Design a form

You can design data entry and display forms to suit your needs. The Form Builder's Elements tab lets you add or remove form fields and set their order and layout. To access the Form Builder, click the Customize this form link in the Page bar when you're displaying a form.

Adding, positioning, & removing fields:

Whether you're creating or editing a form, the Elements tab usually displays with some of your fields already listed.

Each field name represents a drop-down. At the bottom of the list of fields, are blank drop-down fields that all say Make a selection.

To add a field:

Click one of the drop-downs and select the field you want to appear on your form (fields already on the form are grayed out in the list). To add a field in between two fields, select the field just below the spot where you want to insert the new field. At the bottom of the list, click Insert. Quickbase inserts a Make a selection drop-down above the field you chose. Click the drop-down and select the field you want to add.

Tip: You don't need to be in the Form Builder to add a field. You can create a field and add it to your form at the same time. On the form itself, right-click the field above where you want to insert the new field. Within the menu that appears, select Add a field after this one.

To remove a field:

In the Form Builder, select the field you want to remove. At the bottom of the list, click the Remove button.

Tip: You can also select Remove this field from this form on the right-click menu shown above.

To position a field:

Select the field and select the Up or Down arrow at the bottom of the fields list to move the field. Quickbase moves a field one slot at a time. If you want a field to display on the same line as the field above it, select the Same Row checkbox.

Note: The Same Row setting is not applicable for the Quickbase mobile app or in a web browser on a mobile device; each field appears on a separate row in the form.

You can move multiple fields together as a group.

Adding tabs:

Tabs focus your user's attention and help them find key information on your forms. You can create tabs for each kind of data you want users to enter, such as projects, tasks, or budget, and add fields above tabs to give context to your users when they are adding and editing records. For example, you could opt to show the name, title, and phone number of a contact above the tabs where users enter basic company information and activities for that contact.

You can dynamically hide or show tabs based on how users interact with your form using form rules.

Note: Tabs appear in a single column in the Quickbase mobile app, or in a web browser on a mobile device.

To add tabs:

  1. Click any Make a selection dropdown and choose Tab.
  2. In Tab Properties, set the tab label.
  3. If you want to choose a color for each tab, select Set tab color and use the color picker that appears. The tab color appears as an underline beneath the tab label.

Adding section headings:

Section headings divide a form visually and can be used instead of or along with Tabs to focus users' attention. For example, your Project Overview Tab could have a section on Project Information and one for Project Status. To add Section Headings:

  1. Click any Make a selection drop-down and choose Section heading.
  2. Quickbase displays a Section heading text box in the pane to the right of the field list. Use this box to type in the heading text. Insert and move a Section Heading as you would any other field.
  3. To set a section as collapsed by default, select the Collapse this section by default checkbox on the Section Heading properties. If a Section Heading does not contain text, it can't be collapsed.

Section Headings with text are collapsible. Users can click the icon to the left of the Section Heading to expand or collapse the section.

Tip: You can insert horizontal lines to separate the sections on your forms. To do so, click the Properties tab and turn on the Display horizontal rules between sections checkbox.

Adding instructional text

Provide directions for your user or highlight key information by adding text to your form. The Make a selection drop-down features a selection called Text When you choose Text, Quickbase displays a large box in the pane to the right of the field list. Use this box to type in whatever text you want to display.

If you want to format your text, you can insert certain HTML tags, including basic formatting options like bold and italic, and links. Select the HTML (Limited) checkbox below the text box. See the list below for available HTML tags:

Tag meaning








format text within paragraph


line break


hypertext link






table row


table cell


table heading cell

Configuring a field's appearance and behavior

When you select a field in the list, Quickbase displays some configuration options in the pane on the right.

All fields have the following options:

  • Use Alternate Label Text. Select this option if you want to create a custom label for the field instead of the field name.

  • Read-only (even when used for data-entry). Select this option to prohibit users from entering any data in the field (even on an add or edit form). Data displays in the field, but users can't modify it.

  • Required (when used for data-entry using this form). Select this option to require users to complete a particular field. A red asterisk next to the field, so users know that it's required and the form cannot be saved unless this field is populated.

For Address fields only: 

  • Hide Map. By default, Address fields on forms display with a thumbnail map showing the address. Select Hide map to hide the display.

For Text - Multiple-choice fields only:

  • Display choices as radio buttons (instead of a drop-down). By default, choices in Text - Multiple-choice fields display in a drop-down, as shown below:

    If you choose Display choices as radio buttons (instead of a dropdown), you can specify that these choices appear as radio buttons on the form instead, as shown below.

    Tip: If you want to omit the “None of the above” radio choice, make sure to select Required for the field. This can be helpful when adding a radio button where you want to ensure specific choices, such as a Yes/No radio button.

    Note: If you use this option, application users will not have the ability to add a new choice to the multiple choice field, regardless of whether the field's properties specify that users should be able to add new choices.

Positioning Field Labels

You can only position form field labels if you have at least one Section Heading on your form. If you don't want section heading text to appear in your form, you can still create one, but leave the box blank.

When you add a section heading, you can select where field labels display in the Field labels in this section appear: section. Select Above fields, to the right of fields or to the left of fields instead.

Tip: If you place field labels to the left of fields, you may want to make those labels wrap. This ensures that long labels won't force your form to widen beyond the width of the browser window. To do so, click the Properties tab and select Allow field labels to wrap.

Configuring a reference field's drop-down

If you have multiple tables in your application, and they're related to each other, your form may contain a reference field. When reference fields appear on your form, they display as drop-downs from which users can select a record in a related parent table. The format of the choices that appear here are automatically controlled by the record picker.

Your record picker can be based on one of three things:

  • The default record picker – an advanced setting on the parent table

  • A report in the parent table that you select in form properties. This report will determine how records display in the picker and provides more information to identify these records.

  • A lookup field in the child table that you select in form properties. This field can be used in place of the key field to identify records on the parent table. More about Customizing the type-ahead search picker for parent records.

Embedding a report

You may want to embed a list of related records on a form. For example, a project record can display the list of tasks related to that project. More about embedding reports.

Note: To ensure you see the records you expect, make sure the report you insert has no matching criteria set. You can view or edit the report by selecting the report, then selecting the report link.

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