Since the release of Workspace in 2015, Grants.gov has been hard at work integrating new features for applicants submitting federal grant applications.
To help you master the most important of these enhancements, we have developed a series of lessons that will turn you into a Workspace Wizard faster than you can say, “hocus-pocus, grant me focus.”
So, are you ready to learn the ways of the Workspace Wizard? Lesson 1 is especially aimed at teams of applicants who collaborate on a single federal grant application.
In Workspace, applicants have a choice as to which type of form they want to complete – either PDF forms or online webforms.
For applicants who work collaboratively, using webforms provides a number of advantages:
- No Adobe Reader software is needed: With webforms, fields are filled in within a web browser window – there is no need to download or update Adobe Reader. When completing PDF forms, all applicants should ensure they all have the same version of Adobe Reader on their individual computers.
- Data is always stored in the workspace: With webforms, data is saved to the workspace automatically every five minutes – or every time you click the Save button. When PDF forms are used, on the other hand, they must be saved locally; only when they are uploaded back to the workspace is the form data transferred.
- Navigating through long forms is a snap: Webforms have a left navigation menu that makes jumping between lots of fields extremely easy. You will spend far less time scrolling in webforms compared to their PDF counterparts.
- Save time when updating webform fields: Making changes to a saved form in Workspace goes much faster when you’re using webforms; just access the form with a single click, revise the data field, and click Save. With PDF forms, every revision requires downloading and opening the file locally before saving and uploading the file back into your workspace.
Ways of the Wizard: Switching to Webforms
So, how easy is it to switch from PDF forms to webforms? It’s so very easy.
Let’s say you have already started working on the SF-424 form, but now you want to switch over to webforms.
- Simply click on the webform link. That’s it. All of the data you have entered into the SF-424 so far will automatically populate on the webform (assuming you have uploaded the PDF version back into the workspace).
- Now continue filling out the webform in your browser window.
- When you need to move onto another task, click Save. Then click Close.
- You will be returned to your workspace, and all of your form data will be saved and ready for another teammate – or yourself – to access at a later time.
- After you finish the SF-424 form, click the Webform link associated with any other form in your workspace. Core data from the SF-424 will automatically populate across the remaining forms.
- Complete the remaining forms in any order, using webforms whenever possible.
Help your organization switch to webforms, and – before you know it (after a few more lessons, of course) – your colleagues will be calling you a Workspace Wizard.
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3 thoughts on “Become a Workspace Wizard – Lesson 1: Collaborate Using Webforms”
It sounds great we will study the process and give it a try thanks.
Is there a downloadable Workplace Guide like the SF424 Guide available?
Hi Cheryl, we have an Online User Guide that covers all aspects of applying using Grants.gov Workspace. You can browse the help articles here: https://www.grants.gov/help/html/help/GetStarted/Get_Started.htm Within every workspace, there are also Help links that go directly to a relevant help article. Look for the ? icons.
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