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Quick Guide: Top 5 Use Cases for Salesforce Document Automation


Salesforce document automation simplifies the seemingly time-consuming and complex processes for organizations. No matter what field of business you may be in, there is a level of efficiency that document automation will add to the business. Business owners get excited when they start to realize the incredible benefits of using a document automation system in their Salesforce platform.

If you are still wondering how you can get the best from Salesforce document automation, let us take a look at the following use cases.

Creating Account Plan Presentations

Account planning easily identifies what the business knows, what it should know, and set targets to help move the business forward. Most businesses consider account planning as one of the key sales activities which push the business forward but the process of planning accounts is usually tedious and disjointed. A number of apps are used in the process which ends up with a not so smooth presentation. Using Salesforce document automation, however, all this is centralized. The data needed is pulled from different sources, updated and then entered into the account app in the Salesforce platform for a smooth, accurate, and easy presentation. A lot of time is saved and yet the data used is accurate and above all confidence is maintained in the process.

Data Management and Merger When Creating Reports

Often, businesses will need to merge a number of reports from different sources when creating a final report. This is just as complex as account planning since there will be a number of data sources and there is always the risk of leaving out some sources or ending up with outdated data. With Salesforce document automation, however, merging this data is made a lot easier, it does not matter how many sources may be available, the software will swiftly pick out all the updated and important data related to the particular report and seamlessly provide it to the user. What may have been a task that would last days can be completed in minutes!

Offer Template Automation

Businesses have a number of documents like offers and contracts that they will need to generate from time to time and the process of coming up with templates can be time-consuming. You can use the template option available in the document generation software. With this feature, you can ensure key aspects of a document are always maintained according to agreed standards. Whatever the need may be, emails, proposals and so on, you can have them generated within minutes.

Generating Audit Reports

With the help of a custom view, you would be able to generate audit reports in seconds. All the information needed for an audit is already stored in different locations and it is a matter of accessing that data in Salesforce and analyzing it. Most of the work is done by the document automation software and the report sharing can also be automated so that once the audit is complete, the customer can receive it on time. This cuts out the possibility of forgetting to send the audit report.

Prompt Response to Customer Requests

These days it is increasingly important that a business is able to respond promptly to concerns and requests from their clients. Sometimes it may not be possible to always respond immediately when a request is made. Salesforce document automation makes it possible to do this because you can create a template for the responses and then automate it so that particular requests or problems will get responded to immediately and there will always be records of every correspondence with the customer. This makes the business more responsive and encourages better feedback from the customers.

Final Words

Salesforce is a powerful tool for businesses to do a lot in a short period of time as they save time and money. The great thing is that it is easy to implement document automation software within Salesforce and there is no need for in-depth training to be able to use the software since it integrates with all the common apps that most businesses use. There are many other use cases for Salesforce that you can discover as you continue using it.

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


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