Availability: Business* and Enterprise* plans
* 250 responses (generated documents) per year per account are included. You can purchase additional volume at $2 per document.
Warning:No more than 50 documents in 5 minutes/300 documents in one hour can be generated from one form.
In this article, we’ll discuss what goes into creating a form, including assigning roles and building the form itself.
Watch a short video overview of forms.
Before you create a form, make sure this functionality is turned on for your workspace in the Marketplace.
Log in to your PandaDoc account. Then, follow this link and select Workspaces, then check the box next to each workspace name and Save changes. That’s all it takes!
Note:Only the account owner can enable features in the Marketplace.
Refresh the page and you should be able to see the Forms section under Documents app on the left-hand panel.
Start your form
First, navigate to Forms along the left panel; then, click the green +Form button near the top-left corner of the screen. You may now select a template from your existing templates. If you’d like to create a form from scratch, you'll need to either create a template or upload your file as a template. Once you've done this, you can then create a form from this template.
If you have already prepared your template, open it, select the vertical ellipsis (three dots) at the top right, then select Create form from template.
Add recipients/roles to your form
The very first thing to do once you open your new form is specify the primary recipient and (if necessary) secondary recipient.
- A primary recipient is the person who must initiate the signing process. A form can have only one primary recipient. You must include the primary recipient role on your form.
- A secondary recipient is a co-signer of the form. They do not initiate the signing process and are usually appointed by the primary recipient. The secondary recipient is an optional role.
For example, let’s say you’ve created a form for time-off requests. The primary recipient here will be the employee who requests time off, while the secondary recipient will be the manager who needs to countersign the request so it can be processed by a human resources (HR) representative. The primary recipient (employee) will enter the name and email address of the secondary recipient (manager) before signing the form to ensure that the manager receives the form for signature.
If the template from which you created the form contains roles, they will be imported into your form. The first role listed in the template will become the primary recipient in the form.
Note:Role names will be displayed to anyone who fills out your form.
Follow this link to learn how to create an employee timesheet using forms.
If you have multiple secondary recipients, you can set a signing order for them. This feature ensures that once the form is signed by the primary recipient, it will be sent to the first secondary recipient in the signing order list. And once this person signs, the form will be sent to the next recipient in line.
Let’s go back to our example using time-off requests. The HR representative should only receive the form once it’s been signed by both the employee and the employee’s manager. In this case, you’ve set the employee as the primary recipient, while the manager and HR representative are secondary recipients.
You can then turn on the signing order to ensure the manager role is listed first. When the employee fills out the form and signs it, the document will be sent to the manager. Once the manager signs the document, only then will it be sent to the HR representative.
Pre-assign a person to a role
If a specific person needs to sign all documents generated from your form, you can pre-assign them to a specific form role. Simply click on the role name and enter the email address of the signer under Pre-assign a person.
You cannot pre-assign someone to the primary recipient role.
Here’s a helpful example that, again, uses time-off requests. It’s likely that the same HR representative would process all time-off requests, so you can pre-assign this person to the HR role. When the employee fills out the time-off request form, they only need to specify their manager. The HR person will automatically receive the form because they’ve been pre-assigned to a specific role.
Use role variables to add a signer’s contact information
Role variables are an easy way to automatically populate a signer’s contact information on your form. A role variable will always include the role name at the start, and it will be listed under the role in the variables section.
Note:Custom variables cannot be used on form.
Click on a variable to copy and add it to your form. To add a variable on a piece of uploaded content, first add a text block, then the variable.
When the signer opens the form, they’ll enter their required contact information — which will then automatically be filled out in the variables on the form.
Set up auto-numbering in your form
Auto-numbering allows you to set a sequence and number to every new document created from your form.
Apply auto-numbering in templates and forms
To apply auto-numbering to your form, start by adding a sequence. Select your profile image at the lower left corner to access Settings, then select Workspace defaults and scroll to Document auto-numbering. Select Add Sequence to add a new sequence and start number. When finished, select Add.
Note:A sequence can have up to 32 characters, with a starting number up to 9 digits.
Once you’ve set up your sequence, you can apply it either in the template you’ll use or directly in your form. Forms created from a template with a sequence will inherit that sequence.
To apply a sequence to your template, select the context menu in the top right, then Template details from the dropdown. Scroll down to Template sequence, then select the gear icon. Select the sequence you've just created, or create a new one here. Finally, select Apply.
Note:All documents created from this template will inherit this sequence and a corresponding number.
To apply a sequence to your form, select the context menu in the top right, then Document sequence.
Use the sequence variable to populate the sequence number
Once you’ve configured the above, you can add a sequence variable to your template or form. This will auto-populate the number in each document created from the template or form.
To apply a sequence variable, open a template or form, then go to the Variables tab. Scroll down to the bottom. Under System, copy [Document.SeqNumber] and paste it into a block in your template or form.
The sequence variable will be auto-populated once your form is published and recipients view it.
Build your form
When you create a form from an existing template, the template content is conveniently imported into your new form. Better yet, you can further customize your form by adding content blocks and fields, as you normally do with templates.
Add a Collect files field to allow your recipients to easily upload files in your form.
You can also add content from your Content library. But you cannot save form's pages and content blocks to your Content library.
And finally, you can even modify the design of your form.
Add a title to Field ID
To easily find and work with the data your recipients include, you can add a title to the Field ID to any field in your form.
The value added to the Field ID can be found in the column header of the downloaded CSV file with form responses. In the column header, the value is added after the role and field type in this format: Role_Name.Field_Type.Field_ID_value.
To add a value to a Field ID, select a field in your template or form, then select Properties on the field’s floating panel. Finally, enter a title under Field ID on the right.
Note:You can add Field ID values in the form or template you’ll use to create your form.
Publish/unpublish your form
Once you’re ready to collect signatures with your new form, click Get code. You can then either copy the code to add the form to your website, or get a direct link to the form.
Next, once you’re ready to accept signatures through your form, click Publish. This will make the form available for others to fill out. If you add the form to your website without publishing it, others will be unable to fill it out.
To make edits to your form, you’ll need to first unpublish it. When a form is disabled/ unpublished, this is what your customer will see (provided you haven’t removed the code from your website).
Once you’ve finished editing it, simply click Publish. No need to generate a new code — it will remain the same.
View and manage your form
You can view your form by going to Forms in the Documents app.
There are three levels of status your form can be in: Draft, Active, Disabled.
Draft: The form has been created, but is yet to be published.
Active: The form has been created and published. (Note that this doesn’t mean it’s been added to your website — but it can be filled out.)
Disabled: The form has been unpublished and can no longer be filled out.
To delete, duplicate, rename, or download a CSV with responses of a form, click on the vertical ellipses to the right of the form name, then select an action from the dropdown menu.
You can also delete or duplicate multiple forms at once. Simply check as many boxes as you wish to the left of any form name, then select an action in the upper-right corner.
Our next article looks more closely at publishing and editing forms. Read on if you’d like to learn more!