What is an eForm?
Forms are an essential part of the recording and storing of information, but old paper forms are inefficient and easily damaged. That’s why eForms have become essential to modern industry.
An eForm is an online document that takes the place of old-school paper forms. The online form presents fields for the reader to fill out just like a traditional form but without the limitations of physical documents.
All the reader needs to do is type their information and click to submit the form to the right person. It’s an immediate, fully functional way of collecting information that uses the benefits of the digital age in your favor.
There’s a little more to online forms than that, of course.
How do eForms work?
eForms harness the internet to make data capture simpler than ever. Electronic forms are created and hosted at a central location, and then links to these forms can be sent to anyone who needs them. Instead of needing to be mailed or returned in person, eForms collect data instantly, trimming the time wasted in many industries.
Good eForms work by allowing organizations to generate and personalize documents to meet their needs. Once a general form has been created, the organization can then send out unique links to different people so that every response is tracked individually.
When a specific link is clicked and the recipient submits their completed form, the system captures their response and connects it to any other information they have provided.
There’s no need for manual data entry and no risk of typos or misfiling. Automated eForms allow your entire data collection system to work without constant oversight or corrections.
The benefits of using eForms
Replacing paper forms with eForms comes with a number of benefits, including:
- Saving time: The most fundamental element of an eForm is that it can be sent and received instantly. There’s no need to mail forms or travel to pick up a paper document. The recipient of the form gets it in seconds, and responses are logged as soon as the form is marked complete.
- Encouraging responses: The time and effort it takes to get and submit a paper form can reduce the number of responses you receive. If your organization uses forms for applications or to receive feedback, a low number of responses is a problem. When forms are easy to fill out and turn in, you’ll get more responses and better data collection.
- Preventing mistakes: Human error is impossible to avoid if your organization relies on transcribing paper forms into a database. Using eForms removes the possibility of mistakes. Messy handwriting and typos are no longer a problem; you get exactly what your form filler gives you. Best of all, eForms are immediately filed and sorted upon submission, so there is no risk of lost or misfiled documents.
- Simplifying analytics: One of the primary goals of data collection is the ability to learn from that information. When all your form responses are automatically collected into a single database, you can perform analytics with ease.
How do eForms help in the industries?
There are hundreds of opportunities to use eForms in most industries. Here are six of the most common industries in which eForms can make a difference along with reasons why they’re so useful.
The educational field has many moving parts. As students move through a school system, administrators need to track their progress, monitor registration, and fee collection, and obtain and consent forms for a variety of activities.
Using a powerful eForm building tool like PandaDoc Forms can help education administrators keep track of every student and avoid anyone falling through the cracks.
- eForms simplify the student registration process, so students can enroll in classes easily before they move to the area.
- Teacher contract renewals can be streamlined with the online form submission, keeping contracts up to date even during summer break.
- Parent-teacher conferences and other feedback opportunities can happen more often with electronic forms.
- Collecting permission slips can be as simple as sending out forms with an electronic signature field a few days before an event.
- Administrators can easily track and collect fees for events, sports, and other extracurriculars without needing to collect papers.
Organizations with large workforces need to invest in their human resources departments. Tracking employees and understanding their needs can help keep both morale and productivity high.
The right eForm builder, like PandaDoc, can help HR professionals stay on top of the needs of their workforce and prevent problems or conflicts before they occur.
- PandaDoc offers tools that make CV collection and selection more efficient than ever. Using an eForm submission can help HR professionals find the right person for the job with a centralized database.
- As the number of employees in an organization grows, handling requests for leave and vacation requires an organized approach. eForms can help you consolidate all time-off requests in a central location so you can assign vacation fairly.
The healthcare field is busier than ever. Any tool that makes it simpler and safer for healthcare workers to do their jobs is a vital improvement.
Using eForms helps protect healthcare workers by reducing the amount of in-person contact necessary.
- Busy patients can use eForms to request appointments without needing to call the office, saving everyone time.
- Potential new patients can fill out an online client questionnaire before their appointment. That allows the healthcare professional they’re visiting to read about their needs in advance.
- Electronic forms can automate the COVID-19 screening process by recording patient symptoms before their visit.
- Patients with multiple providers can get better care when their healthcare team can quickly and easily share information via online forms.
- Online data collection from eForms makes it simple to store and manage sensitive information and look for patterns in reported symptoms.
Non-profit organizations (NPOs) are held to high standards for reporting and licensing purposes. It’s crucial for these types of organizations to keep track of data effectively to remain in operation.
Centralized databases and simple data collection through PandaDoc help NPOs to stay current in their reporting and keep their non-profit status.
- Bringing in new volunteers becomes simple when signing up for a volunteering slot is a two-minute eForm process.
- Your NPO can organize events quickly by using eForms to trim the time required to make reservations and schedule speakers.
- Removing the barrier of paper forms makes fundraising and donation collection easy for donors and NPOs alike.
Marketing firms need to track a variety of different metrics. Collecting data on how different campaigns are performing allows marketing professionals to learn from past campaigns and improve their future results.
Centralized databases and instant data collection are revolutionizing how marketing outcomes can be analyzed.
- Email lists are the lifeblood of many marketing campaigns. A well-designed eForm can dramatically increase the number of emails a given campaign collects.
- Marketing campaigns need to make it easy for potential customers to contact the company. By implementing eForms to collect leads and signups, marketing professionals offer leads a quick way to ask questions or connect to the sales team.
- Tracking the different elements of a sales funnel helps marketing professionals find weak spots and improve their workflow. eForms can help them track any downloadable content at the top of the funnel.
Sales are the lifeblood of most businesses. Tracking potential leads and allowing customers to approach the sales team directly can increase sales numbers without increasing the workload.
Using a robust eForm builder like PandaDoc can make any sales team more effective at developing leads and closing deals by removing busy work from their focus.
- Implementing an online signup form on the company website offers interested prospects a way to connect with the sales team without having to make a phone call, removing a barrier to connection.
- Sales departments with self-service options can use eForms and automation to close deals without needing to spend time on it themselves.
- High-quality eForm platforms like PandaDoc offer eSignature functionality and payment collection, so deals can be closed entirely online.
Start growing more efficient today with PandaDoc Forms
Online forms are an effective method of collecting information without the drawbacks and hassles of paper documents. Instant submission and centralized data collection make it easier than ever to keep track of important information.
Industries from education to marketing to NPOs can all improve their effectiveness by reducing their reliance on paper forms.
That’s why so many companies choose to work with the industry leader in form building, PandaDoc.
With robust form creation tools, a secure platform, and easy-to-use eSignature and payment options, PandaDoc has everything your organization needs to drop paper forms entirely.
Whether your organization wants to close more deals or just simplify your workflow, PandaDoc can help.
Sign up for your PandaDoc 14-day free trial to explore how PandaDoc can help your company go paperless today.