Posted in Google Apps for Business, Google Apps for Education, Google for Work, Google Spreadsheets, HR Process Automation

frevvo + Google Apps: Part 2. Mileage Reimbursement

Does your organization uses Google Apps? You can combine frevvo + Google Apps to create some really cool and useful solutions. In Part 1 of this series, I showed you how to save submissions from a frevvo form into a Google Sheet.

Today, we’ll take a look at another common example. A workflow for mileage reimbursement is a routine business approval workflow used in many organizations. Unfortunately, it’s usually a PDF form (for example, see here and here).  It’s tedious and mistake-prone. Calculate miles manually from odometer readings, figure out the total mileage and reimbursement amount.

What a complete wasteMileage Reimbursement form of time!! With frevvo, everything is automated. Enter your origin and destination and the system will calculate the travel distance using the cloud-based Google Distance Matrix API. Of course, it’ll automatically add all the mileage and calculate the total amount. Try it yourself by clicking the image or this link.

Scarcity of talent is the #1 challenge most organizations face today. Why are your talented people wasting valuable time on unproductive things?

Digitize your approval workflows with frevvo. Your employees will be happier and you’ll be amazed at how much time & money you save. Doesn’t get any better than that. Interested? Contact frevvo today.

Like what you see? Check out Part 3 which shows you how you can create dynamic drop down controls where the choices come form a Google Sheet.

Posted in Google Apps for Business, Google Apps for Education, Google for Work, Google Spreadsheets

frevvo + Google Apps: Part 1. Save to a Google Sheet

Does your organization uses Google Apps? If so, you can combine frevvo + Google Sheets/Drive etc. to create some really cool and useful solutions. In this multi-part series of articles, we’ll explore several possibilities:

  1. Save submissions from a frevvo form into a Google Sheet (this article).
  2. Perform automated mileage calculations using the Google Maps API.
  3. Create dynamic drop down controls where the choices come form a Google Sheet.
  4. Update a Google Sheet with values from a form.
  5. Save documents generated by your frevvo form to Google Drive.
  6. Put it all together to create a leave approval workflow that connects with a Google Sheet, routes between multiple users for signatures, updates the Google Sheet and saves PDF documents to Google Drive.
  7. Single Sign On to frevvo using your Google Apps credentials.

Let’s look at the most basic and common use case. You have a form and you want to collect your submissions in a Google Sheet.

Step 1: First, you have to get an access token. This is a one-time step. Login to your Google account and then visit: https://app.frevvo.com/google/consent. Follow the prompts and copy the access token and save it. Detailed documentation is here.

Step 2: Create your form. We’ve created a simple example contact form with a few fields. If you need help creating a form, check out the Quick Demo and Form Designer tutorial videos on our website.

Contact Form
Contact Form

PropertiesStep 3: Create your Google Spreadsheet. Make sure the column header names match the Name property of each control. You can view the spreadsheet we created for the form above at this link (it’s read-only). See how the column names are Name, Email, Street, City etc. The Name property of the corresponding control in the form is set to match exactly.

Step 4: Connect your form to your spreadsheet using the Save to Google Sheets wizard. Detailed documentation is here. You must login using your user id and auth token (from Step 1), select a spreadsheet and worksheet and click Finish.

That’s it. When the form is submitted, the data will be saved to the selected Google Sheet. You can perform all the usual operations on the data e.g. see the Graphs Tab in our example sheet and you can see how we have created some sample graphs to analyze our submission data.

graphs
Google Spreadsheet graphs for submission data

Interested in learning more? Visit our website to view examples, watch videos, sign up for a free 30-day trial or contact us for more information.

Like what you see. Check out Part 2 which shows you how you can perform automated mileage calculations using the Google Maps API.

Posted in Approval Process, Customers, Google for Work, Google Spreadsheets

[Customer Success Story] High Hopes frees up personnel to focus on participants

High HopesHigh Hopes, established in 1974, is a non profit, therapeutic horseback riding center. They serve individuals with disabilities through equine assisted activities, offer educational opportunities for professionals and rely on their volunteer corps for many administrative duties.

With a growing staff and significant volunteer corps, they were finding their paper-based processes (to track cancellations, volunteer inquiries, training and education candidates) to be cumbersome and wasteful.

“Now that we use frevvo regularly to manage our daily communication chains and workflows, it’s hard to imagine how we managed without it.” Megan Ellis, Volunteer Manager, High Hopes

They turned to frevvo’s cloud-based solutions to automate these. Using electronic forms and approval workflows that work with Google Spreadsheets, they’re saving time & money and, most important of all, they’ve freed up employees’ time so that that they can focus  on the participants they serve.

Read the Case Study and Sign up for a Free 30 day trial today.

Posted in Approval Process, Google Apps for Business, Google for Work, Workflows

Using frevvo + Google Drive for Document/File Management

It goes without saying that there are big advantages to having your files in the Cloud. They’re automatically backed up, secure, can be accessed from anywhere etc. You can use Google Drive as a simplified document/file management system with folders/sub-folders, sharing and permissions.
frevvo + Google AppsIf your organization uses Google Apps, you can combine frevvo + Google Drive in interesting ways to create some cool solutions. For example, you can create an electronic approval workflow for a Purchase Order, and send it to your customer for signature (electronic, of course). Once signed, the customer gets a receipt (PDF) by email. But, the PDF can also be saved to Google Drive in the proper folder/sub-folder e.g. Purchase Orders/Acme Inc 2015_04_09 or Purchase Orders/Order 1234 or whatever makes sense for you. Check out this 90 sec video to see how it works. As POs flow through frevvo and are approved by customers, they’ll automatically be filed away in the correct place.

What about finding POs? As you might expect, Google Drive has great Search. When a file of a common type is uploaded to Google Drive, it is automatically indexed so users can easily search for it in their Drive files. Google Drive also goes much further. For example, it’s capable of recognizing objects and landmarks in images uploaded to Drive. Searching for a PO is just like doing a regular Google search. Just type in some text (a name, an address, an amount, anything …) and Drive will find files containing that text.

Now, obviously, Drive isn’t a full-fledged document management system and there are pitfalls to using folder structures for document management. But, the price is hard to beat and there are many situations where it’s genuinely useful. Especially, when combined with an automated approval workflow from frevvo 🙂 Check out our Google Apps Solutions and contact us for more information.

Posted in Approval Process, Google for Work, Mobile

Leave Approval Workflows with Google Spreadsheets

Does your organization use Google Apps? If so, you can combine frevvo + Google Apps to create some really cool and useful solutions. For example, consider Leave Approvals. Everyone does it usually on a paper or Excel form sent by email. Wouldn’t it be nice if the form knew how many days of each type (Sick, Annual, Personal etc.) you had left? Usually, that means integrate with some HR system or buy an expensive solution.

frevvo + Google AppsNot so with frevvo + a Google Spreadsheet. Here’s a spreadsheet that contains employee information. Much simpler and easier to maintain for most people than a complicated HR system. And here’s a frevvo workflow that uses that spreadsheet. Try it out – pick an employee from the pick list at the top and frevvo gets the # of available days of each type from the spreadsheet, shows them in the Table and enables only rows where you have available days. The employee can sign electronically and the workflow is automatically routed to the supervisor.

When the leave is approved, frevvo will automatically update the Google Spreadsheet so it’s always kept in sync. Nothing manual to do.

Fast, easy and it’ll save your employees time. Want to learn more? Contact us today.

Posted in Approval Process, Google for Work, Green Schools, Mobile, Paperless Schools, Workflows

10 reasons to digitize approvals in 2015

Stop using paperIt’s no secret that paper or Word/Excel-based processes still power day-to-day approvals at most schools and businesses. How the heck are we still discussing this in 2015? As business and society becomes increasingly mobile, digitizing approval workflows is more important than ever before. Beyond the usual save time & money, here are 10 reasons to digitize your approval processes:

  1. Streamline the routine stuff
    It may be a routine day-to-day process but delays can be costly and paper/email are lousy solutions. Passing paper around or chasing emails wastes time and inhibits collaboration – both major no-nos in today’s world.
  2. Simplify Email
    There’s a reason for the hundreds of to-do list apps in the App Store. We’re bombarded with hundreds of emails every day. It’s hard to keep track and easy to forget about getting to things that need doing. When managers forget, employees have to waste time chasing them down to figure out where the approval is.
  3. Get with the Mobile Age
    Smart phones are ubiquitous. Practically everyone has one and we all know how rapidly usage is growing. Ditch the paper/Excel and let busy parents, employees & customers handle approvals on their phones anytime and from anywhere. Make life easier for everyone.
  4. Enough with the printing
    Approvals usually require signatures. You can fill everything else online but chances are the PDF or Excel is physically printed solely for getting the Manager or CFO’s signature. Eliminate it with electronic signatures. There’s no excuse for that in 2015 – we all know there are too few trees. It’s easy to do your part.
  5. Facilitate Self Service
    Automated workflows allow 24×7 access from any device. Today, most people prefer to engage with organizations via the web rather than calling or coming to your office. For everything from school permissions to sales orders, paperless forms make life easier for your customers – another potential game-changing initiative.
  6. Tracking and accountability
    Digital approvals are easy to track with the click of a button or swipe of a finger. Stop making employees search through email or chase down paper forms to figure out where approvals are.
  7. Reduce Errors
    It’s easy to make mistakes like using an older version of a Word document or a calculation error or simply forgetting to fill out parts of the form. Then, someone has to manually get them fixed. Digital versions eliminate these unnecessary and wasteful errors.
  8. Business Intelligence
    Digital processes can be integrated with your other business systems and services. It can really improve efficiency by, for example, eliminating duplicate data entry. More important, integration can extract essential information and dramatically improve business intelligence and give you insights on how better to operate – a potential game-changer.
  9. Resilience
    The Cloud now provides unlimited, affordable storage and access from anywhere with redundancy and disaster recovery that cannot be matched by most organizations. Use it and you can stop worrying about fires and floods and the like and operate a resilient organization that focuses on customers.
  10. Go Green
    ‘Nuff said!

It’s 2015 – why are you still printing and scanning and emailing? Contact frevvo today and learn how you can start implementing these game-changers today.

Posted in Approval Process, Forms, Google Apps for Business, Google Apps for Education, Google for Work, Mobile, Usability, Workflows

Run YOUR business from your phone

Salesforce.com’s CEO claims that he runs his entire business from his phone. We all have smart phones and use cloud services extensively yet how many of us can run even part of our business from a phone?

The problem is that every organization still has those pesky enterprise workflows. The things we must do day in and day out – sign sales orders, approve purchase requisitions, refer patients, on-board employee and so on. Usually, this means printing, signing and scanning – a long, long way from running your business on your phone.

With frevvo, you can take a big step in this direction easily. Everything just works automatically on mobile. Check out the short video below.

Of course, your organization is unique so we’ve made it super easy to customize the forms and workflows to suit your needs. It’s all in the cloud and frevvo is affordable, pay-as-you-go with no long-term commitments.

Give it a shot to see how easy it is. You really could be running YOUR business on your smart phone sooner than you think.

Posted in Approval Process, Forms, Google Apps for Business, Google Apps for Education, Google for Work, Google Spreadsheets, Workflows

Better Leave Approvals with frevvo + Google Apps for Work

One of the most common approval workflows customers automate with frevvo is Leave Approval (Vacation or Absence Request). There are several types of leave (Annual, Sick, Floating etc.) and the typical workflow is Employee -> Line Manager -> Payroll/HR. Easy enough to automate.

But, wouldn’t it be nice if the form knew how many days of each type were left so there’s no way for the employee to request more days than he/she has available? Integrating with payroll/HR systems is possible but messy.

Leave ApprovalAn easy alternative is to just use a Google spreadsheet. Here’s an example spreadsheet and a frevvo form that uses the spreadsheet. Based on the logged in employee, the form will pull the available days from the spreadsheet. For this demo, select an employee from the pick list (which itself comes from the spreadsheet) and you’ll see the available days pick lists updating dynamically. This demo only shows whole days but it’s trivial to extend to allow half days or even hours if necessary.

When the workflow completes and the leave is approved, frevvo will update the Google spreadsheet so it’s automatically kept in sync.

Yet another way frevvo helps you get MORE out of Google Apps for Work. Contact us for more information.

Posted in Forms, Google Apps for Business, Google Apps for Education, Google for Work, Google Spreadsheets, k-12

Using a Google Spreadsheet like a database

There are many cool and useful things you can do with Google Apps for Work like collaborative editing of documents, inexpensive storage and so on. But add frevvo to the mix, and you can take it to the next level and solve real business problems.

One example is dynamic web forms and approval workflows that treat the underlying spreadsheet as a database. The applications are endless – Sales Orders, Employee Records, Student Information and so on.

Check out the video below. It’s not even 2m long and shows you an example from Education. Teachers, administrators or parents can securely access student information stored in a Google Spreadsheet without actually having access to it. They’ll only see information relevant to their particular need, edits are controlled (e.g. data is validated, rules can perform computations etc.) and the user experience is so much nicer.

There’s much more you can do with frevvo + Google Apps such as signatures & workflow. Contact us to learn more or Try frevvo free for 30 days.

Posted in Approval Process, Forms, Google Apps for Business, Google Apps for Education, Google for Work, Workflows

frevvo + Google for Work: Purchase Order Workflow (90 sec video)

A purchase order workflow boils down to filling out a form (the PO) and getting it signed. Usually, that means filling out a Word document, saving it to PDF and e-mailing it to the customer. The customer then prints, signs, scans and e-mails it back. Then, it’s saved somewhere (filing cabinet, e-mail folder).

With frevvo + Google for Work, you can automate this process completely with ease. Check out the 90 second video below. Fill out the PO electronically and click a button. The customer gets an email, clicks it on any device, reviews the PO and signs right there. You’ll get the signed PO back by email and it’s uploaded to Google Drive. That’s it.

Want to try it out for yourself. Contact frevvo today.