#5 Form Themes – Suggested Background Images

By Neil Hobson on

After last week’s big news regarding Skype for Business Online, it’s time for something a little lighter with this particular nugget about Forms. One could even call it a ‘lite bite’ as it’s smaller than last week’s updates and contains plenty of food references.

Wait a minute…did I hear you say “What was the big news about Skype for Business Online last week?“. Perhaps I misheard. But if you did miss the announcement and my previous nugget, please head on over to here for last week’s big news.

Anyway, back to something a little lighter. I don’t know about you but I like Forms in Office 365. Forms make it very quick and easy to create a survey, poll or quiz. This is very useful in many areas, not least in surveys relating to Office 365. What better tool to use when adopting Office 365 than another Office 365 tool to conduct your surveys and gather feedback?

If you’ve fallen out of love with Forms and paused using it recently, perhaps it’s time to have another look. Forms has been getting better via incremental feature additions. Recently the branching capability of Forms has been improved as branching availability within sections of a form is being rolled out. This gives more flexibility in the structure and flow of the form. I’ve particularly liked the Forms integration available in Microsoft Teams, notably the quick poll feature when I want to gather opinions from within a team. It’s now great to see that it’s possible to create a quick poll in Outlook using the Forms Quick Poll add-in. Hop on over to the Microsoft support article for more details: Create a Quick Poll in Outlook.

A few weeks ago, Microsoft put out a preview of theme ideas for Forms. Theme ideas are, of course, ideas for the theme of your form – at least that’s how I read the headline announcement! If you’ve not used the feature before, you may see the theme ideas notification popup and the flash icon appear over the theme button after typing a title for your new form:

Image: Microsoft Forms popup

Notice I say you may see the theme ideas notification pop-up in one of the sentences above. That’s because it appears that not all forms may get a theme recommendation. Rather, it would seem that a suitable trigger word is required in the form title. I don’t know of a list of trigger words that Microsoft has worked into the system, but examples that I’ve tested include some common words that might be used in forms titles such as registration, satisfaction and quiz. 

Another example of a trigger word appears to be lunch, perhaps if you wanted to create a form for ordering lunch – which is arguably the most obvious reason for using the word lunch in the title of a form I suppose. Anyway, I digress. With the word lunch now typed and the enticing flash icon now displayed, clicking the theme button shows me a selection of food-centric background images as you can see below. This is all starting to make me feel hungry again.

Image: Microsoft Forms suggested themes

I quite like the look and colours of the top image so I select that. Hey presto! We now have a much more visually appealing form that will hopefully encourage people to respond. Otherwise they might miss lunch.

Image: Microsoft Forms themes in action

It’s great to see Microsoft adding incremental new features and enhancements to Forms, particularly those that hopefully increase engagement – like theme ideas.

If you can’t wait for next week’s nuggets, contact me using the form below, join one of our regular workshops and webinars or checkout one of our other blogs.

Or if you can’t wait to see me in action, join me for my webinar on Microsoft Information Protection on 7th August.

See you soon for some more chicken nuggets! Ooops – sorry, another food reference there.

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