Generate Document of Record for Adaptive Forms

Overview

When a form is filled or submitted, you can keep a record of the form, in print or in document format. This record is referred as a Document of Record (DoR). It is a print-friendly copy of the submitted form. You can also refer the document of record for the information customers have filled at a later date or use the Document of Record to archive forms and content together in PDF Format.

Document of Record

To create a Document of Record, an XFA or Acroform based template is merged with data collected via an adaptive form. You can generate a Document of Record automatically or on-demand.
The on-demand option allows you to specify a custom XFA or Acroform based template to provide a custom appearance to your Document of Record.

You can:

Before you start

Before you start learn and ready the assets required for a Document of Record:

Base template: An XFA template (XDP file) created in AEM Designer or an Acrobat Form (AcroForm). Base template is used to specify styling and branding information for a Document of Record. Upload your XFA template (XDP file) to your AEM Forms instance before

Adaptive Form: An Adaptive Form for which the Document of Record is to be generated.

Generate an XFA-based Document of Record

Upload your XFA template (XDP file) to your AEM Forms instance. Perform the following steps to configure an Adaptive Form to use XFA template (XDP file) as template for Document of Record:

  1. In AEM author instance, click Forms > Forms and Documents.
  2. Select a form, and click Properties.
  3. In the Properties window, tap Form Model.
  4. On the Form Model tab, in the Select From drop-down, select Schema or None. You can also select a form model when you create a form.
  5. In the Document of Record Template Configuration section of the Form Model tab, select Associate Form Template as Document of Record Template. On selecting this option, all XFA template (XDP files) available on your machine are displayed. Select the appropriate file. Also, ensure same schema (data schema) is used for Adaptive Form and selected XFA template (XDP file).
  6. Click Done.

Your Adaptive Form is now configured to use an XDP file as template for Document of Record. The next steps is to bind Adaptive Form components with corresponding template fields.

Generate an Acroform-based Document of Record

Upload your Adobe Acrobat PDF (Acroform) to your AEM Forms instance. Perform the following steps to configure an Adaptive Form to use Adobe Acrobat PDF (Acroform) as template for Document of Record:

  1. In AEM author instance, click Forms > Forms and Documents.
  2. Select a form, and click Properties.
  3. In the Properties window, tap Form Model.
  4. On the Form Model tab, in the Select From drop-down, select Schema or None. You can also select a form model when you create a form.
  5. In the Document of Record Template Configuration section of the Form Model tab, select Associate Form Template as Document of Record Template. On selecting this option, all Acrobat PDF (Acroform) available on your machine are displayed. Select the appropriate file.
  6. Click Done.

Your Adaptive Form is now configured to use an Acroform as template for Document of Record. The next steps is to bind Adaptive Form components with corresponding template fields.

Automatically generate a Document of Record

When an Adaptive Form is configured to automatically generate a Document of Record, every time a form is changed, its Document of Record is updated immediately. For example, if a field is removed from an existing adaptive form, the corresponding field is also removed and is not visible in the Document of Record. There are many other advantages of automatically generating Document of Record. :

  • Form developers do not have to maintain data bindings manually. Auto-generated Document of Record takes care of data binding related updates.
  • Form developers do not have to manually hide fields which are marked exclude from Document of Record. Auto-generated Document of Records are pre-configured to exclude such fields.
  • Auto-generated Document of Record option saves time required to create a Form template for Document of Record.
  • Auto-generated Document of Record option allows you to use different styling and appearances using different base templates. It helps select best style and appearance for Document of Record for your organization. If you do not specify styling, system styles are set as default.
  • Auto-generated Document of Records ensure any change in form is immediately reflected in Document of Record.

Perform the following steps to configure an Adaptive Form to automatically generate a Document of Record:

  1. In AEM author instance, click Forms > Forms and Documents.
  2. Select a form, and click Properties.
  3. In the Properties window, tap Form Model.
  4. On the Form Model tab, in the Select From drop-down, select Schema or None. You can also select a form model when you create a form.
  5. In the Document of Record Template Configuration section of the Form Model tab, select Generate Document of Record.
  6. Click Done.

Bind Adaptive Form components with template fields

Bind Adaptive Form fields with template fields to display captured form data in corresponding Document of Record Field. To bind Adaptive Form components with corresponding document of record template fields:

  1. Open the Adaptive Form, configured to use a custom form template for editing.

  2. Select an Adaptive Form component and click open Configure Configure icon. It opens properties browser.

  3. In the properties browser, browse and select a field.

    • (For AcroForm template) the Document of Record Bind Reference field property.
    • (For XFA template) the Data Model Bind Reference property.
  4. Click Save.

You can use Send Email, AEM Workflow submit action in conjunction with Document of Record step, and other submit actions to receive a Document of Record.

Incremental updates to Document of Record template

Adaptive forms and corresponding document of record templates can evolve over the period of time. You can choose to add, remove, or modify fields to an Adaptive Form or a Document of Record template.

When you make changes to a Document of Record template and upload the changed Document of Record template to AEM Forms, the Adaptive Forms editor automatically detects the changed bindings and informs you about the adaptive form components that require new bindings. It allows you to make incremental updates to a Document of Record template.

For example, an Organization, We.Retail, has an AcroForm-based Document of Record template, we-retail-invoice.pdf. The template looks like the following:

Original Template

After using the template for some time, organization decides to rename invoice-number field to bill-number field and capture email address of buyers. A developer updates name of the invoice-number field and adds an email field to the template. He also creates a new version of template called we-retail-invoice-v2.pdf.

Updated Template

The developer uploads and applies to the updated template to the adaptive form. The adaptive form automatically detects and displays list of fields where binding has changed.

Binding Error

The form developer binds Adaptive Forms fields with corresponding Document of Record template.

Now, when the Adaptive Form is submitted an updated Document of Record of record is created.

Updated-

Key considerations when working with Document of Record

Keep in mind the following considerations and limitations when working on Document of Record for Adaptive Forms.

  • Document of Record templates do not support rich text. Therefore, any rich text in the static Adaptive Form or in the information filled in by the end user appears as plain text in the Document of Record.
  • Document fragments in an Adaptive Form do not appear in the Document of Record. However, Adaptive Form Fragments are supported.
  • Content binding in Document of Record generated for XML Schema based Adaptive Form is not supported.
  • Localized version of Document of Record is created on demand for a locale when the user requests the rendering of the Document of Record. Localization of Document of Record occurs along with localization of Adaptive Form.

Mapping of Adaptive Form elements

The following table describes Adaptive Form components and corresponding XFA components and if those appear in a Document of Record.

Fields

Adaptive Form component Corresponding XFA component Included by default in Document of Record Template? Notes
Button Button false
Check box Check Box true
Date picker Date/Time Field true
Drop-down list Drop-down List true
Scribble Signature Signature Scribble true
Numeric box Numeric Field true
Password box Password Field false
Radio Button Radio Button true
Text box Text Field true
Reset button Reset Button false
Submit button

Email Submit Button

HTTP Submit Button

false
Terms and conditions true
File Attachment false Not available in Document of Record template. Only Available in Document of Record through attachments.

Containers

Adaptive Form component Corresponding XFA component Notes
Panel
Subform
Repeatable panel maps to repeatable subform.

Static components

Adaptive Form component Corresponding XFA component Notes
Image Image The TextDraw and Image components, whether bound or unbound, always appear in the Document of Record for an XSD-based Adaptive Form, unless excluded using the Document of Record settings.
Text Text

Tables

The Adaptive Forms table components such as header, footer, and row map to corresponding XFA components. You can map repeatable panels to tables in Document of Record.

Base template of a Document of Record

Base template provides styling and appearance information to Document of Record. It allows you to customize default appearance of auto generated Document of Record. For example, you can use base template to add your company logo in the header and copyright information in the footer of the Document of Record.

The master page from base template is used as a master page for Document of Record template. The master page can have information such as page header, page footer, and page number that you can apply to Document of Record. You can apply such information to Document of Record using base template for auto generation of Document of Record. Using base template enables you to change default properties of fields.

Always follow Base template conventions when you design base template.

Base template conventions

A base template is used to define header, footer, styling, and appearance for a Document of Record. The header and footer can include information like the company logo and copyright text. The first master page in the base template is copied and used as a master page for the Document of Record, which contains header, footer, page number, or any other information that should appear across all pages in the Document of Record. If you use a base template which does not conform to base template conventions, the first master page from the base template is still used in Document of Record template. It is highly recommended that you design your base template as per its conventions, and use it for auto generation of Document of Record.

Master page conventions

  • In the base template, name the root subform as AF_METATEMPLATE and the master page as AF_MASTERPAGE.

  • The master page with the name AF_MASTERPAGE located under the AF_METATEMPLATE root subform is preferred for extracting header, footer, and styling information.

  • If AF_MASTERPAGE is absent, the first master page present in the base template is used.

Styling conventions for fields

  • To apply style on the fields in the Document of Record, the base template provides fields located in the AF_FIELDSSUBFORM subfrom under the AF_METATEMPLATE root subform.

  • The properties of these fields are applied to the fields in the Document of Record. These fields should follow the AF_<name of field in all caps>_XFO naming convention. For example, the field name for check box should be AF_CHECKBOX_XFO.

To create a base template, do the following in AEM Designer.

  1. Click File > New.

  2. Select the Based on a template option.

  3. Select the Forms - Document of Record category.

  4. Select DoR Base Template.

  5. Click Next and provide the required information.

  6. (Optional) Modify the styling and appearance of fields that you want to apply on the fields in the Document of Record.

  7. Save the form.

You can now use the saved form as a base template for Document of Record. Do not modify or remove any scripts present in the base template.

Modifying base template

  • If do not apply any styling over fields in base template, it is advisable to remove those fields from base template so any upgrades to base template are automatically picked up.
  • While modifying base template, do not remove, add, or modify scripts.

Strictly follow above mentioned conventions and instructions to design a base template.

Customize the branding information in Document of Record

While generating a Document of Record, you can change branding information for the Document of Record on the Document of Record tab. The Document of Record tab includes options such as logo, appearance, layout, header and footer, disclaimer, and whether or not you want to include unselected check box and radio button options.

To localize the branding information that you enter in the Document of Record tab, ensure the locale of the browser is set appropriately. To customize the branding information of Document of Record, perform the following steps:

  1. Select a panel (root panel) in the Document of Record and then tap configure.

  2. Tap dortab. The Document of Record tab appears.

  3. Select either the default template or a custom template for rendering the Document of Record. If you select the default template, a thumbnail preview of the Document of Record appears below the Template drop-down.

    brandingtemplate

    If you choose to select a custom template, browse a select an XDP on your AEM Forms server. If you want to use a template that is not already on your AEM Forms server, you need to first upload the XDP to your AEM Forms server.

  4. Based on whether you select a default or a custom template, some or all of the following properties appear in the Document of Record tab. Specify these appropriately:

    • Logo Image: You can either choose to use the logo image from the Adaptive Form, choose one from DAM, or upload one from your computer.
    • Form Title
    • Header Text
    • Disclaimer Label
    • Disclaimer
    • Disclaimer Text
    • Accent Color: The color in which header text and separator lines are rendered in the document or record PDF
    • Font Family: Font family of the text in the Document of Record PDF
    • For Check Box and Radio Button components, show only the selected values
    • Separator for multiple selected value(s)
    • Include form objects that are not bound to data model
    • Exclude hidden fields from the Document of Record
    • Hide description of panels
    NOTE

    If you are using an Adaptive Form template created with a verision of Designer prior to 6.3, for Accent Color and Font Family properties to work, ensure that the following is present in your Adaptive Form template under the root subform:

    <proto>
    <font typeface="Arial"/>
    <fill>
    <color value="4,166,203"/>
    </fill>
    <edge>
    <color value="4,166,203"/>
    </edge>
    </proto>
    
  5. To save the branding changes, tap Done.

Table and column layouts for panels in Document of Record

Your Adaptive Form may be a lengthy one with several form fields. You may not want to save a Document of Record as an exact copy of the Adaptive Form. Now you can choose a table or column layout for saving one or more Adaptive Form panels in the Document of Record PDF.

Before generating a Document of Record, in a panel’s settings, select Layout For The Document of Record for that panel as Table or Column. The fields in the panel get organized accordingly in the Document of Record.

Fields in a panel rendered in a table layout in the Document of Record

Fields in a panel rendered in a table layout in the Document of Record

Fields in a panel rendered in a column layout in the Document of Record

Fields in a panel rendered in a column layout in the Document of Record

Document of Record settings

Document of Record settings let you choose options you want to include in the Document of Record. For example, a bank accepts name, age, social security number, and phone number in a form. The form generates a bank account number, and branch details. You can choose to display only the name, social security number, bank account, and branch details in Document of Record.

The Document of Record settings of a component are available under its properties. To access the properties a component, select the component and click cmppr in the overlay. The properties are listed in the sidebar, and you can find the following settings in it.

Field level settings

  • Exclude From Document of Record: Setting the property true excludes the field from Document of Record. This is script-able property named excludeFromDoR. Its behavior depends on Exclude fields from DoR if hidden form level property.

  • Display panel as table: Setting the property displays panel as table in Document of Record if panel has less than 6 fields in it. Applicable for panel only.

  • Exclude title from Document of Record: Setting the property excludes title of the panel/table from Document of Record. Applicable for panel and table only.

  • Exclude description from Document of Record: Setting the property excludes description of the panel/table from Document of Record. Applicable for panel and table only.

Form level settings

  • Include unbound fields in DoR: Setting the property includes unbound fields from Schema based Adaptive Form in Document of Record. By default it is true.
  • Exclude fields from DoR if hidden: Setting the property overrides the behavior of “Exclude From Document of Record” field level property when it’s not true. If fields are hidden at the time of form submission, they will be excluded from Document of Record if the property is set true, provided “Exclude From Document of Record” property is not set.

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