Most people used to find filling out forms a painstaking task. But this was before the advent of app-based forms that allow you to conveniently fill out the required details.

As the use of smartphones continues to pervade society, the definitions of “work” and “office” have taken new meanings. People now work on the go from anywhere in the word. As such, most of the communication is virtual. Forms apps have responded to this revolution of work and the workplace by providing electronic platforms for data transmission.

The convenience and ease of filling out an online application-based form can be demonstrated in the immediacy of response.

Besides the ease of use of forms apps, there are other features that make this mode of collecting data more effective than the traditional paper-based forms.

1. Rich Data Collection

Forms apps recognize that today’s data collection is complex. Simple answers such as “yes” and “no” are no longer satisfactory, and neither are text-only answers. Today’s responses require the ability to attach videos, photos, audio, among other rich data types.

For example, an online application for a job may require you to attach your most recent passport photo, a pdf copy of your CV or resume, a short video sample of a past project, and other forms of rich data. Online forms apps provide this flexibility and make it possible for companies and individuals to harvest as much information as possible. This, in turn, helps them in making informed decisions long before physically meeting the applicant.

2. Cloud Connectivity

Forms apps can be connected to cloud-based storage systems to allow for easier collection and collation of data. For instance, a field employee can gather data in the field and key it into a forms app, which is then uploaded to a cloud server after hitting the send button.

The forms app can actually be hosted on the cloud server from where a field employee can access it. Once the field employee submits the data, it is sent automatically to all relevant recipients, who can, in turn, use it to make requisite decisions and take appropriate actions.

3. Versatility

Forms apps allow you to gather different kinds of information for different purposes. Two people could use the same form but end up with different outcomes. For instance, depending on whether a forms app user answers “yes” or “no” to a question, the next link may take them to two completely different places with a contrasting set of questions. After hitting “submit,” the information gathered may end up in two different departments and may trigger two contrasting responses.

4. Customizable Forms

A forms app can be customized for a variety of functions and purposes. The customizable features enable users to get the information they want and need to take the correct actions and make the most informed decisions. The form should be as comprehensive as possible while at the same time allowing for easy navigation.

5. Integration and Instant Notifications

Once you have filled out an app-based form, hitting “submit” triggers a number of integrated actions. The gathered data is sent to multiple recipients at the same time. Once it arrives at the other end, an auto-reply is triggered to indicate the receipt of the data besides giving you more information on next steps. The recipients are also notified on their smartphones or desktops that they have received a message. Appropriate action is then taken.

6. Functional Dashboards

This feature allows easy navigation and displays actionable data in formats that are easy to understand. The display should be functional to allow users direct access to crucial actionable information without having to click through layers of links.

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