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Tech Bite: Save time! How to Auto-Populate Forms with Database Lookup

Are you looking for ways to increase Laserfiche Forms efficiency, by automating how information is collected and populated in forms? Consider adding data with a database lookup to auto-populate form’s fields. When forms are pre-filled with information, it can save users valuable time and minimize data entry errors.

This tech bite reviews the step-by-step process for using the lookup feature to populate forms automatically.

First, evaluate and determine the form you would like to have auto-populated with information; examples might include new hire paperwork, service contracts, or account summary forms. The next steps reveal how to add the lookup to populate forms.

Step 1: Verify/Connect the Data Source

Before you begin creating lookup rules, you need to verify the connection from Laserfiche Forms to the data source. If the data source connection is available but not configured, it is easy to set up. Users with the Administrator Role in Laserfiche Forms can access data sources by clicking on their account name and selecting the administration option.

The administration page displays a data source option in the menu, clicking this option provides a list of configured data sources. If the data source you are looking for does not appear, click the new data source button to add it.

Step 2: Define Data Source Access

Define the forms that can access the data source. In some cases, the data source may already exist, but access to the forms needs editing. The list of data sources will display, choose the data source and add the forms processes that need access.

Step 3: Configure the Lookup Rule

Laserfiche Forms can automatically get information from a data source and insert that information into a form using a lookup rule. In the forms process designer, users can create a lookup rule by selecting the Laserfiche Form the data will be populated into and clicking the lookup rules tab.

When adding a new rule, users need to specify the data source and the table or view the holds the relevant data.

Once the user establishes a data source and table preference, the next step is to specify the criteria for when to retrieve data from the data source and which fields will be populated. These selections will vary between forms.

The example below uses the “Sales” data source and is referencing the “Customers” table. When the field “Customer ID,” is recognized on the form, it matches the data source column “ID.” Then the fields for “Customer Name” and “Customer Address,” on the form are populated with the data source values for this information. Users can add additional rules from the same or other data sources and fields to meet their needs.

Auto-populating forms from data source information will save users time and is a valuable tool for minimizing data entry errors. Leveraging this feature allows organizations to keep documentation consistent and accurate across forms. For more information, or help to configure lookup rules, contact Cities Digital Consulting Team.

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