Take it from the experts: mobile forms with workflows are always more complex than you initially think they’re going to be.
Sure, a form may seem like a single entity, but forms are only as good as the data they collect. All that information needs to go somewhere for it to be useful, and it takes a lot of time and understanding to make sure the right people see the results, the right tasks are generated, and the appropriate follow-up forms are deployed. A single form suddenly becomes a multi-step journey for your information, and creating all those steps requires a thoughtful approach. Anyone who tells you that creating the complex workflow forms you need is a simple task either doesn’t know what they’re talking about, or isn’t committed to meeting your exact workflow needs.
Creating real workflow within mobile forms that actually help your business process is like following the White Rabbit down into Wonderland: you never know where you’re going to end up. A true expert will follow the data, taking time to learn about where information needs to go once it’s collected and adding automation where it makes the most sense.
Say an employee uses an inspection app to find a problem. Instead of having to write a report and manually forward the issue on to the correct people, a well-developed workflow can automatically perform that action once the form is completed. The inspector is able to continue focusing on his duties rather than wasting time on a low-value task like forwarding the information, and the responsible parties are able to correct the issue as quickly as possible. When implemented properly, workflow forms eliminate bottlenecks and the manual processes that cause delays and miscommunications.
Thoughtful workflows are especially important where offline data entry is concerned. If done correctly, information collected offline will sync to your database and be forwarded to the right people, triggering the correct follow-up tasks and alerts along the way. A badly implemented workflow, however, can be the cause of double data entry, lost form submissions, and confusing sets of information that require someone to check for inaccuracies. For a tool that’s supported to make work easier, having to verify the data is gathers really defeats the purpose.
A true workflow solution will prevent time from being wasted on low-value tasks, ensure that no employees are idle while others are overloaded with work, and eliminate process blind spots with efficiency and execution tracking. To get the workflow forms you really need, you need to work with an experienced team that understands the unique needs of enterprise organizations and how to solve their business process challenges.