Back

Published on:

20 March 2023

Author:

Rachael Adams

Microsoft Forms: Get More Value From Your Business Data

You’ll often hear us say that data carries tremendous value, and primary data such as surveys and feedback can be a real treasure trove. There are a few favourites available, but if you haven’t checked out Microsoft Forms recently, you might be surprised what it can offer, over and above the cloud apps like Survey Monkey and Google Forms.

First things first, Microsoft Forms is another of those hidden gems included in your existing Microsoft 365 subscription. When it was originally launched, it was pretty basic, and few people even knew it was there. Since then, Microsoft has quietly been adding features and creating enough added value that it is well worth exploring. Here are some things worth looking out for:

  • Training – Much like other survey options, Microsoft Forms is quite self-explanatory and simple to use. There are, though, free training resources online for less confident users, or those keen to try something more complex.
  • Security – More apps means more places your data exists, and more to secure. Forms keeps everything within your existing Microsoft platform, all protected under your existing login multi-factor authentication, so you have control over your data.
  • Cost – Rather than paying for other cloud services, Forms is already included.
  • Efficiency – If you’re not already using a form tool, this will convert your process from paper to digital, which saves time and effort, and offers a better experience for respondents.
  • Management – Users are added and deleted as they come and go, with no separate onboarding or offboarding needed. If someone leaves, you still have access to their data.
  • Data Analysis and Integration – Microsoft Forms can be easily integrated with other Microsoft applications like Excel, PowerPoint, and Teams. It provides users with real-time data analysis, making it easy to understand survey results.
  • Automation – Because it is right there in Microsoft 365, it is also easy to take advantage of its powerful automation tools to improve outcomes. For example, completion of a survey might automatically prompt an email offering relevant support, or trigger a report sent to key staff, or even posted in Teams.
  • Templates – Most tools have limited templates, but it will be no surprise that Microsoft excels here, so you don’t have to reinvent the wheel every time.

It is worth mentioning that Microsoft Forms is not just for surveys. At TechPath, for example, we use it for event RSVPs, customer feedback, quizzes and tests, incident responses – even expense forms, holiday requests, and gathering information for quotes. Our staff vote for their peers in our quarterly MVP awards, with automated reminders to make sure everyone has a say. It is a quick and effective way to gather information and trigger an automated process, getting the right information to the right person in the format they need. For an often-underrated tool, Forms is a great way to create and gain greater value from data.

Want more tips and tricks for getting the most out of your Microsoft 365 subscription? Read our blog series, or chat with your TechPath account manager to learn more.