Request Forms

In this article we will build, implement, and understand Request Forms.

Pam English avatar
Written by Pam English
Updated over a week ago

What are Request Forms?

Request Forms are supplemental forms you can use in your projects to gather information from your submitters. Similar to Additional Forms, Request Forms are built using the drag-and-drop form builder and have no restrictions on the types of form fields you can use. What separates Request Forms from Additional Forms is how they are deployed.

Submitters do not need to use a Request Form. Instead, the submitter controls if and when they use the Request Form. Because of this flexibility, Request Forms can be used in several scenarios:

  • Your organization is accepting submissions from a project with multiple steps and requirements from the submitters. You can create a Request Form that lets the submitters ask for a deadline extension.

  • As a grantmaker, you need your submitters to submit an expense

    reimbursement report. Because not every submitter will need to submit an expense report, you can use a Request Form.

  • Some grant organizations have long-running requirements for submitters to qualify for a grant. A Request Form is created that lets the submitter file a monthly report on their progress.

Key Concept:

The submitter sends a request to the organization using a Request Form. The organization then approves or rejects the request.

How to create a Request Form

Now that you know what a Request form is, we will take you through the creation and implementation of a Request Form, from start to finish.

In this example, we will take the first scenario above and make a Deadline Extension Request Form. By the end of the walkthrough, you will have a completed request form that can be used with your project.

Step 1: Create a Project

If you already have a Project, you can skip this step and move on to Step 2. If not, set up your project and Initial Form using the Getting Started tutorial.

Step 2: Create the Request Form

Now that you have your Project, we are going to create a request form. Creating a request form uses the same workflow that you learned when creating an initial form, and uses the same drag-and-drop method. There aren't any restrictions on the form fields you can use in a Request Form.

Let's create a Deadline Extension Request Form.

  1. In the Forms view, select Request Forms on the left.

  2. Select New Form at the top of the form list. The Form Designer view will open.

  3. Name the New Form "Deadline Extension Request"

    • If your account has Collaboration enabled and you want submitters to collaborate on this form, check the Enable Collaboration box.

  4. Drag a Short Answer field to the canvas.

    • Name the Short Answer field "Project Name".

  5. Drag a Date Field to the canvas.

    • Name the Date Field "Original Completion Date".

  6. Repeat step 5.

    • Name this field "New Completion Date Requested".

  7. Drag a Long Answer field to the canvas.

    • Name it "Reason for Change".

  8. Save the Form.

After completing these steps, you have a form that lets a user input the Project they are working on and informs the organization of any requested changes to their deadline.

Step 3: Add the Request Form to the Project

Once you have created the Request Form, you will need to add it to the project. Once the Request Form is integrated with the Project, you can set the criteria that will make the Request Form accessible to a submitter.

  1. Navigate to the Projects Page by clicking the Projects link.

  2. Select the Project you want to add a Request Form to by clicking the project title.

  3. In the Edit Project view, select the Forms tab.

  4. In the Request Form section, select the Deadline Extension Request from the drop-down menu.

    • You can see a preview of the selected Request Form by clicking the View button.

    • You can add multiple Request Forms by selecting Add Request Form, and remove them by selecting Remove Request Form.

  5. Set the Availablity Criteria to Submission Status Based.

    • Set the Status to Accepted.

    • For more information on Availability Criteria see the section below.

  6. Save the Project.

Your Request form is now live. In this case, the Deadline Extension Request form will appear to any submitters with an Accepted submission.

Note: You can have a maximum of 10 Request Forms active in a project.

Availability Criteria

Availability Criteria determine which submitters will be able to see and use a Request Form. Each Request Form in your project can have its own set of criteria. If the submitter does not meet the criteria you set, they will not be able to view, edit, or access the Request Form.

For example, a "Deadline Extension" Request Form might only be visible to submitters with Accepted submissions, while a "Monthly Report" Request Form might only be accessible during the last week of the month.

There are three main criteria that can be set. You can select one, multiple, or no Availability Criteria.

Timeline Based

If you select the Timeline Based criteria, the Request Form will only be available between the specified dates. This is useful for time-sensitive requests (such as monthly reports) and will apply to all submitters unless additional criteria are set.

Submission Status Based

Using a Submission Status Based criteria lets you limit the visibility of the Request Form to just those who have a submission with a certain status. Select that Status from the drop-down menu. Only submitters with a submission matching that status will see the Request Form. For more information on submission statuses, see When should I change the status of a submission.

Note: Currently, you can only select a single status for a Submission Status Based criteria.

Label Based

The Label Based criteria will limit the Request Form access to only those submissions with the associated label. For more information on Labels, see How can I label submissions.

Overlapping and Changing Criteria

If you choose to use Availability Criteria, please note that all criteria must apply to a submitter before they gain access to the Request Form. This is especially important if you use multiple criteria.

As a general rule, the more criteria apply to a Request Form, the fewer submitters will have access to it.

Additionally, if a submitter no longer meets the set criteria, they will lose access to the Request Form and any saved work in the Request Form.

Enable Collaboration

If your account has Collaboration enabled, submitters can collaborate on Request Forms.

Enable Collaboration on your form by checking the Enable Collaboration box as described in Step 2: Create the Request Form above. For more information on collaboration, see Collaboration for Submissions.

Manage Request Forms

Completed Request Forms can be viewed, edited, and have their status updated from the Submission Details view.

View a completed Request Form

  1. From the Submissions list view, click on the submission you want to view.

    • Alternatively, you can click on the clipboard icon. A list of the submitter's most recent forms will appear.

  2. You will be taken to the Submission Details page.

    • The Request Forms section shows all completed Request Forms, along with their current status.

  3. Select the Request Form you want to review. The Request Form Details view will expand, displaying the completed request form.

Request Form Actions

From the Request Form Details view, you can change the status of the request, enable editing on the request, or download the request form response to a PDF by selecting the Actions drop-down menu.

Change Status

Each Request Form has its own status independent of the parent submission's status. To set it, select the appropriate status from the Actions drop-down menu. When the applicant's status changes, you will be prompted to send an email to the Submitter, alerting them of the change in their status.

Open to Editing

You can allow a Submitter to change their answers on an already submitted Request Form with the Open Editing option. When you select the Open Editing option from the Actions menu, you will be prompted to send an email to the Submitter, alerting them of the change in their Request Form. The Request Form will then be editable by the submitter.

Download

By selecting Download from the Actions menu, you can download a .pdf copy of the completed Request Form.

The Manage Requests View

Once your submitters begin to fill out Request Forms, you can track, update, and manage all of your Request Forms from a single location.

Open the Manage Requests view

To access the Manage Requests view, follow these steps.

  1. From your Submittable page, select Forms from the top navigation bar.

  2. Select Request Forms from the options on the left.

  3. The Request Forms page will show a list of all Request Forms you have created. If any Request Forms have been submitted, you will see a Manage Requests link.

  4. Select the Manage Requests link for the form you want to manage. Note that each form has an independent Manage Requests page, and changes made on one form will not propagate to other, different forms.

Managing Request Forms

While on the Manage Request page, you will see a table of all of the requests that applicants have submitted. The table is organized into the following columns.

  • Project Name

    Shows the associated project with this request form, useful information if you are using one request form across multiple projects.

  • Submission Title

    Displays the submission title associated with the request form.

  • Submitter

    The name of the person filing the request form.

  • State

    The current state of the request forms. A request form is either Submitted or Editable. An Editable submission is a Request Form that can still be modified by the submitter.

  • Status

    The status of the request form. For more information on what the statuses mean, see Submission Status. You can sort the Status field by clicking the Ascending or Descending arrow next to the column header.

  • Date Submitted

    Displays the date the request form was submitted. You can sort the Date Submitted field by clicking the Ascending or Descending arrow next to the column header.

Selecting Forms

Click the box next to a specific request to select it, or click the box at the column header to select all request forms. Once a request form is selected, the following actions are enabled.

Send Message

Select Send Message to open the Messaging dialog. There you can select a template to send to the submitter to gather additional information or inform them of changes.

Take Actions

By selecting the Action drop-down menu, the following options are available.

  • Open Editing: Change the state of the request to open for editing, allowing the submitter to make changes to the request form.

  • Close Editing: Change the state of the request to Closed, preventing any further changes to the request form.

  • Download: Download a .pdf of the Request Form.

  • Change Status: Update the request to one of the following statuses.

    • Accept: The submission has been accepted.

    • Decline: The submission has been declined.

    • Complete: The submission has been processed and is no longer being considered.

    • In-Progress: The submission has been received and additionally handled in some way in a review process.

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