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Windward vs. Ecrion: Which Suits Your DocGen Needs The Most?

Windward and Ecrion are two major document automation solution providers that aim to make your document automation process even easier. Both cater to clients across various verticals with their own set of functionalities. Though Windward and Ecrion do have a lot in common, there are important differences between the two that make them better for different use cases.

While Ecrion lets you build templates only in Ecrion Editor, Windward endows you the capability to create templates in MS Office. This is easily the most significant difference between the two.

Here, we have compiled a comparison report of Windward and Ecrion so that you can make the most informed decision for your document automation needs.

Windward vs. Ecrion – A Detailed Comparison Report

1. Designing Templates

When it comes to building templates with Ecrion, it has a very intuitive template designer. Anything you want to have on your template—be it images, barcodes, charts, stylesheets, etc., all you need to do is drag and drop them from the datasource pane. Ecrion will incorporate it on your template quickly. Besides, it supports an array of datasources that you can leverage seamlessly for generating actionable reports.

Windward also offers all these features. But the only difference is Ecrion requires you to install its Publisher to utilize the above functionalities. In contrast, Windward comes as an add-in to your already-installed MS Office and enables you to operate effortlessly within a familiar environment, which is something huge you need to get hands-on with the new software.

2. Analyst

Let's say you have a number of transactions listed on a single document. Now, you want to sort these transactions by date or amount. Ecrion lets you do it in a fraction of the second with its Analyst. Hence, you can have valuable insights for your customers and design essential strategies. This is a peculiar functionality of Ecrion, which you would miss with other document generation tools.

3. Query Wizard

The foremost thing that you will require while creating your templates is writing queries to select the data. So, some of the leading document automation software comes with a Query Wizard, which lets you and your team build templates within no time.

Unfortunately, Ecrion does not come with any Query Wizard; thus, building templates is solely a developer’s task. But luckily, that’s not the case with Windward! It has got Query Wizards for SQL, Xpath, JSON, OData, and Salesforce. Thus, it makes it easy for business users as well as developers, to design templates. Moreover, it supports 'no code behind,' i.e., all you need to do is drag and drop your data fields, and Windward will automatically generate queries. With Ecrion, you do need to insert code for mapping data fields.

4. Document Locking

Legal documents require being compliant to the standards of the organization. So, it is essential to prevent unauthorized access or modifications by any user. With Windward, you have the ability of document locking, giving you the key to reducing legal liability. Ecrion doesn’t have the same feature.

5. Validation, Error & Warning Handling

Determining errors and warning before finalizing any document is of utmost importance. Windward excels its offerings by validating your templates, listing errors and warnings on test generation, and even by handling runtime errors. You don't need to waste your time looking out for a mistake.  On the contrary, Ecrion has no such functionality.

Windward vs. Ecrion At A Glance

Features

Ecrion

Windward

Code Behind
It requires you to type code for mapping fields
No code behind
Generate Code
Yes
Applications

Ecrion Editor

Only supports Word, Excel & PowerPoint for Windows. It neither supports PDF nor any Web-based applications.
Conditional Formatting
Yes
Drag & Drop Doclets
Yes
Query Wizards
It easily fetches data from multiple sources.
Multiple Datasources
Yes
Supported Datasources

JSON

OData

SQL

XML

Salesforce

MS Dynamics

JSON

OData

SQL

XML

Tag Start & End Locations
Yes
Tags

out

import

bitmap

forEach

if

else

else if

chart

out

import

bitmap

set

query

forEach

if

else

switch

link

bookmark

chart

Imported Templates
Advanced
Document Locking
Yes
Validation, Error & Warning Handling
Yes
Data Count
Yes
Pros & Cons
  • Pro: Easily integrates with your existing applications
  • Pro: Great for beginners and people with no computer tech experience
  • Con: Only works with MS Office
  • Con: Lacks feature like Digital Signature
Pricing
Visit Windward's pricing page for a detailed price list.

Features

Ecrion

Windward

Applications

Ecrion Editor

Word

Excel

PowerPoint

Supported Datasources

JSON

OData

SQL

XML

Salesforce

MS Dynamics

JSON

OData

SQL

XML

Output Formats
Everything including direct output to printer
IF Statements
Advanced
Code Behind
It requires you to type code for mapping fields
No code behind
Drag & Drop Doclets
Advanced
Imported Templates
Advanced
Pros & Cons
  • Pro: Once the datasources are set, it is easy to use
  • Pro: Integrates with a range of business systems and applications
  • Pro: Supports 10+ languages
  • Pro: Prominent clients include Sunkist, Volvo, HSBC, Pfizer, and more
  • Con: Doesn't work with web applications
  • Con: You find it difficult to pick tags if you mixed them with a block of text

Features

Ecrion

Windward

Code Behind
It requires you to type code for mapping fields
No code behind
Drag & Drop Doclets
It supports drag and drop throughout the platform
Multiple Datasources
It easily fetches data from multiple sources
Validation, Error & Warning Handling
You can easily detect errors and warnings
Time Zone
There's no such functionality available
Document Status
There are no predefined modes, wherein you can put your documents. But you can preview them before finalizing
Conditional Statements
It supports 'if' and 'else' tags along with 12+ other tags
Output Formats
You can have the output in every format you desire
Pros & Cons
  • Pro: With easy datasource set-up, it makes document creation a breeze
  • Pro: It is great for beginners and people with no computer tech experience
  • Con: It integrates only with MS Office
  • Con: Sometimes, you may face a few minor glitches, but the team is quick to handle it

Features

Ecrion

Windward

Applications

Ecrion Editor

Word

Excel

PowerPoint

Code Behind
It requires you to type code for mapping fields
No code behind
Process Embedded Office Objects
It can't have embedded objects
It has all types of embedded objects and also processes the same seamlessly
Supported Datasources

JSON

OData

SQL

XML

Salesforce

MS Dynamics

JSON

OData

SQL

XML

Tags

out

import

bitmap

forEach

if

else

else if

chart

out

import

bitmap

set

query

forEach

if

else

switch

link

bookmark

chart

Features

Ecrion

Windward

Multiple Datasources
It can also process multiple datasources simultaneously
Macros
You can create custom macros as and when required in your template
Rendering Barcodes
Windward renders barcodes as fonts, which may not be as effective as images
Validation, Error & Warning Handling
It takes care of each aspect to ensure you get the document as desired
Output Formats
You can have the output in every format you desire
Drag & Drop Doclets
Supports pretty well
Pros & Cons
  • Pro: Easily imports tags from connected datasources
  • Pro: Easy to use within established Microsoft Office Desktop applications like Word, Excel, and PowerPoint
  • Con: You might encounter problems with reports
  • Con: APIs need improvement

Summing Up

Ecrion and Windward both empower businesses to create templates with no programming knowledge necessary. Moreover, they support multiple datasources to help you create the most stunning documents. However, Ecrion has certain limitations to its documentation and tutorial parts, making it difficult for beginners to learn about the product. On the other hand, Windward has so much to tell about its product, features, and functionalities; hence, anyone can get familiar with the tool.

One major drawback with Ecrion is that you can create templates only in the Word Processor that Ecrion offers, which is not the case with Windward. Nevertheless, if this is something you are ready to overlook, Ecrion and Windward are the best document automation tools.

You can dig deeper and gain more knowledge about Windward and Ecrion from their detailed reviews.