How do I add fill-in fields to my form letters?

While having form letters that can go out to a large number of constituents is extremely useful, sometimes it's nice to include a little bit of personalization. You can accomplish this by including automatic merge fields or fill-in fields.

NOTE: Automatic merge fields take precedence over fill-in fields, so check the list of automatic fields first before creating your fill-ins.

First you will need to create a letter in the Letters module:

  1. Go to Letters.
  2. Click New.
  3. "Letter" will already be selected, so click Continue.
  4. Add a letter code and a description, then click Save and Continue.
  5. Click the Add a field link that appears next to "Fill-In Fields" toward the bottom of the form.
  6. Type in a name. (Do not use spaces or special characters when naming your fill-in field.) You will need to remember the name exactly as you've typed it for when you are editing the Word document.
  7. Chose the type of fill-in field. The default type is text. This will provide an empty fill-in field where staff can free type whatever information they're being prompted for. If you select list, you will be able to create a dropdown menu for staff to select from when completing the fill-in fields.
  8. Click Save.
  9. Repeat this process for each additional field.
  10. Click the Edit Letter button to open Word.

When Word opens, you'll see there are already merge fields for address and signature information. Click below the salutation and type the body of your letter.

  1. When you are ready to include a merge field, click on the Insert tab, and then select Quick Parts to see a small dropdown menu appear.
  2. Select Field.
  3. The Field Dialog will appear. On the right, you will see a list of possible field names, scroll down until you see "MergeField" and select it.
  4. The Field Dialog will update with your change. In the top center, you will see a field labeled "Field name:" Type in the field name exactly as it appears in the Letter Details screen.
  5. Then click OK.
  6. Your new merge field will be inserted into the document.
  7. Repeat steps 1-6 for each additional fill-in field.
  8. After completing the document, save and close Word.

Finish your form letter as you normally would by checking in the letter and changing the letter status from draft to final.

When you use your letter, you will be prompted for the fill-in fields. Complete the required information.

Whatever you select or type in will appear automatically within the body of your letter.


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