Reimagining the Form

By Brian Paget, Technical Director for Public Sector

Look around your office today. There are daily activities in our workplace so routine that people tend to overlook their need for modernization. The forms we fill out every day are a perfect example of an historically paper-based tool that can have a new life in the digital age.

At Adobe, we recognize the need to update this antiquated system of collecting data. Forms were initially created for paper-based purposes, to collect information and file it away until needed. Forms were made to place orders, be signed for approvals, fulfill legal purposes and more. But why are we still using a format created 50 years ago even as our technology interfaces have changed significantly?

Technology has outpaced the innovation of the form, but not the need for it. For the State Department, forms are critical for passport applications, and while we can’t yet submit a passport application online, the State Department, using the Adobe platform, has taken a first step by creating an online tool to educate applicants on the information needed to apply for a passport to streamline on the process.

Some private sector companies have already implemented innovative forms processes. For example, Adobe worked with Nike to create the NIKEiD site. Instead of filling out a typical form, customers are lead through an interactive experience that allows them to personalize and visualize exactly the product they want. A similar system could be applied to many now forms-based government processes, for both citizens and public sector employees.

From applying for visas and filing taxes, to paying parking tickets, and renewing driver’s licenses, forms are an integral part of the public sector’s interactions with citizens. Government organizations now have the opportunity to modernize this key touch-point with citizens by improving the online tools people use every day. The recent Adobe Digital Government Survey indicated that 62 percent of citizens would feel more positively toward government if online tools were improved.

For more information about how Adobe can improve online forms and customer experiences, visit this page.