How to submit to Google Drive and Google Sheets


You can submit your Formotus mobile business forms to Google Drive (the cloud-based Google file storage service). Formotus forms will integrate with both Google Drive and Google Sheets (Google's spreadsheet app) so that you can create both an archive of submitted forms and a Google Sheets-based dashboard for aggregating form data.

Here is a short video overview of how it works:


Step 1: Set up Google Drive and Google Sheets

If you don't have a Google Drive account you can create one for free. You will need at least one folder for storing all the files (PDF and XML) submitted from your Formotus forms, and you will also need to create a Google Sheet to store your data and links to your files.

To create a new folder in Google Drive once you've created an account, select the New button. Then select Folder and give it a name.  In my example, I'll name the folder 'Forms'.


Next, add a Google spreadsheet by right clicking the folder, and selecting Google Sheets


After selecting Google Sheets, your new sheet will open, and you can give it a name.  Although it isn't required, we recommend that you name the sheet the same as your form to keep things organized; I will name mine Expense Report.  This is where you're data will be stored when you submit your Formotus forms from your device. 


You can organize your folders and sheets in whatever way you like. For example, each form can submit files to its own folder, or you can set things up so that all of your Formotus forms will submit to the same folder. In a similar way, you can set things up so that the data from each Formotus form submits to a unique spreadsheet, or you can configure your settings so that all of the data from all of your forms submit to a single spreadsheet. Set up your Google account any way you choose, as long as you are able to provide a "can edit" link to each folder or sheet.

Below is an example of how you might organize your files in Google Drive:


In this example, you will create one folder named Formotus to contain everything Formotus related. Inside that folder, you create one Google spreadsheet (here Expense Report) to aggregate all your form data, and one folder (here Forms) to contain all your submitted files.

Step 2: Configure your data connection in your Formotus form

Open the Formotus form you've created. (Note: This data connection is not available for uploaded InfoPath forms.)

Important: You should not set up this data connection until all the fields in your form are finalized. Adding, deleting or renaming data fields after the data connection is created can cause issues with the way you have set up your Google account.

Log in to your Formotus account and open the form, then follow the steps below:

1. In the right pane, click on the Data button. On the Submit tab, click +Data Destination.


2. In the wizard that pops up select Google, then click Next.


3. See how to configure your data connection in the screen below:


Name: This is the name of the submit, for example, 'Inspection Form Google Submit'

Folder Url:  Copy and paste your Google folder Url here.  Be sure to get the shareable link, and choose 'can edit' instead of 'can view'.  Also, you have to make sure the folder/sheet are set to share.  You will want to share this sheet with anyone that will have the workflow form deployed to them.  Make sure that the setting reads: Link sharing on, and click Sharing Settings. On the Share with others screen below, make sure it is set to Anyone with the link can edit, then click Copy link.


Authenticate:  Select the Authenticate button.  This will prompt you for Google credentials if you are not already signed in (be sure to allow pop ups for this to work). 

Spreadsheet:  Once your Google account is authenticated, you can select the spreadsheet you want to submit to in the available dropdown.

Sheet Name:  This will likely be 'Sheet1', but If you have multiple, you can select which sheet you'd like to submit to.  Remember the Sheet name is not the title, it is the name of the tab at the bottom of the sheet.

File Name:  You can leave this default, but feel free to rename the file name to whatever you like.  This will be the name of the submitted instances.

Use this destination to submit from device menu:  This checkbox option is helpful if you don't have a submit button in your form, or if you want to give your users another way to submit.  This allows your users to submit the form by selecting the menu button rather than a submit button. 

What happens to the form after submit:  If you selected the 'Use this destination to submit from device menu' checkbox above, you have the option to choose what you'd like to happen when submitting.  You have three options after submitting: Close, Keep Open, or Open New (blank draft).

Select fields to promote in the sheet(optional): To make your form more organized, it is recommended to rename your field names before promoting them to make your data more clear. This lets you aggregate submitted data in a sheet where it can be searched, sorted, graphed and analyzed. By default, a field name example would be 'textbox1', but you may want to rename it to something that matches the control's label.  The field names will show up in your Google sheet as column names.  To change field names, find the Fields tab in the right panel of the screen.  Select one of the fields to see the Properties option where you can change the Field Name.

[Note: This is an advanced feature that is not available in the Basic plan.]

When you submit to a Google Sheet, the columns that are created in the sheet always include the file name, links to the PDF and XML files, time submitted and the name of the user who submitted the form (if available).


Pictured above: Selected fields that will be promoted in the Google Sheet.


Pictured above: A form instance submitted from a mobile device to the Google Sheet data destination.  Bordered in red are the promoted fields. Edit, View, Title, Created, and Created By columns are all included by default.

[Note: Do not promote fields that contain images such as photos, signatures or maps. Images will not be visible in sheet cells, but will instead appear as long base64 strings.] To see any images in a form, click the link to the PDF file and view the whole form including images.


 Keywords: Google Drive, Google Sheets, FormDesigner




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