The Great Forms Drop Off

Jordan Hall

We’ve all fallen victim at some point to The Great Forms Drop-Off. Maybe you were signing up for a credit card or a bank account. We are wooed by the effortless experience of getting an insurance quote right from our mobile device. 

Then it happens, we are halted in our tracks smack dab in the middle of the process by a form that needs to be filled, signed, or processed offline. Experience drops off a cliff as we scramble to find a printer, a pen, and an app that will allow us to scan and upload the form to get back on track. 

What we thought would take a few minutes has turned into a pilgrimage to the 90’s and now dinner is getting cold and the kids are playing with the kitchen knives. All hell has broken loose and we’re unsure if and when we will get back to all those savings they promised on bundling our house and car insurance next year.

Fixing form experience issues

If this sounds familiar, know that things can get better. The good news is high visibility forms for customer acquisition are where a lot of development time and effort is spent for many organizations. The bad news is many of these enrollment or onboarding processes have adjacent forms which are stuck in legacy formats or provided by a third party (e.g. W-9 or W-4 forms). So what starts as a slick mobile application quickly devolves into trying to fix the jam in the printer.

Advancements in technology allow us to use a tool like Morf to generate an HTML 5 form from a PDF or paper form, which can be filled and signed on a mobile device. Document generation services provided by the likes of Adobe or PDF Tron can then inject the data into the original template as a document of record. 

End-to-end digital enrollment is a win for service providers and end-users. The service providers keep potential customers in low-cost, self-service channels while meeting regulatory and legal requirements. The end-user never has to leave a mobile device to enroll in a service.

Thinking beyond enrollment

This story holds true beyond enrollment. Any and all business forms that are stuck in legacy formats can be automatically converted to web forms, while still using the original form templates as a document of record. Here is a list of tools that already exist to do this work that will save you thousands of hours of development time and costs.

All of the above services work via API and can be embedded or called from within other applications or systems. So what are you waiting for? End The Great Forms Drop-Off now!

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