Background on Forms
If you want to geek out with us, read these few paragraphs about why forms are so powerful. If you just want to know how to use forms, skip to the next section.
One of the common workflow inefficiencies that we've seen in talking with hundreds of teams and brokerages is the way that data is shared between agents and the admin/transaction coordinators.
There is usually a point where data needs to be transferred between the two parties—for example, when an agent signs a listing, they need to submit data to a transaction coordinator who assists with uploading it to the MLS, marketing tasks, etc.
Let's break down that scenario.
The archaic workflow would be to blast information about the signed listing to the transaction coordinator in an email and hope that it gets taken care of. A slightly more modern process would involve a forms tool (such as Google Forms or WuFoo Forms) which require certain fields and at least put the data into a standard format.
Both of these processes carry certain inefficiencies:
- The initial form requires duplicate entry of fields (such as contact information or lead source) that are likely already available in the CRM
- The data from the form is never captured in a central database. The agent takes the time to enter data in the form. It hits the transaction coordinator's inbox, where it is maybe used once or twice—but the full extent of the data is not captured, so it's difficult to use in reporting.
- The agent would need to submit a separate form/email when the listing goes under contract—re-entering all of the data that they already entered in the other form. They would have to repeat this process for each subsequent event.
How to use forms in Sisu
Think of a form as a window into the database for any specific transaction. They are useful for an agent to submit data to the admin team, as well as for an admin to create certain views of the data that cater to their workflows.
I can see the forms that I have set up from admin>team settings>forms and fields.
The Transaction Sheet
The base (and most important) form in the system is the "Transaction Sheet". Any edits that I make to the transaction sheet here will be reflected in my transaction screen view (the one with the columns and rows—see screenshot below.) The fields shown in the Transaction Sheet (and the order which they appear) reflect the columns shown in the transaction screen (and the order which they appear).
This screen reflects the transaction sheet, which you can set up here
When you first check out this screen, you'll likely notice a handful of other forms. These are suggestions and examples that we've compiled from other teams in the industry. You can delete and modify them as needed, but they give you an idea of what type of forms can be used.
For example, you can have a form for when agents submit a listing, or a form for when that listing goes under contract. Or a form for when you sign a new buyer, or put a buyer under contract.
Basically, any time where you need an agent to report data to the administrative team could be a great use case for Sisu forms.
Setting up your forms
When you click edit, you'll have a header at the top to edit the basic features of the form. You can change the name and the description.
The "edit only" box means that the form will only be able to edit an existing transaction. It assumes that the transaction already exists in Sisu, so it allows you to remove required fields such as the client's first name or last name (because these have already been entered previously.)
The "restriction" drop down lets you designate if the form should show up on seller transactions, buyer transactions, or both.
Adding new fields to your forms
You can use the arrows to add in new fields and rearrange the order that the fields appear in.
You can also mark certain fields as "required". This means that the form will not update until required fields are entered, which can be useful for ensuring data integrity.
Note: Certain fields are required to create a transaction in Sisu. If you mark your transaction as "edit only", it will allow you to remove these fields from your form. However, the transaction must be an existing transaction in Sisu in order to remove the required fields. Simply put, you can't do the initial creation of a transaction using a form which does not have the fields that are required by the Sisu system, but, you can remove these required fields from forms which are only used to edit existing transactions.
Using the forms
When your agent clicks "edit" on a transaction:
It will pull up that specific transaction and all its associated forms:
Notice how the values on my "Transaction Sheet" automatically appear on my "Buyer Recap Contract to Close" form:
This saves time when filling out the forms, because a field will never need to be entered more than once.
I finished my form... now what?
Once your form is complete and you hit "submit", the data will be stored in the database.
If you have notifications set to trigger off certain date fields, these will automatically send an update to registered parties (i.e. I might set up a notification under admin>notifications to go out to my admin as soon as the "signed" date on a listing is filled in. As soon as the agent submits the form, the admin will receive that notification.)
You can also manually send out a copy of this form to whoever may need to be involved with it—for example, an administrator, transaction coordinator, or a vendor partner (such as a lender).
I can do this by clicking "Send Form Data":
The "Send Form Data" option populates the entire form into a template that I can modify and then send out:
I can even attach documents if I've uploaded them in the "Documents" section on the edit transaction screen.