How K-12 Institution Organized Online Communication Through Approval Workflow

Written by Abby Nieten on December 13, 2013

Posted in Case Studies, Workflow Automation

Recently, we debuted our Approval Workflow feature, which allows Formstack users to approve, deny, or comment on form submissions. Approval Workflow features robust functionality that enables teams to quickly collaborate on data, including multi-step approvals, approval routing, and submission access via email.

We’ve identified three organizations that are successfully developing their business processes around Approval Workflow. We hope to provide your company with case studies about early adopters of Approval Workflow, as well as to inspire your team to start transferring files and communication online.

Customer Spotlight: Tim Nethers, The First Academy
The First Academy is a K-12 college preparatory school located in Orlando, Fla. According to its award-winning website, the faith-based school boasts a 100 percent college acceptance rate for graduating seniors, who have cumulatively received over $41 million in scholarship offers.

Tim Nethers, our customer contact, is The First Academy’s front-end web developer. His other specialties include IT support, device and mobile app management, and tech training. Nethers has played a key role in the development of The First Academy’s Formstack account, which has grown from 60 forms to over 170 within one year.

The Tech Problem:
After transitioning to his position at The First Academy from a role at a larger university, Nethers found that he didn’t have as much time to focus on building forms from scratch.

“At my previous job, I coded all of the university’s online forms. However, I was working with a much larger team, so I had more time to focus on coding forms,” said Nethers. “When I came to The First Academy, I was the only web guy. I didn’t have the time to build forms by hand anymore.”

The Solution:
The First Academy already had a Formstack account, so Nethers quickly harnessed this ability to quickly build online forms. “I really love Formstack’s integrations, the iframe embed feature, and conditional logic,” said Nethers. “We’ve switched all of our payment processes to online forms, including tuition payment and club fees. It eliminates the need to sort cash payments.”

The school also uses Formstack for its annual SummerQuest seasonal education program, which allows students to take courses in photography, theatre, lacrosse and other interests. All registration and medical forms are completed through Formstack and feature conditional logic and e-signature fields. Students can quickly sign up for the courses they want (26 in total) on one organized form using conditional logic.

Related: How The First Academy Overhauled
Payment Processes

Where does Approval Workflow come in? 
The First Academy is slowly beginning to develop more forms that need to be approved by certain staff members before getting passed to the school principal. For example, the school’s medical absence forms first go to one of the school’s nurses before being sent to the principal. From there, the principal can approve or deny the absence, as well as write comments on the submission.

“We hope to soon move our admissions approval process to Formstack,” said Nethers. “We envision a process where a prospective student applies for The First Academy using a Formstack form, and the admissions department will review the application after their deposit is approved. From there, the submission is passed to the principal.” Nethers also mentioned how they frequently use the approve-by-email feature within Approval Workflow.

Ready to try Approval Workflow at your Business? 
Now that we’ve built upon our initial feature, we want to give users the ability to try it for free. If you are on the Starter or Professional plan, but would like to try Formstack’s Approval Workflow, we are offering 30-day trial access to this specific feature. To start your 30-day test period, just click on the “Approvals” section within your form’s Settings tab.

Try Approval Workflow Now >>