Forms are the part of Access that users encounter when entering data. You need to design your Access forms in a way that is easy for users to understand and for Access to interpret.
Creating forms is one of the easiest components of Microsoft Access. That does not mean you can get by without planning them carefully when you create your database. Like every other component, the form needs to be clear.
If you find that your forms need a lot of work or if they are causing serious data problems, consult an expert. They can help you repair Access problems with your form. They can also make recommendations to improve your existing forms.
1.Benefits of Planning
Because people are more likely to inadequately plan for forms, this article provides a few incentives. A form that is well thought out prior to release has several distinct advantages.
- Data is more accurate.
- You will need to make fewer revisions to make them clearer.
- Your data will be cleaner.
- Developers won’t have to update other components.
The bottom line is to plan first. Once you know what data you need from the form, make sure the form clearly details what is needed.
2.A Clear Look
Another important consideration is the way the form looks. From the color to the font, it needs to be easy to look at. If you have a form that has a red background with orange font, people will have a much harder time adding data.
People who use the form are going to decide how serious to take it based on the way it looks. Make sure to select a color that does not detract from the data you need. Make the font something that is easy to read. If possible, avoid underline and italics. They tend to pull attention away from where it is needed, the addition of information.
3.Layout and Grouping
The best way to make it clear what is needed is to line up related information. All name components should be grouped together. All address information should be in the same area. By making it easy to tab over to the next related field, you keep your users focused on data entry.
Make sure that users can tab when working in the form. This is the primary reason why grouping works. If a user has to mouse to the next field, that person’s focus will be broken.
4.Use Buttons Wisely
Users are accustomed to buttons. Once all of the hard work is done, you click a button to move to the next screen. From the second screen on, there is a back button too. Buttons provide direction (often literally) in how to proceed.
Your buttons need to be easy to find. They should also be very clearly marked so there is no question what each button does. Until you are familiar with the program, stick with the default buttons.
The flow of the form should be easy to follow, but users should be able to move to specific areas at will. Sometimes they will need to leave a field blank and return to it later. Other times, they may realize they entered information incorrectly. Your database needs to be easy to navigate. For any navigation between areas that you don’t want, make sure an error text box is established to warn users why they can’t do something.
Victor Ren is a data recovery expert in DataNumen, Inc., which is the world leader in data recovery technologies, including repair xls file and word recovery software products. For more information visit www.datanumen.com