When it comes to integrating any of our FileMaker integration solutions there are generally two main approaches a FileMaker developer can take:
- Linking – this involves using our solution’s file as a ‘interface’ or front-end file to your existing FileMaker file. This is a relatively quick way to get up and running – you relink the table occurrences to reference the matching tables in your existing FileMaker file (e.g. Contacts) and then update the layouts and add any new fields. You also need to update any field references in scripts and create any new value lists. Using this method you can be up and running in around 30 minutes.
- Embedding – this is the most complex and time consuming type of integration as it involves recreating the required functionality our solution’s file in your existing FileMaker solution. You need to complete the required tasks in a certain order – whilst most of the code can be copied across you will need to manually recreate table occurrences and relationships. This method can take many hours to complete depending on how much functionality from our solution you wish to move across to your FileMaker file.
We’ve always published Integration Guides that cover the embedding process and detail the steps that you should follow to incorporate functionality from one of our solution files in your existing FileMaker solution. Linking has always been more difficult to document as each of our customer’s solutions are different and the process will never be the same from one customer solution to another. To help get you started with linking and demonstrate the process we’ve put together a two part series that covers linking the FileMaker Contacts starter solution with our fmESignature Link (DocuSign Edition) solution.
In Part 1 of the Linking Guide we cover how you can link the fmESignature Link file to your existing FileMaker solution and use the fmESignature Link file to send eSignature Requests to your Contacts. We’ve included step-by-step instructions as well as a companion video that demonstrates the process which should take around 20-30 minutes to complete. We’re simply replacing any references to the Contacts table in the fmESignature Link file with references to your Contacts table. The Contacts starter solution has separate tables for Contact details such as name and company name and separate tables for storing email addresses, phone numbers and mailing addresses so it’s a good example for demonstrating how to incorporate data from multiple tables.
By the end of the process you will be able to use the fmESignature Link file to view your Contacts from within the fmESignature Link file and send an agreement to one or more of your Contacts.
In Part 2 of the Linking Guide we take this a step further and demonstrate how you can generate eSignature Requests from your FileMaker solution using PDFs created from layouts in your existing FileMaker file. We’ve added a new layout to the Contacts starter solution that contains the agreement we wish to send to and we’ve added some anchor tags to the layout to specify where we can our DocuSign tabs to appear. Once we’ve created a new Template in the fmESignature Link file for this new agreement we can then create a script in the Contacts starter solution that performs a number of tasks, including:
- captures the Contact/Recipient details such as their FileMaker Primary Key/ID and email address
- creates a PDF using the contract layout
- creates a new record in the Requests table in the fmESignature Link file and sets the Template ID to use and the PDF to send that you’ve previously created
- adds the Contacts as a recipient to this new Request
- takes the user to the newly created Request record so they can review this before sending out the agreement
The guide includes an example script that you can reference when implementing something similar in your FileMaker solution. Once again we’ve included a companion video that demonstrates the steps involved which should take around 30 minutes to complete.