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Building an Advanced Web Form

A video short course...

A Guide to Building an Advanced Web Form

Before reading this article you should read Web Forms Overview, Accessing the Form Editor, Building a Basic Web Form, Connecting Forms to Database Actions and Displaying and Using Web Form.

Building a web form can get complex rather quickly. It is outside the scope of Elexio help articles, video courses or a support case to cover all possible form building scenarios. We recommend allowing plenty of time, testing, and trial/error, as you work with web forms.

An advanced web form may…

  • Use multiple containers (Both section and person)
  • Have containers within containers
  • Offer form users the option of adding a person to a form (for example one form is completed both children in a family)
  • Have required fields
  • Use text prompts to encourage form users to complete the form accurately
  • Connect to multiple database actions
  • Honor process automation rules from the Elexio Database

This article is meant to review possible scenarios rather than provided a step by step process for building an advanced web form.

Multiple Containers - Containers are organizational devices that come in two types (Person and Section). Person containers are by far the most commonly used. Your form will not connect to people in your Elexio Database unless you use a person container. Containers can exist within other containers. As you experiment with containers in forms you will see that the form builder will maintain a visual indention hierarchy of containers (and controls for that matter) within other containers.

Adding a Person –This option will allow the form to be completed for multiple people, perhaps a head of household and a spouse, then submitted just once for both people by clicking the Submit button at the bottom of the page.
The Add Person option is associated with the person container. Navigate to your person container, click the button marked Edit

Then engage the Add Person option.

You can change the change the display text which by default says "Add." (i.e. It could be changed to "Add person.").

When a form is completed and a user chooses the Add a Person option, a duplicate version of the form appears below the original form. If you prefer to have the additional form be presented in a side by side presentation on separate pages, when you navigate to your control and make the adjustment to allow for an Add Person button in the first place, if you select the Page Break option, that will set your additional forms to appear side by side, rather than stacked on top of one another. It's recommended that you experiment with page breaks to find the most pleasing form option for your preferences.

Required Fields – When editing any control (i.e. a choose one question control or email address control) you can choose to make this a required field by engaging the required check box.

Placeholder Text – Placeholder text appears as slightly grayed text in a question control. For example since email address is such an important field in the Elexio Database, placeholder text could be added that prompts form users fill out the form and use that same login email address that they use for those other Elexio products (Portal and Mobile).

Multiple Actions – Adding multiple actions is simply a continuation of what was learned in Connecting Forms to Database Actions. Follow the same process described in that article/course just add more than one.

NOTE: Form actions are not dependent on each other (conditional logic). In other words, you cannot trigger an action based on some formula (i.e. if an answer is yes in this question and no in a separate question then perform the action).

NOTE 2:  If your events have an associated cost (even if just an add-on item), you must use a separate registration form for each event.

Process Automation – When adding actions a check box labeled “Process Automation” is available. If you select the Process Automation option this will enforce any rules you have in your Elexio database. For example, typically a rule exists in the Elexio Database that anyone identified as a ministry team leader or follow up coordinator will be notified if a person is marked with an involvement level “interested” for that ministry team on the people involvement tab. If the form you have created triggers an action that marks someone in this way and the process automation box is checked then the rule will be honored. If the box is not checked no notification will be sent those leaders.

As previously noted, the possibilities for adding bells and whistles to web forms are practically endless. There's no substitute for experimentation. You are encouraged to use Elexio's Q & A sessions to investigate your options.

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