By Megon VenterFri. 08 Dec. 20233min Read

How to Create a Fillable Form in Word

In this guide, we'll explore the various features and tools to show you how to create a fillable form in Word.
How to Create a Fillable Form in Word

Creating fillable forms in Microsoft Word has become an essential skill for streamlining document processes. Be sure to check out our guide on how to create a fillable document, or see our quick guide below for a list of choices to create forms.

Megon Venter
Blog Author - B2B SaaS Content Writer
Megon is a B2B SaaS Content Writer with 7 years of experience in content strategy and execution. Her expertise lies in the creation of document management tutorials and product comparisons.

How to Create a Fillable Form in Word


1. Activate the Developer Tab

To access the advanced form-building tools in Microsoft Word, you need to enable the Developer tab. Follow these steps:

    • Click on the "Word" tab.

    • Select "Preferences" at the bottom of the menu.

    • In the Word Options dialog box, choose "Customize Ribbon."

    • Check the "Developer" option and click "OK."

Image Source: Microsoft Word


2. Insert Form Fields

Form fields are the building blocks of your fillable form on a blank template. Here's how to insert them:

    • Click on the "Developer" tab.

    • In the Controls group, choose the type of form field you want (text box, check box, etc.).

    • Click where you want to insert the form field in your document.

Image Source: Microsoft Word

3. Interactive Forms with Drop-Down Lists

Enhance user interaction by adding drop-down lists to your form. Follow these steps:

    • Click on the "Developer" tab.

    • Choose "Drop-Down List" in the Controls group.

    • Click where you want the list, then select "Properties" to customize the options.


Image Source: Microsoft Word


Best Practice for Effective Fillable Forms

  • Keep it Simple: A clean and straightforward design enhances user experience.
  • Test Your Form: Before finalizing, test the form to ensure all fields work as intended.
  • Consistent Formatting: Maintain a consistent layout and formatting for a professional look.
  • Clear Instructions: Include clear instructions for users to fill out the form correctly. 

“As a content creator, having a reliable PDF reader and editor is crucial. PDF Reader Pro’s editing and conversion tools help me easily navigate tasks for every client.”
Megon Venter
B2B SaaS Content Writer
Source: LinkedIn

How to Create a Form on PDF Using Windows

Quickly and easily create fillable forms in PDF file format using our additional form tools on your Windows operating software.

Get Started with PDF Reader Pro Today!

Step 1: Click "Form" from the toolbar

Edit your current document or create a blank document file.

Image Source: PDF Reader Pro


Step 2: Use our Fillable PDF Form Creator

Select the type of Form filler element you would like to add to your PDF from the menu editing options. This includes list fields, electronic signatures and other types of list boxes.

Image Source: PDF Reader Pro


Step 3: Insert to Design PDF Form Fillable Text Fields

Once you've selected your Form filler element, insert it into your basic PDF document to create and editable PDF form.

Image Source: PDF Reader Pro


Step 4: Edit Your Document with Our Form Creation Tools

Edit your PDF Form file Appearance (like field size), and adjust Options in settings using our professional form builder properties.

Image Source: PDF Reader Pro


How to Create a Form on PDF Using Mac

Turn your PDF files into a fillable PDF form without using Adobe Acrobat on your Mac operating system, thanks to our simple user experience.


Step 1: Create Your PDF from Scratch

Image Source: PDF Reader Pro

Step 2: Select our Fillable PDF Form Creator

From the menu bar editing options, decide on your PDF text field type (such as list boxes or a list of values) and insert it onto the page by clicking and dragging.

Image Source: PDF Reader Pro

Step 3: Tweak Your Fillable Form as Needed

Change the Form Alignment and more with the properties tab on the top right.

"Before discovering PDF Reader Pro, I was merely grazing the surface of PDF tool capabilities. Now, I've achieved complete command over my documents, experiencing document management on an entirely new level."
Theodore Cipolla
B2B SaaS Content Marketer
Source: LinkedIn

You can also explore our recommendations for creating fillable forms without using Acrobat.

Fillable Forms: FAQ Section

These FAQs cover additional aspects of creating fillable forms, addressing security concerns, explaining software-specific features, and providing insights into advanced functionalities.

Can I create a fillable form without the Developer tab?

While the Developer tab provides advanced tools, you can still create basic forms using the "Legacy Tools" in the "Insert" tab.


Can I add calculations to my form fields?

Yes, you can use the "Calculate" option in the "Legacy Tools" to add simple calculations to numeric form fields.


How do I protect my form from accidental edits?

Utilize the "Restrict Editing" feature in the "Developer" tab to protect your form and control user input.

Can I use fillable forms for confidential information, and how can I ensure data security?

Yes, fillable forms can be used for confidential information. To enhance data security, consider password-protecting the form, encrypting the document, and controlling access permissions. Additionally, ensure that the platform or service you're using complies with relevant data protection regulations.


What's the difference between content controls and form fields in Microsoft Word?

Content controls and form fields in Microsoft Word serve similar purposes but have differences. Content controls offer more formatting options and are often used for rich text or plain text, while form fields are simpler and commonly used for checkboxes, text input, or drop-down lists. Your choice depends on the complexity and formatting requirements of your form.


Can I convert an existing non-fillable PDF into a fillable form?

Yes, you can convert a non-fillable PDF into a fillable form. Various online tools and software, including Adobe Acrobat DC, provide features for adding form fields to existing PDFs. Ensure that the converted form fields function correctly before distributing the document.


How do I create a fillable form that allows users to upload files or attachments?

To enable file uploads in fillable forms, consider using platforms or tools that support this feature. Online form builders like Google Forms or dedicated document creation tools often allow you to include file upload fields. Ensure that the file size limits and types are specified to meet your requirements.


Can I create a fillable form that automatically populates certain fields based on user input?

Yes, you can create dynamic fillable forms that auto-populate fields based on user input. Use features like calculated fields, conditional formatting, or scripting depending on the software or platform you're using. This is especially useful for forms where certain information is interconnected or depends on specific responses.


By following these steps and leveraging the various form-building tools in Microsoft Word, you can create fillable forms that are not only functional but also visually appealing. Whether you're designing a basic survey or a comprehensive application form, mastering the art of form creation in Word will undoubtedly boost your productivity and efficiency.

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