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What is Integrated Document Automation for Salesforce?

computer showing data graphic

Salesforce is a powerful CRM tool for enterprises, but it can be made even more awesome by integrating document automation into its platform. Using the latest integration and embedding techniques an organization can seamlessly automate a process like document generation that would take hours to perform manually.

Integrated document automation for Salesforce is the process of incorporating the functions of document generation into the already existing workflow of the CRM. This process would be difficult if it involved programming the software or as a standalone, but with seamless integration of a solution like Windward Studios, this process is made simple.

Salesforce is designed to integrate with other enterprise software that is commonly used. Like document automation software as well as Microsoft Office applications among others. This makes the merging process user friendly so that anyone with a bit of training on how to use the application can execute different workflows without the involvement of technical support.  The true capabilities of Salesforce can be realized through this integration.

Importance of Integration and Embedding for Business Users

Most enterprises today need to keep track of several applications and processes that are managed by independent software. This can create a challenge in memorizing what is doing what and where. In the long run, the technology that is supposed to make workflows simpler may become a problem to manage. Integration and embedding for business users provide a solution to this challenge.

It does more than simply connect applications, it creates an ecosystem in which interaction is made flawless and furthers the productivity of an organization. Businesses today have collaborations between different teams utilizing various software and applications like CRM document automation, this makes it important that all these can be accommodated within the same ecosystem.

With integration and embedding of the document automation solution, a business can achieve the following benefits:

Reduced Time Spent on Repetitive Workflows

Integration makes it possible to automate the Salesforce document generation process. This saves time since tasks that are repeatedly carried out can be automated.  With that effected, time that would be spent checking for mistakes is no longer wasted because documents will be error-free. The software is quick and easy to learn, therefore much more is produced in a shorter time.

Eliminates the Need for a Designer or Technician

With integration and embedding, a familiar ecosystem is created to merge and connect the different sources of data needed to automate documents. In this environment, there is no need for a designer to create templates since familiar programs like Microsoft office can be utilized and then merged with salesforce to create documents simply and fast. By doing this, a user can enjoy the advantages of using salesforce without depending on a technician every time they need to utilize a particular feature.

Enhanced Security

It would be difficult to implement security for independent software and applications. With the integration, there is a single environment that has to be secured so that is much easier to keep track of. Documents and data can be watched over using secure protocols that can be encrypted with ease or with already existing infrastructure. Even if more security tools need to be used, they are easier to keep track of within the same ecosystem.

Reduces Resources Devoted to Document Generation

Although automation may free up the human resource needed to create documents, sometimes an organization ends up having to invest in several tools to enable different applications to work together. With embedding and integration, this need is reduced or even eliminated as applications can merge using the latest features. Also, since extra programming is not needed, the technical resource is freed up to concentrate on other key functions of the organization.  This will save money and resources as well.

Better Efficiency Which Makes Customers Happier

Organizations can work more efficiently if they do not have to worry about technology being too complicated for everyone to utilize. This improves the service that is given to the customers and they will be happy. It usually translates into more business which is what organizations love to achieve.

With integrated document automation for salesforce, it is hardly noticeable that the organization is depending on different tools and software to carry out document creation needs. It is a seamless addition to the way organizations can work efficiently even when the users are not IT experts.

Whether a business wishes to send a simple invoice to a client or generate a complex contract, the process will be fast and easy with the help of this technology that works together in a centralized environment.

Tags Start & End

Tags Can Start & End Anywhere

Appendix B

.NET code for multi-page image output

Appendix A

Java code for multi-page image output

Data Bin Search

The Data Bin can now be searched to find a table, column, node or other piece of data without scrolling through it all.

Shrink to Fit

This will shrink the contents of a cell until it fits the defined cell size.

Time Zone Conversion

A new Windward macro has been added to help with converting dates and times from UTC time to the local time zone.

Image Output Format

New image output formats added.

PostScript Output Format

PostScript, commonly used with printers and printing companies, has been added as an additional output format.

New and Improved Datasets (Designer, Java Engine, .NET Engine)

Datasets have been re-written from scratch to be more powerful and easier to use.

Stored Procedure Wizard (Designer)

This works for all tag types that are connected to a SQL-based data source (Microsoft SQL Server, Oracle, MySQL, or DB2).

Boolean Conditional Wizard (Designer)

Before, conditional statements could only be written manually. Now they can also be built using our intuitive Wizard interface.

Reorganized Ribbon

The ribbon menus have been re-organized and consolidated to improve the report design workflow.

XPath 2.0 as Data Source

Adds various capabilities such as inequalities,descending sort, joins, and other functions.

SQL Select Debugger

SQL Select  Debugger

  • The look and feel was improved
  • Stored Procedure Wizard
  • Improved Exceptions pane

Tag Editor/Tag Selector

Added a Query tab as a field for typing or pasting in a select statement

  • Color Coding of Keywords
  • TypeAhead
  • Evaluate is now "Preview"

Rename a Datasource

All tags using that Data source will be automatically updated with that name.

Connecting to a Data Source

New single interface to replace 2 separate dialog boxes

Tag Tree

Displays of all the tags in the template, structured as they are placed in the template. This provides a simple & intuitive way to see the structure of your template. Also provides the capability to go to any tag and/or see the properties of any tag.

Added Javelin into the RESTful Engine

Support for Google Application Engine Integration

The ability to integrate the Windward Engine into Google’s cloud computing platform for developing and hosting web applications dubbed Google Applications Engine (GAE).

Additional Refinement for HTML Output

  • Improved indentation for ordered and unordered lists
  • Better handling of template header and footer images
  • Better handling for background images and colors

Redesigned PDF Output Support

This new  integration will allow for processing of complex scripts and bi-directional  text such as Arabic.  Your PDF output  will be much tighter and more closely match your template, and we’ll be able  to respond rapidly to PDF requests and fixes.

PowerPoint Support

Includes support for new ForEach and slide break handling, table header row repeat across slide breaks, and native Microsoft support for charts and images.

Tags are Color Coded

Tags are color coded in the template by type, making it easy to visually identify them.

Increased Performance

Version 13’s core code has been reworked and optimized to offer a reduced memory footprint, faster PDF generation and full documentation of supported features and limitations in the specifications for DOCX, XLSX and PPTX.

Advanced Image Properties

Documents can include advanced Word image properties such as shadows, borders, and styles.

Improved HTML Output

Windward has updated HTML output to reflect changing HTML standards.

Version 13 New Data Sources

Windward now works with a slew of new datasources: MongoDB, JSON, Cassandra, OData, Salesforce.com

Generate Code

The Generate Code tool in the designer allows you to open an existing template and, with a click of a button, automatically create a window with the code needed to run your current template with all data sources and variables. Simply copy this code and paste into your application's code in the appropriate place. You now have Windward integrated into your application.

You only need to do this once. You do not do this for each template. Instead, where it has explicit files for the template and output, change that to parameters you pass to this code. Same for the parameters passed to Windward. This example uses explicit values to show you what to substitute in where.

Pivot Tables Adjusted in Output

Any pivot tables in an XLSX template are carried over to the XLSX output. The ranges in the pivot ranges are adjusted to match the generated output. So your final XLSX will have pivot tables set as expected in the generated file.

This makes creating an XLSX workbook with pivot tables trivial.

Imported Template Can be Set to Match the Parent Styles

In an imported sub-template, if its properties for a style (ex. Normal) differ from the parent template's properties for the style, the use in the sub-template can be set to either use the properties in the sub-template, or the properties in the parent.

You set to retain when you don't want the child template's styling to change when imported. You set to use the parent when you want the styling of the imported template to match the styling in the parent.

Any explicit styling is always retained. This only impacts styling set by styles.

Tags can be Placed in Text Boxes

Tags can be placed in text boxes. Including linked text boxes. This gives you the ability to set the text in a textbox from your data.

Tags can be Placed in Shapes & Smart Art

Tags can be placed in shapes & smart art. This gives you the ability to set the text in a shape from your data.

HTML Output Supports Embedded Images

When generating HTML output, the engine can either write bitmaps as distinct files the generate HTML references, or it can embed the images in the HTML providing a single file for the output.

Footnotes & Endnotes can Have Tags

You can place tags in pretty much any part of a template, including in footnotes & endnotes.

Document Locking Supported in DOCX & XLSX

Any parts of a DOCX or XLSX (PowerPoint does not support this) file that are locked in the template, will be locked the same in the output.

Specify Font Substitution

If a font used in the template does not exist on the server generating a report, the font to substitute can be specified.
In addition, if a glyph to be rendered does not exist in the font specified, you can specify the replacement font. This can be set distinctly for European, Bi-Directional, and Far East fonts.

Process Multiple Datasources Simultaneously

If you need this - it's essential. And if you don't need it, it's irrelevant.

Windward enables you to build a document by applying multiple datasources to the template simultaneously. When Windward is merging the data into a template, it processes the template by handling each tag in order, and each tag pulls from different datasources. (As opposed to processing all of one datasource, then processing the next.)

This allows the select tag to use data from another datasource in its select. For example, if you are pulling customer information from one data source, you can then pull data from the sales datasource using the customer ID of the customer presently processing to pull the sales information for that customer. If you're interested in patching together your data from multiple datasources, read this post on our blog.

Genesis Abel

Written by:_
Genesis Abel
Windward © 2020 All Rights Reserved.


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