Phil Cave – Technical Director Adepteq
We received a request to offer a solution to collect confirmations when a new starter has read and understood the company’s policy documents. The policy documents are currently emailed to the new starters personal email address as they do not yet have an account in the organisations’ Office 365 tenant and they then need to be printed, signed, scanned and returned. This is not a good solution because many people do not have access to a scanner.
My first thought was that either DocuSign or Adobe Sign would be the best tool for the job, but that would mean additional costs and training. They already have Office 365 and would like to use if possible.
To minimise administration and to avoid any security implications I do not want to offer a solution that includes adding the new starters as guest users to the tenant. This would mean that the user has to create a Microsoft account if they don’t already have one and this can cause support issues for non-IT literate users. It would also mean that there would end up being a lot of guest accounts in the Tenant that need to be removed at some point.
The solution that I put together is quite simple and uses Outlook, Forms, PowerApps and SharePoint.
The first step was to create the form. This has only a text box for the user to type their name and a submit button. The form must allow anonymous users because the new starters will not have an Office 365 account. The form settings are shown in the image below.
For simplicity the form that I created only collects the name of the new starter to use as their confirmation that they have read and understood the policies. You could collect as much information as you require, for example, there could be a tick box for each policy included in the policy pack.
Below are images showing how the form looks on a PC and on a mobile phone.
When you create a form using the Forms App it will work great on both PC and mobile without you having to do any extra work.
Next, I created a list in SharePoint. This will probably be in the HR team site and will serve as a register of all policy read confirmation. You can see from the image below that I am only using two columns to store the name and date. If the form was collecting more information, then a column would be required for each field on the form.
Next, I created a Flow using Power Automate. The Flow needs to run whenever a response to the Form is received and then add the Form data to the list in SharePoint.
First, create the trigger
Then get the response details
Then create a new list item in SharePoint using the form response(s)
This is one of the simplest Flows that I have had to create, but it does exactly as is needed. I could easily add some additional steps to enhance functionality, for example, a notification that the response was received could be sent to the HR team.
Now that everything is in place all that remains is to send out the email with policies attached and a link to the Form.
Go to your form in the Forms App and click Share and then copy the link.
The link will look like this:
You can add the link to the email using the insert link options in Outlook.