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The Essential Guide to Document Generation in Salesforce

A document generation App in Salesforce allows you to generate rich format documents by using data from Salesforce and external sources to create MS Office, PDF or HTML documents based on templates.

But what do you need to know before buying such App? We explain in this article how to power up your Salesforce experience with document generation and what to look for when choosing a solution.

What’s document generation?

In brief, document generation allows you to create and automate documents in Salesforce by combining data from different sources to generate a Word, Excel, PowerPoint, PDF or HTML document based on a template.

It can be used for a variety of purposes from creating a quote or offer to automating a complex report or staff scheduling for example. The benefits of document generation in Salesforce are the ease of access to always-up-to-date documents, the ability to merge data from these different sources into templates and the fast speed at which great looking documents can be produced.

Combine Salesforce and external data

A document generation App, such as Documill Dynamo, extracts data from Salesforce to create documents. But you’re not limited to using the data stored in Salesforce only as it also merges dynamic data from external data sources onto a template bringing you endless possibilities with documents. You can say goodbye to manual errors in your documentation and having different versions stored in multiple places.

Having customer data  scattered in different clouds possess a challenge when you need to create documentation that uses data from different sources. When buying a Salesforce Document Generation App, you should, at least, check that the App integrates with the data storages you currently use. The more storages that can be integrated the better as this will future proof your solution and ensure that the generated documents may contain data from any of your current and future data storages.

Document types & templates

Whether you’re looking to create a proposal, contract or a package of documents, a document generation App in Salesforce offers you the ability to have the output in a limitless number of document types and combinations.

Maybe you need an editable Word based contract template and a PDF terms and conditions, or maybe you don’t use the MS Office package and need an HTML-based sales proposal and a PDF to go with it. This is all made possible with a document generation App such as Documill Dynamo.

Again, you should make sure that the available document formats match your needs. If you’re a Mac or Linux user or don’t have access to MS office, for example, you’ll benefit from the ability to generate HTML-based documents.

When it comes to templates, the ease of design should be at the centre of the App as this will give more people at your organisation the means to design beautiful document templates. Also, the ability to filter different templates is important when you have a variety of document types/templates in order for your team to be able to choose the correct template quickly. So, check out the possibilities with template design to make sure your entire team can benefit from the investment in a document generation App.

Collaboration and sharing capabilities

Does your team or customers need to interact with the generated documents or are the documents mainly meant for static use? The interaction capabilities vary significantly from one document generation App to another so you should check that your chosen App meets your criteria.

The ability to edit fields in a shared document, add comments or reject/Approve a document may well be on your list of needed capabilities. If you’re looking for advanced editing capabilities, Documill Dynamo offers powerful interaction and collaboration functionality from a text editor to commenting and rejecting/Approving the document in a single click shortening your sales cycle and empowering your customers to edit the required fields in a document.

Learn how Documill Dynamo can help your business to produce great looking documents by booking a demo.

What kind of documents do you use?

Your choice of a document generation App in Salesforce depends largely on your document output requirements. The more complex your needs are, the more carefully you should investigate the possibilities of the different options.

Some Apps, such as Documill Dynamo, will be able to output data from a Salesforce field and customise it into a complicated layout such as a list of products grouped by opportunities, where you can run a calculation of a total sum for each opportunity. As a general rule, the more complex the requirements, the better off you are talking to the App provider before making a decision. It’s also a good idea to request a proof-of-concept to really see how well an App can work for you.

Top ways to use document generation

Document generation not only automates the process of business critical documents such as contracts, proposals and offers but it also allows you to design the output in a way that fully reflects your brand.

Here are the top five ways how document automation in Salesforce can help business to become more efficient:

  • Automate an offer template – Generate an offer with relevant attachments from “Opportunity” view
  • Create a template for a response to customer issue/request – Generate a response document to customer from “Case” view
  • Generate an account plan presentation – Generate an account plan presentation to sales meeting from “Account” view
  • Get an audit report – Generate and send audit reports for customer from “Custom” view
  • Merge complex data in a maintenance report – Generate a service report from prepared equipment, including assembly photos from Force.com App view

Implementing a document generation App

The setup is easy. It starts with designing a template which can be customised to include attachments or optional blocks. Document generation itself is easy with just a few clicks and the document can even be modified in MS Office or in HTML during the process.

Get in touch to see the full range of capabilities with Documill Dynamo in Salesforce. Learn more about document automation and Documill Dynamo or, book a demo to see the opportunities document generation in Salesforce can offer to you.

By | April 12th, 2016|