Webmaster Info for Using eForms

Why use eForms?

The eForms site has been established as a convenient resource for web users to be able to quickly locate institutional electronic forms posted https://www.southalabama.edu. The forms are to be indexed by department or college.

The url for the site is https://www.southalabama.edu/departments/eforms and can be found in the main A-Z index for the website.

Our goal is to have the current version of each form saved in the eform folder for the department responsible for maintenance and upkeep of the form. For example, the travel reimbursement form should be saved in the folder, /departments/eforms/travel. If your department wants to build a helpful links page for your staff and point to the travel form, you should simply link to the form located in the /departments/eform/travel directory. If the form is updated in three months, it will be updated in only one location and anyone linking to the document will get the new version. Any department on campus can link to the form but should not upload a copy of the form into their college or department's directory. There should be only one copy of a form on the webserver so that those referencing the form will always have access to the most current version.

Important Note:  All fillable forms must be checked for Accessibility before they are added to your eforms page.  With Adobe Acrobat you can run the Accessibility check and see a report outlining errors found and tips for making changes to bring your form into compliance.  Some of the most frequent mistakes made are failing to label form fields and adding alternate text, defining the language for the form, adding alternate text for images, and defining the tab order.  Always insure that your forms meet the requirements before linking them to your page.


What you need to do?

  • Each department will need to establish a webmaster responsible for maintenance of their eForm page and let Web Services know so appropriate access can be granted to the files and the individual can be trained on the tools required to maintain your page and upload revised files.

  • For many of the departments, a page has already been created using forms that were referenced by your department on the old eforms page. You will need to check the accuracy of links on this page and upload the most current version of your forms.

  • In addition, forms may be added or removed from your eForms page and you will be able to make the necessary changes. Routine maintenance is easy.

    1. Maintain the list of links on your page
    2. Upload new or revised forms (Whenever possible, overwrite the existing form with a revised form of the same name to reduce the number of changes to links referencing your form throughout the web.)
    3. Notify Web Services when you have changed or added a link so an entry can be made to the eForm A-Z Index.

Once you have your credentials, how should you proceed?

  • Maintain links on your page
    1. Open your page. Go to https://www.southalabama.edu/departments/eforms and navigate to your page.
    2. Login to OU using your credentials.
    3. Edit the table entries using WYSIWYG tools.
    4. Set a link to the form. If necessary, upload the form to your directory.
  • Upload new or revised forms
    1. For new forms, upload your new forms to the directory and then set your links.  Be certain you check your new form for accessibility and correct any errors prior to uploading it to the eForms directory.

    2. For revised versions of the forms, please be sure to name the new version with the same name as previously used, check the form for accessibility and then upload it.  Be sure to click the overwrite checkbox on the Upload tab on the Pages view to overwrite your old form. (Note: Retaining the name of your form is important so that links will not be broken when others have referenced the link for pages on their site. Again, think back to the Travel form and how many places a link might be set to reference it. You would not want the name of the form to change so that all the previously set links will remain functional.)

      It is important to note that you should not use the webserver as storage for old versions of your form. Please keep a copy of the old versions on your local device so that the webserver will be free from old forms that could be mistakenly referenced.

  • Update A-Z listing -- Notify Web Services

The A-Z eForms Index is a compilation of all eforms available on the site.  These can be accessed by typing any word in the form name in the search field or using the A-Z listing to display items beginning with the designated letter.  In addition, you will notice a list of tags in the right-hand column of the page.  Using these tags, you can pull up forms related to a specific topic.  A form can be linked to multiple tags if it is related to more than one topic making it easier for the user to locate the form even though they may not know its name.  

When you are checking the A-Z index, please also check to make sure that your form is appropriately tagged so it can be found easily.  If tags need to be edited, please indicate the desired change when you submit a link to Web Services for inclusion in the index.*

    1. If you add a new form, please send the name of the form to Web Services along with the correct link to the form.  *Also indicate desired tags as discussed above.
    2. If you update a form – change the version of the form but do not change the way it is listed in the index or the link – there is no need to notify Web Services.
    3. If you change the name of the form, please notify Web Services of the old name as it appears in the A-Z, the new name, and the new link if the link has changed. Click here to submit a request to update the eforms A-Z.

Submit A-Z Update