You can use Google Drive as an affordable system for managing documents. it’s a common scenario. When a Permission Form is signed, or a Leave Approval workflow completes, or a Purchase Order is received, you want to save the documents somewhere. Many companies still save them in email folders as attachments or manually drop them into a shared network drive. With  you can automatically upload them to Google Drive.

We’ve created a sample form and a shared Google Drive folder for demo purposes. Ironically, it’s a paper permission form that a parent must sign so students can use less paper and do things electronically

Click on the link above or on the image, fill in a student name, sign the form and enter an email address (don’t worry, it’s only used for this demo to email you the signed PDF. We won’t save it, it won’t appear on the PDF and it won’t be saved to Google Drive). When you submit, the form gets uploaded to Google Drive and saved in a folder with the student’s name so you can easily find it later. You’ll also get an email.

On This Page:

 

Step 1: Obtain the Google Account Access Token

If you do not have an access token for your Google Account, perform this one time step.

Step 2: Connect your own form or workflow to Google Drive.

  1. In Google Drive, create a parent folder that will hold all the submissions for this form.
  2. In the Form Designer, simply click on the Doc Actions (what happens to my data) wizard and select the “Save to Google Drive” option.



  3. In the wizard that appears, enter your credentials (see above for how to get an access token).
  4. Select the parent folder you created earlier in Step 1.
  5. For Submission folder, you may enter a fixed value (not recommended) or use a template. In this case, we have chosen the StudentsName control. For example, if you enter John Adams in the Student Name control, the submission documents will be stored in a subfolder called JohnAdams.

If you want to save a pdf of your form/flow to the Google folder, make sure you have Save PDF checked. An optional field that is used to name the pdfs displays. You can use templates in this field. For example, if you have a control called EmployeeName in your form, you can type {EmployeeName} into the PDF Name field and the pdf's in the Google folder will be named {EmployeeName}.pdf 

  • If you leave the PDF Name property blank, uses the flow/form name as the pdf file name. The pdf may not generate if the Form Name contains special characters. To avoid any issues, name your form/flows using characters that are suitable for filenames and explicitly set the pdf name in the form/flow using the same standard. Following the POSIX filename standard (A–Z a–z 0–9 . _ - ) will ensure it works. 
  • If a form does not reach the specified folder in your Google Drive successfully, notifies the tenant admin of the failure via an email. If a flow does not reach the specified folder in your Google drive successfully, the flow administrator(s) - if configured - and the tenant admin receive the email.  
     

     

Troubleshooting

"An unknown error has occurred" message

You may see the error message "An unknown error has occurred" when selecting your Google sheet from the dropdown after you log into the wizard with your Google account and access code. To prevent this, set the Share permission for your Google Sheet to private then run the Save to Google Spreadsheet wizard. Change the share permission to public once the wizard is completed. Click here for other reasons this error may occur.