Posted in Forms

How to Save Data from an HTML Form to a Database

Forms serve a vital purpose in enabling businesses to quickly and efficiently gather and process information, both internally and in communication with customers. Dynamic forms take this convenience a step further by applying business logic and executing various actions depending on the content of the forms.

For your business to get the most out of dynamic forms, you’ll want to integrate it with your SQL database to enable information to be saved and updated automatically on an ongoing basis. Too many businesses are still wasting too many precious human hours updating databases manually, inputting the information captured by forms by hand. 

Madness. 

Imagine you’re onboarding a new customer and helping them to fill out their first order form. Together, you fill out all the relevant fields and hit the “submit” button. 

But what happens next? How do you get your data from the forms to the database containing all your order information?

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Posted in Database

Populating an HTML Form from a SQL Database: Using frevvo’s Database Connector

Most of your company’s important data likely lives in a SQL database.

Practically every organization has at least one SQL database and often many of them. 

But, here’s the rub: Most of your company has no idea what SQL even means, let alone how to get the information they need out of the database. So, that means that your IT team spends an enormous amount of time either manually running queries and generating reports or building one-off applications and HTML forms for every department under the sun to get the data they need.

It’s not a good use of time.

What you need is a form builder with configurable SQL database integration that can help you stand up solutions quickly. Rather than rolling your own applications, you can use frevvo to build custom forms, configure advanced workflows, integrate data from a MySQL database, and ship a solution—in about an hour. 

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Posted in Forms, Workflows

Create Dynamic Forms: The No-Code Guide to Smarter Data Collection

Dynamic forms are the lifeblood of most automated business processes. 

From HR paperwork to automating accounting tasks, most of the common ways that our customers use frevvo to save time and money in their business rely on smart forms that are able to do more than just collect text in a box, but perform actions based on those specific inputs. 

This functionality allows businesses to create forms that perform calculations, automatically fill in  information, or customize workflows based on the user’s inputs.

While most users would likely love this functionality, few have the resources at their disposal to achieve a truly seamless experience.

Instead, most businesses capture inputs through forms where users have to type data and read instructions and then still manually process those inputs with human time and energy. Why? Because building dynamic forms can be an enormous expense and investment that many businesses can’t make. 

For most companies, rolling your own dynamic forms and creating custom workflows can drain hundreds of hours of IT time and other resources cost thousands of dollars to implement.

This is why frevvo includes a Visual Rule Builder (VRB) to allow business users to create dynamic forms without coding. Using the VRB engine, non-technical users can easily define custom rules and logic that control how a form functions while it’s being completed, once it’s been submitted, and when it’s being processed. 

All of the custom functionality that would require manual coding and huge investment to build and maintain can be created with just a few clicks.

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Posted in Forms, HowTo, Mobile, Usability

Responsive Forms: The Tactical Guide for Modern, Growing Organizations

The modern workforce is picking up their mobile devices and not putting them down. The BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) trend has skyrocketed in the last decade with nearly 90% of employees connecting to company networks via their mobile devices 

As this trend continues, your customers and employees expect to leverage portability and access forms and business services from anywhere and from any device. This gives customers the flexibility to interact with you anywhere and from any device. It also gives employees the freedom to keep projects moving without being chained to their desktop computers.

The end result? Your organization also saves time and resources as projects get done faster and more efficiently — and provides a better customer experience.  

There is a caveat, though.

Increased efficiency is only possible if people use your mobile apps. Poorly-designed, non-responsive forms keep them from fully enjoying and embracing the mobile experience. And for growing organizations, a frustrating mobile experience creates an unproductive work environment and employee disdain for difficult mobile applications. 

The good news is that virtually any form or workflow can be optimized for mobile. Employee onboarding, contracts and quotes, proposals, expense forms, and more—all from any device, and from any location. 

Let’s go over the characteristics of mobile-optimized forms, what they are and how to implement them into your employee’s workflow. 

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Posted in Forms

Automated Form Processing: A Tactical Guide to Dealing with Forms on the Fly

Efficiency is key for high-performing businesses. Inconvenient as they are, forms, from purchase orders to travel requests, are unavoidable and abundant. Forms typically require approvals where one or more supervisors may comment and sign, and processing where the completed data fields are entered into an electronic database. This can be done manually or automatically. 

Automated form processing is much more efficient and has significant advantages over manual processing. Form automation software streamlines tasks, saving staff time and reducing errors. Learn the benefits of automated form processing, how it works, and the best form automation software for your business.

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Posted in Mobile, Usability

10 best practices for mobile form design

if_seo_web-46_1046182.pngUX Matters had this interesting article on mobile form design. At frevvo, we’ve created thousands of forms and workflows for mobile devicesand we’ve learned a lot along the way. One thing is absolutely true:

“As technology continues to go through metamorphoses and our understanding of users’ needs becomes more refined, good mobile form design is constantly evolving.”
– Quoted from above article

Getting your forms to be genuinely usable on mobile devices is hard but can have big benefits. Fortunately, with frevvo, you don’t have to worry too much about this. Let’s take a look at a few things mentioned in the above excellent article:

1. Use a single input field where possible

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Posted in Approval Process, Forms, Green Schools, k-12, Paperless Schools, Workflows

[Infographic] K-12 Process Automation

infographic_wireframe_frevvo_jan2016_3In previous posts, we’ve described how some of our K-12 school customers are using frevvo to automate routine processes and improve efficiency and services to students and staff. EUSD (Escondido Union School District) has been so successful at this – they’ve automated 8 approval workflows including Absence Records, Mileage Reimbursement, and Budget Transfers in the first three months – that they were even able to decommission SharePoint/InfoPath thanks to frevvo.
The fact is, schools are drowning in paper. Student work, parent & staff communications, travel reimbursements and many other processes are paper-based and require, emailing, printing and scanning.
Yet, for many schools, going paperless means 1:1 education, e-textbooks and expensive $500 gadgets for each student. It’s a fantastic goal undoubtedly but there’s also plenty of much lower-hanging fruit that’s ripe for automation and saving paper, time and money.
Check out this new infographic on the value/benefits of automating day-to-day K-12 workflows.
Every parent is familiar with consent forms for athletics, directory listing, emergency contact etc. (Miami-Dade County, Los Angeles USD). Typically, these require a parent/guardian to sign the form and they’re sent home on paper or printed out at home.
Internal approval workflows like travel reimbursement, field trip approval etc. (e.g. see New Haven USD, Cabrillo USD) are also commonplace. Typically, these are routed to a supervisor for approval i.e. to sign the form. The paper-based process is simply inefficient.
It’s 2016! There’s simply no excuse for outdated, manual systems that cause delays, result in unhappy students and staff and wasted time and money.
frevvo already has pre-built forms and workflows that can be customized in next to no time and deployed online. They can all be signed online, routed to the proper person electronically, used on mobile devices, delivered in multiple languages, generate PDFs, work with Google Apps for Education and a whole host of advanced capabilities. With affordable, cloud-based workflow products for K-12 process automation, there’s no need to deal with printing PDFs for signatures, correcting Excel-based time sheets, or tracking down approvals in email.
Learn more by visiting our website. Explore some of the examples, read customer success stories and contact us for more details.

Posted in Forms

Electronic wet signatures

frevvo’s digital signature software already supports electronic signatures so any authenticated user can digitally sign a section, lock it down and prevent tampering with the data. That’s an incredibly powerful feature but many customers still want the ability to add a wet signature via signature pads like Topaz devices, touchscreen computers and mobile devices. We’re working on that and expect that it’ll be available in the next release.
As usual with frevvo, we’ll make sure this is extremely easy to use. How will it work? You’ll be able to drag and drop a new Signature control from the palette anywhere into the form. You can make it required, add a tool tip, style it etc. like any other control. To sign, simply click or touch a signature control, and frevvo will present an entry dialog. Sign using a touchscreen, track pad, stylus or just using your mouse.

Signature Entry Dialog
Signature Entry Dialog

Click Done and the signature is displayed in the form scaled down into the signature control as shown below.

Signed Form
Signed Form

Easy as that. This signature functionality will require no special hardware; all you need is a smartphone or a computer with a relatively modern browser that supports HTML5. Coming soon …