6 ways to use JotForm for virtual holiday gatherings

There’s nothing quite like the few weeks leading up to the new year.

Bright lights and banners adorn main thoroughfares. Large Douglas firs — fake and real — are erected. Stores are filled with holiday music, elaborate holiday displays, and awe-inspiring, winter-themed decor to get everyone into that festive state of mind.

Source: Giphy

Apart from completing tasks and closing out projects for the year, organizations and teams of all sizes usually get into the holiday spirit by planning office parties, holding contests, donning festive outfits, and decorating every inch of the office.

Source: Giphy

But something is undeniably different this year.

The COVID-19 pandemic has given rise to widespread remote work and separated us like never before.

At a time when people traditionally gather and celebrate the holiday season together, many of us have been told to change our plans and fight the pent-up urge to visit friends and extended family.

To be sure, the holiday season will look and feel very different this year, but that doesn’t mean your organization should forgo team-building activities and valuable opportunities to bring everyone together — even if it is from a distance.

While JotForm can create anything from online payment forms to complex online quizzes, the easiest online form builder can also help you host fun and engaging virtual gatherings that’ll get your colleagues into the holiday spirit.

From festive contests and trivia games to donation drives and gift giving, JotForm has the flexibility and tools you need to bring everyone closer and spread some well-deserved holiday cheer.

Set up a virtual gathering with JotForm’s Zoom integration

Holiday parties are fun affairs that allow people to unwind and form closer bonds with the people who work with them.

But actually planning a soiree is another story.

Before the merrymaking begins, you need to get a head count of attendees, reserve a physical space for the gathering, come up with a list of fun activities, and coordinate food and drinks for everyone.

Doing this can be especially challenging when you have to stick to a budget and juggle other tasks at work.

Although your party planning list may be a little shorter this year, you still need to figure out who’s attending and ensure that everyone ends up in the same virtual space.

JotForm’s integration with Zoom can streamline this process by automatically registering people for your organization’s virtual gathering when they fill out your customizable online holiday party invitation form.

If you want to get a head start on the process or simply gather some ideas for your own registration form, JotForm has a number of virtual event form templates you can modify to match your organization’s needs.

You can also use JotForm’s form-building capabilities and robust design tools to gather feedback from colleagues and solicit ideas before planning this year’s festivities.

JotForm even enables you to control how your form is shared, who can access it, what they can do with it, and how long their access should last. You can modify these options at any time by logging into JotForm and adjusting your form’s settings.

Once you’ve built an event registration form, connect it to JotForm’s Zoom integration and specify whether colleagues should be added to a specific webinar or meeting that has already been created in Zoom.

You can also set up customizable notification and autoresponder emails that’ll provide you and your colleagues or employees with a copy of their submitted form information.

Zoom will automatically send partygoers instructions about how to join your organization’s virtual holiday gathering.

Pro Tip

JotForm’s Zoom integration will only work if registration is enabled and required for the Zoom meeting or webinar. A person’s first and last name and email address are also required for the Zoom integration to work properly, so be sure to include those fields in your registration form. Check out our blog to learn more about how to host a webinar on Zoom, how to set up a Zoom meeting, and the difference between a Zoom webinar and meeting.

Use trivia forms to play fun holiday games

Ever been to a party where there aren’t many opportunities to meet new people?

Parties like these aren’t just awkward and boring; they can be a real downer for introverts and newcomers.

Trivia games are great virtual team icebreakers that can help everyone break out of their shell, learn something new about each other, and show off their knowledge on a wide range of subjects, from movies and music to geography and current events.

As a versatile yet robust online form builder, JotForm has the flexibility you need to create interactive and engaging quizzes that can be used for a variety of trivia topics.

If you need a little inspiration, check out our quiz template gallery to see how our talented copywriters used JotForm to manage a virtual trivia night.

Give back and rally around a cause with donation forms

Sharing is a sign of caring, and for many organizations, the holiday season is the best time to help other people who may need a little extra cheer this time of year.

Whether it’s buying gifts on a family’s wish list or collecting canned goods for people who could use an extra hand, thoughtful acts of kindness, generosity, and goodwill can build rapport among colleagues.

Although donation drives in the office may not be on your list of holiday festivities this year, JotForm’s online forms can still help your organization give back to the community, work toward a common goal, and build camaraderie.

Rather than collecting food, gifts, and other tangible donations, your organization can match monetary donations — up to a certain amount — made by employees to a specific nonprofit of your choice or theirs.

Along with collecting details from employees about the nonprofit they’re supporting, you can add a file upload field to an online donation form so that they can provide proof of their charitable contribution.

Once employees fill out the online donation form, JotForm can send them a customizable autoresponder email with all of their submitted information.

You can then use JotForm Tables to track and analyze donations from individual employees. Much like JotForm’s online forms, you can share this customizable team collaboration workspace with colleagues and control their access to it.

JotForm Tables can also come in handy if you’re holding a fundraising contest. You can add new table views to your workspace that break down contributions by team or department. Meanwhile, JotForm Tables’s sorting feature can help you identify top fundraisers within the company.

JotForm Tables can even automatically calculate the amount of money raised by individual teams and your organization as a whole. Just add a column, and use JotForm’s formula feature to locate and tally up entries from other tables.

You can get a better view of the files that colleagues or employees upload to an online donation form by adding an uploads view tab to your workspace. This enables you to quickly view and validate someone’s charitable contribution without going through the hassle of downloading files and opening them in another application.

If you need to share the results of your company’s online fundraising drive, JotForm Tables can turn all of your collected data into an attractive, yet accurate report in a matter of seconds. All you need to do is add a report view tab to your workspace and connect it to your online donation form.

Collect, organize, and track entries for holiday contests

Nothing lightens the mood in a staid office more than festive contests that allow everyone to let their hair down, flex their creative muscles, and get to know each other a little better.

From ugly sweater contests to white elephant gift exchanges, fun games enable your colleagues to engage in some friendly competition and spend quality time with the office mates they don’t know very well.

Even though traditional contests in the office may be out of the question this year, JotForm can still help you incorporate fun contests into your virtual holiday gatherings.

Since colleagues may be sequestered at home with friends, roommates, or family members, you could come up with activities that enable everyone in their social bubble to get creative, such as nontraditional tree or house decoration, or gingerbread house-making contests.

Once your colleagues are ready to share their creation, they can fill out your customizable holiday contest form and upload a photo of their masterpiece.

As contest entries arrive, you can keep track of all this information in JotForm Tables and add a new file upload tab to get a better view of the submitted images. You can even add new table views to organize entries by team or department.

When the time comes to review all of the entries, you can easily share your workspace with the judges, yet retain control over what they can do with the information and how long they can access it.

You can also add a new column within a table — without altering any of the submitted form information — so judges can make comments about specific entries.

Since you can share a workspace with colleagues and control their access to it, everyone is able to compare notes in real time and admire each other’s work.

Gather employee feedback, analyze it, and share strategies

It probably goes without saying that 2020 was filled with a lot of ups, downs, and everything in between.

The COVID-19 pandemic hasn’t just upended traditional holiday plans this year; it has changed the way people interact with each other, get work done, and do business. So there’s a good chance your colleagues probably have a lot on their minds.

JotForm’s online survey forms can help you gather constructive feedback about what your colleagues need and how they’re doing.

Your survey — anonymous or not — can ask colleagues about the challenges they faced over the past year, the goals they see for the company, and what can be done to address their concerns.

As responses trickle in, JotForm Report Builder can help you analyze incoming feedback; produce stunning reports with customizable graphs and charts; and quickly share these findings with decision-makers in your organization.

Give prizes or gifts to employees

Feeling like you’re part of a strong, tight-knit team within a supportive organization is rewarding.

After going through a rough year together, a virtual holiday gathering provides the perfect opportunity to rekindle and reinforce those bonds of fellowship — even if it’s from a distance.

For some organizations, the holiday season is also a time to thank employees with a small token of appreciation.

Whether you’re rewarding colleagues who won a holiday contest or distributing a gift to everyone, JotForm’s robust online forms can help.

Once you create a customizable gift request form and share it with your colleagues, JotForm Tables can streamline the gift distribution process by keeping their preferences and contact information organized.

Conclusion

We may be better apart than together for the time being, but that doesn’t mean your organization should forgo holiday celebrations.

Though the pandemic has put a damper on traditional ugly sweater contests, potluck lunches, and other fun team-building activities, JotForm can help you organize a virtual holiday gathering that’s bound to bring everyone closer — albeit over a video call.

With JotForm’s suite of services, including JotForm Tables and JotForm Report Builder, you don’t have to jump through hoops just to plan a fun event.

Since the holiday season is all about expressing gratitude, we want to thank you for turning to JotForm as your data collection, project management, and team collaboration solution of choice.

Here’s to a new year full of promise, hope, and even better days ahead.

This article is originally published on Dec 14, 2020, and updated on Jan 04, 2021.
AUTHOR
Darin is a content writer at JotForm. He is passionate about disrupting perceptions, solving problems, and helping people be more productive with the easiest online form builder. Outside of the office, he is a rush-hour straphanger, adventure seeker, coffee drinker, and frequent traveler. You can contact Darin through his contact form.

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