Creating Forms in SharePoint — Best Practices

Creating forms in SharePoint is gradually becoming a business necessity. All businesses need forms for applications, evaluations and other processes. There are plenty of forms available to date and most of them are left unused due to several factors. These include obsolete information, especially when the business is upgrading or the business changes it processes. Other reasons include addition of more information, upgrading of forms to soft copies and many more. Good thing, there is a way to conveniently customize a form without having to waste away the existing ones – and this is by using SharePoint.

The Designer

While there are default forms available on SharePoint, it is still best to customize one for a certain business. The best way to do this is to use a default form and use the Designer to create forms in SharePoint using .aspx page. With the Designer, anyone can add graphics or text, change the layout, and edit criteria to make the form as useful as possible. The Designer can be downloaded without a cost at Microsoft.

The easiest way to create forms using the Designer is by inserting a form using ribbon. To do this, simply open the ‘SharePoint Designer’ and click the ‘Site Pages’ located in the ‘Navigation’ panel. Choose a page where you want to add the form. Then, go to the ‘Page’ tab and click the ‘Edit’ option. A box will appear on the window showing either the div and form box. Click the inside of the box and choose three options to create a form. These are the new item, edit item and display item. After the selection, the forms are now added and ready to be used.

The InfoPath

The InfoPath is another add-on tool on SharePoint. It is an editing tool that does not require any coding, or only needs a few when the need arises. This is a great way to create complex forms that need to be accessible to different sources. This allows multiple views so all concerned individuals can work on it at the same time. In order to successfully download the InfoPath, Forms Services should be installed in the system. It may also require system upgrade, especially when the Standard edition or WSS is used.

InfoPath is used to add a view by simply clicking the ‘Page Design’ and selecting the ‘New View,’ then opening the ‘View Properties.’ A pop-up window will show and the desired settings can now be added. InfoPath also can delete a view by clicking on the ‘Page Design’ and choosing ‘Delete.’ Other options include changing the default view, renaming a view, adding buttons for switching views, and displaying a view using a load rule. All these are done by means of human-friendly interface.

Other useful tools are Access 2010, Microsoft Excel as well as other third party vendors. SharePoint truly is a smart business innovation. With this program, businesses can easily finish a business process in a matter of minutes. That is why it is important to know the basics of creating forms in SharePoint in order to take advantage of its features.

sharepoint banner

Marissa Hart is the Lead Author & Editor ShareMe. ShareMe is a blog focused on SharePoint Online. SharePoint Online delivers the powerful features of SharePoint without the associated overhead of managing the infrastructure.