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Purchase order form

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Dustin_Good
6 - Interface Innovator
6 - Interface Innovator

As of right now the inventory department at my company relies on paper forms and it was recently requested that we digitize the form. I don’t need the form to actually place the order, I just need filled out forms to be sent to the inventory manager. However, as I dove into the process, I hit a wall. Is there a good way to convert the attached form into an airtable form?
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6 Replies 6

Hey Dustin, in short, nah not really I’m afraid.

You’ll probably want to look into other form software that lets you add tables into the forms like Jotform. Here’s a link to their documentation for the form table: Input Table's Multi Type Columns


In my experience, moving old workflows (or forms in this case) into Airtable rarely works well honestly, and if we could revamp how we’re working as well that would probably be super helpful

For example, if this purchase order form is filled up by people who have access to Airtable, what if they did the following instead?

  1. In a table called “Items”, they key in the Vendor, Item #, Description, Quantity, Date Needed, Date Received
  2. In a table called “Purchase Orders”, they create a single new record and key in the Date, Name, Department, Reference #
  3. They link the records created in step 1 to the “Purchase Order” record in step 2
  4. Once this is done, they mark a checkbox and we have an automation that will send your Inventory Manager an email with a table that includes all the data from step 1 and step 2

This is just an example, of course, and will be highly dependent on what your company’s workflows are like

Happy to brainstorm further!

ScottWorld
18 - Pluto
18 - Pluto

Airtable doesn't let you create forms like that. You would need to look at JotForm or Cognito Forms or Fillout to design a form like that, and then you can use Make to send the form submissions into Airtable.

As far as printing the purchase order, that is also something that Airtable doesn't allow.

Airtable doesn’t allow users to design forms or print forms that look like that, except when printing single-page documents from the Page Designer extension.

But nobody really uses Page Designer because it has dozens of flaws. Two of its biggest flaws are the big dealbreakers:

1. Page Designer can't be automated in any way, and
2. Page Designer can't create documents that are more than one page long.

So just about everyone who uses Airtable is required to use external apps to print documents like that.

You can create that functionality on your own by using Make and a document-creation tool like Google Docs, or Microsoft Word or Formstack Documents. You can also use Docs Automator or DocuMint or PDF Monkey or any other document-creation app that you like.

As i mentioned above, all of these can be fully automated with Make, which is a low-code/no-code automation tool that doesn’t require any knowledge of coding.

There is a small learning curve with Make, which is why I created this basic navigation video to help. I also provide the links to a few other Make training resources there as well.

p.s. If you have a budget for your project and you’d like to hire an expert Airtable consultant to help you with any of this, please feel free to contact me through my website: Airtable consulting — ScottWorld

Hey @Adam_TheTimeSavingCo, recreating the form isn’t exactly necessary, from what I gathered yesterday from meeting with inventory department, they just need a way to send a digital document to their various departments so they can list what they need. The form doesn’t need to actually place the order, but it does need to communicate to the inventory manager what is needed.

Hm, okay. And I take it the departments that need to list what they need do not have access to Airtable?

Correct. Some departments don’t even have computers so ideal they want a paper and digital version.

Roger that. Hmm, if they don’t have access to Airtable, then that Jotform input table thing is probably going to be the easiest way to deal with this.

So you’d just recreate the paper form in Jotform and then follow this guide to get Jotform to dump that data back into Airtable