One of our programs, the Global Change Leaders program open to women from the Global South, accepts applications for only two months of the year. We receive thousands of applications for this program, which is completely funded, but we can accept only 15 women. Although the application process is all online, the administration of the process has been very time-consuming, especially since each applicant must provide two references. Last year much time was spent matching the applications to their emailed references which arrived directly from the referee, and responding to queries from applicants as to whether or not we had received their documents.
This year we improved the process by integrating the references into the application form. The applicant completed pages 1 through 4 of the form, the first referee completed page 5, and the second referee completed page 6. This was process was entirely automated using logiforms.com
This is the first page of the form that the applicant sees.
And below is the part of the reference form (inside the form designer) that the referee completes and submits. They access this form via a specially crafted URL that uses the Respondent Update System to update an existing record. They are taken directly to the page of the form we want them to see:
After the applicant provides the email addresses of her two references Triggers are used to email the two referees and let them know that they have been asked to provide a reference. Each email contains a link back to the appropriate page of the reference form. Triggers were also used after each referee submitted their reference to notify both the applicant and the referee that the reference had been received. The trigger was also used to change a status field. Using logiforms triggers, a feature we could not find in competing products, made it possible for us to build all of this intelligence and workflow processing into our forms.
To help with preliminary filtering of the applications, a workflow was set up using the Publishing & Workflow Tools to allow the program director and other designated staff to see selected fields of the application, choose Yes/No/Maybe from a dropdown field and add their comments. Only applications that were complete and showed a status of both Reference1 and Reference2 Received display in the workflow window. Having this web portal to review submissions saved us countless hours and really helped to streamline our process.
We created this flow chart to show how the process works from end to end (click to enlarge)