Applies to version: 2020.1.x and above; author: Adrian Baszak
Setting up default values in form fields is one of the most basic and easy things that we can do to facilitate and improve the user experience of working with forms in the WEBCON BPS system. The following article describes the various methods used to configure the default values and examples of use.
Configuration of default values
In WEBCON BPS Designer Studio, the options related to default values are available in the form field configuration in the “General” tab.
Fig.1. Configuration of the default value settings
For each type of form field (except for charts and data table and rows), you can define the default value. You can use the values of other form fields, business rules, context variables, fixed values and data sources in the configuration. Setting the default value of the form field will take place:
The rest of the article also describes how to set the default value by using the form fields and picker fields.
Refreshing the default values
There are cases when the default value of the form field depends on the value of another form field and both are meant to filled out on the same step. In this situation, the default value cannot be set when the form is first loaded. To set the default value after completing another form field:
a) Check the “Set when refreshing default values” option – the default value will be set when another form field will force the default values to be refreshed
b) On the dependent form field you must check the “Value will cause default values to be refreshed” option – when this option is enabled that after changing the form field value:
An example configuration will be presented in the next chapter.
Configuration of default value in the picker fields
The default value in the picker fields should be set in the ID#Name format where “ID” and “Name” are compatible with the configuration of the choice field. This format is used for simple dictionaries (e.g. currency or bank account number form field). The value set in this way is not checked in the data source – the form is loaded quicker, but on the other hand it is possible to set a value that does not belong to the data source. Also, if the choice field sets other fields – the data source will be searched to download appropriate values.
You can set the value by specifying the ID that uniquely identifies the row/entry from the data source. To correctly complete the choice field, the given value must be found in one of the data source columns (those for which the search option was selected in the advanced configuration of the form field).
Fig. 2. Configuration of searching in the choice field. If the default value will not be set in the ID#Name format – the value will be searched in the WDF_ID, Name and externalID columns
This approach, unlike to the previous one, will always search the data source. The more column will be searched, the greater will be the impact on form loading time. Using only the identifier allows to enter the value other than the choice field ID – e.g. NIP or vendor ID from an external system. It is also insensitive to display name changes or name format required for fields that support multilingual names.
The default value should not be set by specifying the display name or their fragment. It can cause incorrect matching of values in the data source, if this value matches more than one record in the dictionary.
Fig. 3. An example of correct and incorrect configuration of the default value
If the default value is to be set only at the selected step (instead of first one where the form field will be visible), add the appropriate condition in the rule (it is recommended for facilitating and maintaining the configuration) or break inheritance of the form field configuration in the form settings on the selected step.
Fig. 4. Configuration of the default value set on the selected step by using IF rule
Fig. 5. Configuration of the default value set on the selected step via break inheritance of the form field configuration
To set the default value, you can also use the form rules related to the change of the form field value. This solution is useful when the form fields are dynamically hidden or shown, or when the default value is to be refreshed when the value of the form field is changed.
Setting the default value via choice field
The default value of form field can also be set after selecting the value in the choice field. Values from the selected columns can be mapped to the form fields.
Good practices – efficiency and maintenance
To optimize the work of the form fields (e.g. quick time of page loading) and to facilitate maintenance of correct configuration:
a) Minimize the number of the form fields whose value change refreshes the default values
b) Minimize the number of form fields whose default value is set after changing the values of another form fields
c) Minimize the number of default values downloaded from data sources:
d) In some cases, the setting of the default values can be replaced by actions set to trigger on a path if:
This chapter describes the different methods to set the default value by using a simple cost invoice form.
Fig. 6. An example of form with the default values
Fig. 7. Configuration of the default value of the “Created by” and “Created date” form fields
Fig. 8. The default value of the “Invoice type” form field
Fig. 9. The configuration of refreshing the default values by changing the value in the “Invoice date” form field
Fig. 10. The default value in the “Currency” form field
Fig. 11. Configuration of the default value of the “Payment date” field
It is important that the default value will only be completed if “Payment date” is empty. To complete the default value whenever you change the “Invoice date” value, you must add the form rule to change the form field value instead of the above configuration.
Fig. 12. Configuration of the default value of the “Payment date” field by using the form rule on the “Invoice date” value change
Fig. 13. Advanced configuration of the “Supplier name” field. Values from the data source column (Source column) will be entered to the appropriate form fields (Target fields)
In order for the default value in the “Bank account number” field to change after selecting the vendor, the form rule has been configured to change the value in the “Supplier Name” field, which will remove the current value from the “Bank account number” field.
Fig. 14. Removing the value from the “Bank account number” field
Fig. 15. Configuration of the default value in the “Bank account number” field
There are a lot methods for setting the default values of form fields and each of them has its use in different scenarios. When used correctly, default values can make the form user-friendly by reducing the number of inputs a user must provide and making their work as straightforward as possible. However, its is important to remember that the configuration under the hood should also be kept as simple and efficient as possible, so that it is easier to reconfigure in the future and so that it does not negatively impact loading times.