Transferring your Forms when you leave

Are you leaving the organization? In an upcoming post I will write about everything you will have to think of, but for now I would like to focus on what to do with your Forms.

Before you leave

As mentioned earlier, a Form is by default owned by the person who has created it. You can share it with someone, but that person will not be the owner. So if your account gets deleted, your Form and all its content will be deleted as well.
Please be a nice colleague and do the following before you leave. This will save your colleagues and manager, AND your Microsoft365 admin, a lot of hassle. 🙂 Of course your exact actions will depend on the “status” of the Form.

1. Forms that are still actively in use

You can move these to a Group (Team site) which will transfer the ownership to the Group.

  • Make sure you have a Group or Team site with the people who will be responsible for the Form after you have left
  • Move the Form to the Group/Team
    • Open your Forms landing page
    • Click the … on the Form to be moved
    • You will get a popup with the groups you are a member of
    • Select the correct one and click Move
    • Your Form will now be owned by the Group/Team
  • You will see a message about the move, and your name will be replaced with the Group name
  • All people whom you have shared the Form with earlier, will keep their permissions and see the Form on their Forms page
  • A new folder “Apps” will be created in the Document library, with the subfolders, but pictures uploaded before the move, will still live in your OneDrive. Move them to the correct folder in the document library
  • You can use the Form in your Team site by adding it as a Tab
Moving a Form. Please note that this form is owned by me
After moving, there is a message, your name will be replaced with the name of the group and you will also be unable to move it again.

2. Forms that are not currently active, but may be re-used later

Do you have a recurring survey that may be re-used later?

a. You can share it as a Template. The new owner can then create a new Form from your template and it will be theirs. Check this post on how to do that.

b. You can move it to a Group or Teamsite, see above.

3. Forms that have expired

Forms that have served their purpose can be left as they are.
If those Forms have File Uploads that you want to keep, please move the files to a Team/SharePoint site.
You may want to export the Excel file and store that in a Team/SharePoint site, for future reference.

4. Uploaded files

Did your Form(s) have a “File Upload” question? The files live in your OneDrive in a dedicated folder called “Apps”. (See my earlier post on the folders that are created by Microsoft365).

Please check your OneDrive and move the images manually to the new site. Files uploaded after the move will be uploaded to the Team/SharePoint site. (Again, in a folder called “Apps”)

After moving the Form, any File Uploads will be stored in the dedicated folder in the SharePoint site.

After you have left

Until your account has been deleted, (in our organization 14 days after your official leaving date), nobody can do anything. I recently was in this situation, and it was very annoying that the Form could not be used until that time had passed.
When your account has been deleted, an admin has 30 days to dive into the system and move any Forms that your organization wants to keep, to a Group/Team site, following these instructions (under the heading: Form Ownership Transfer). Just make sure your admin account has a license and that there is an appropriate Group/Teamsite.

Your manager will have 30 days ( or longer, depending on system settings) to move your File Uploads to a shared location.

I think you will understand now why I asked to do it before you leave the organization, right? 🙂 All the best in your new role!

Update May 29, 2021:

On LinkedIn, Deb Walthers suggested to use a service account for creating the Forms that need to stay. That is an excellent suggestion if you know beforehand that this will be a long-term Form. In real life, I find that not everyone knows the lifespan of their Form when they create it.
I like the fact that Forms are completely democratic and can be created and adjusted by everyone in the organization. Using a service account (which I assume are owned by IT, at least in my organization) would put ownership in the hands of IT. But it would definitely be a good option for long-term and organization-wide Forms.

2 thoughts on “Transferring your Forms when you leave

  1. Stefan Späth May 25, 2021 / 10:19 am

    Hello Ellen, thanks for that article. I hope a lot of people remember it, when this situation occurs. Companies that strongly rely on M365 should consider having an offboarding process with something like ‘Please move all your forms to a responsible persion’.
    I am looking forward to ‘In an upcoming post I will write about everything you will have to think of’ 🙂
    Stefan

    • Ellen van Aken May 25, 2021 / 12:30 pm

      Thank you, Stefan! I am not too happy with the current trend that Microsoft stores a lot of things on people’s OneDrive, as this will be an issue when they leave.
      So please be patient, that article is currently being created and I hope it will help prevent problems.
      Best regards, Ellen

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