Microsoft Word 2016 Bootcamp - Zero to Hero Training

How to make an interactive form in Microsoft Word 2016

Daniel Walter Scott || VIDEO: 49 of 52

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Hi there, in this video we're going to look at making a form that can be filled out in Word, and be emailed to us. So, couple of things that make this form cool before you go and make it, is that you can't click on the word 'Name', so you can't go and adjust things and wreck your lines and stuff, but they can fill in here, that says 'Click or tap here to enter text'. So I can put in my name, email address, easy, I might as well put in my actual one, if you want to reach out, here I am. 'Course Title', this is quite cool, it’s a drop down menu, so we need to make some drop down menus. 'Date of Birth', we've added a date picker, this little check box here, so you can turn it on and off. 'Comments' is not very exciting, just add any old comments, you like anything, and if you hit this 'Submit' button here, it's going to stick it in an email and send it to us, kind of. So, let's get off, and start making our form in Microsoft Word.

I'm going to bring in some text, just plain old text for my form. So, 'File', 'Open', and on your example files there's one in '06' called 'Forms', I'm going to copy that, I'm going to close it down and bring it into this document. 

What I don't want to do, remember, is I don't want these underlines, because underlines do this when people type them in, and they destroy our formatting, and everything kind of jumps around. So, what I need to do is I want to put in just some interactive forms, and we need to get a little bit nerdy. It's not that hard, but we need to turn on something called 'Developer'. Now, don't be scared. We're going to go to 'File', down to 'Options', go down to 'Customize Ribbon', we're going to turn on 'Developer', it's kind of some hard core Word stuff that they hide away, for us nerds, but it's not that hard, I promise.

'Developer', and I have my cursor flashing where I want my first bit of text, and just as a little option I want you to kind of limit yourself, also, this stuff is a bit more scary, but just the stuff in here. There's a 'Rich Text' box I'm going to put in, and the 'Plain Text' box. I'm going to put in this plain text. Rich text box allows people to put in all sorts of stuff; images, and hyperlinks, and stuff. I just want to force them into a plain text. So I'll click on that second one. You can see here, now, when someone clicks on it, they're going to be able to type into it. So I'm going to type my name into it. So, kind of looks the same, except that I can restrict this in little bits, and nobody can adjust the word 'Name'. The other thing I can do is I can start formatting this, so I'm going to 'undo' till the text is gone. 

So how do I want it to appear? At the moment, have it selected, you can go up to this one called 'Properties', and you can start playing around with it. Do I want a 'box' around the outside, or do I just want 'none'? That's what I like more. You can start styling this with different paragraph text, you can create your own style for these fonts, it's up to you. And I click 'OK'. It just means that's going to sit there nicely, and when I start typing there's no box around the outside, and people can fill in their name.

I want to do the same thing here, I'm going to go to 'Rich Text' box, go to 'Properties', and I'm going to turn off-- there's no line around the outside. 

Now, 'Course Title'-- text boxes are pretty easy. The 'Course Title' is going to be different, it's going to be a drop down box where people can pick from the options that I give them. And it's this one here, they call it the 'Combo Box', so I'm going to click on this one here, called 'Combo Box', and there's only one item in there at the moment, so I'm going to go up to 'Properties', and down the bottom here, this is my drop down list. We're going to leave 'Choose an item' because that's going to be the first option. We're going to click 'Add', and I'm going to call this one, say they want to do 'inDesign' training with us, or they want to do 'Excel' training. I'm going to go through and add a couple of options. We got lots of courses. 

These are the options I want to be here, and-- weird thing is, if I put a 'None', the drop down box doesn't work, so leave it as 'Bounding Box', and click 'OK', and what will happen is, people will come in, they’ll be able to 'Choose an item', there's the drop down menu, pick 'inDesign' from the options, nice. I'm going to leave that as item there.

'Date of birth', we could just leave this as a text box, but we're going to use the date picker. With it selected, I go up to 'Properties', and I can decide on how I want this displayed. I like it like this, so it's got the day and the name of the month there, click 'OK'.  

Next thing we're going to do, 'Do you require a laptop?' This is going to be a check box, like a-- tick it if you'd like this to happen. You can see, there's a little check box. Nice and easy one. Click on it, gets this. I'm going to get rid of the border on the outside. That’s the nice little designer in me, don't like the border around the outside. So they're going to uncheck that, or check it, as they need.

'Comments', we're just going to put in another text box here. Because I'm Dan, I'm going to go through, and spell it all right. Nice.

So that's how to create a form. Now we’ve got the details in there, but we still have this problem where people can go through and start messing with our formatting. I just want people to only be able to type in these without messing anything up. So what we're going to do is we're going to look at this one that says 'Restrict Editing.' Click on him. I'm going to 'Editing Restrictions', click on this one here, and I'd like to say that-- this means that they can't change anything, I want them to be able to change, nothing but 'Filling in forms'. Eventually, you have to hit this one that says, 'Start Enforcing Protection'. So click that.

I could put a password in so that only people that have the password can undo this, I'm just going to click 'OK', and not put in a password; passwords always end up being a problem for me. So we'll leave that. What ends up happening is, I can save this, send it to people, they could download it, and then, unless they go in to 'Developer', and go to 'Restrict Editing', and go to 'Stop Protection', they can turn it off then, but 99.9% of the population are not going to know how to do this, and even if they do, well, who cares.

I'm going to 'Stop Protection' now so I can do some editing. So that is what you can do, go back and start editing these bits. 'Editing Forms', 'Start Protection', click 'OK', and it means-- watch this, I can't click on these, I can't click on the 'Name's, all I can do is enter my text into here, and I've got myself a nice little form that I can fill in now. 'Email', there you are. 'Course Title', I can pick on 'Excel', my 'date of birth', 'Laptop', 'Comments'. Great.

So now what do we do when we want people to send it to us? Now the easiest way is to get them to save it and email it to you, or print it off and post it in snail mail. Now that's not ideal, there is a way of adding a button to it so you can get it to automatically email that to you. The only trouble with automatic buttons is that we need to enable something called 'Macros', and what happens is, if I send this Word doc out to people, or it's downloadable from my website and has macros enabled, what will happen is a lot of people freak out, because macros can contain malicious stuff, so what people tend to do is, especially big companies, is they don't allow people to work on documents that have macros. Also, it's a bit of a freak out for people that open the file that says, “Would you like to open Macros?” “Would you like macros enabled?” a lot of people just don't. So, you might just have to write, “Please email this document to” at the end, unfortunately, or “Print this document and send it to us.”

Let's say we're going to go the whole hog and do the button option. To get a button in there we need to-- over here where it says 'Restrict Editing', we'll stop restricting it for the moment, and you got to have your cursor somewhere else wherever your button wants to go, and up here, there's this little drop down option, and we're going to use this one here, 'rectangle', called 'Command Button'. Now double click it, and what needs to go in here is a bit of code. I've given you a bit of code, I'm going to go back into Word, and I'm going to go to 'File', 'Open', in your 'Desktop', on your 'Exercise Files', there's one called 'Forms', and there's one there called 'Send Form Button Code'. 'Open' it up, grab that, 'copy' it, and 'paste' it into our Visual Basic. So this opens in the background, don't be scared by it, yes, it's a little scary, and just paste that between these two lines here. 

The thing we might change as well is the name of the button, by default-- what is it called? Caption. It's called 'CommandButton1', let's just call this one 'Submit'. Now I'm going to close it down, and now I got a 'Submit' button. Now, to make the button work we need to enable our restrictions again, so I'm going to click off down here, and before it will let me save I need to switch off 'Design Mode', that comes on automatically. Back to this mode, let's hit 'Save', 'Yes, Start Enforcing'. What I might do is I'd have to go off and clear off-- I've got lots of text that I had in there, so because I'm turning this back into our regular old form, it doesn't have my details in it. I'm going to have to go and pick that first option because I messed about with it.

So we got it all in there, we're going to enable our protection, click 'OK'. Now it's the form they can fill out, and when they're ready they hit 'Submit'. And what it will do is it will open up 'Outlook'. Now, because I've been working on this document before, I've already enabled macros for mine for working,   what will happen for other people is when they open this document, there's going to be lots of warning saying 'Macros have been enabled'. So, not an ideal solution but probably the best one is to have a little thing that says "Please print" or "Please attach and send to this email address here.”

All right, that is how to make a form in Microsoft Word.