact the Liaison team via email on [email protected] or call on +44 (0) 1242 211 144.

You can also join the Graduate Outcomes JISCMail group for updates about the Graduate Outcomes survey and to join in any discussions about it: [email protected]

Need help?

Contact Liaison by email or on 01242 211144.