Last week, I mentioned changes that we’re making to GroupDocs Assembly to make it more intuitive. Document assembly (also known as document automation) is an aspect of document management that you might not be familiar with, so this week I’ll discuss what it is and how it can be used in more detail.
Document Management?You’ve found your way to GroupDocs and the GroupDocs blog so chances are that you have an idea about [document management](http://groupdocs.com/"online document management"). It’s simply the process of keeping track or and managing the various documents you use. Creating a professional-looking template, storing it online and sharing it with your colleagues so that they can all use it is all document management. So is customising contracts, sending them out for signing and archiving the signed documents. Document assembly allows you to automate document creation to save you time and effort.
Why Do I Need Document Assembly?What makes document assembly so useful is obvious from the other name for this function: document automation. It allows you to automate data collection and make it specific to a particular document. You can re-use the document again and again, creating a new, unique document each time. It’s commonly used to put together legal documents, contracts and letters, bringing together sections of text with data from other sources. Mail merging, for example, is a type of document assembly. [caption id=“attachment_329” align=“aligncenter” width=“338” caption=“Document assembly: take a template, add data and create a new document.”] [/caption]
Give Me an Example!Imagine that you own a painter business. People call you to get their walls painted. Before you can give them a quote, there are certain things you need to know: the number of rooms or walls, whether they need the ceiling done too, or the woodwork, what the approximate square footage of the area you’ll paint will be, and if there are any special conditions (very dark or textured wall, for example, or if a room has unusually high ceilings). You can put all of these questions into a quote document and send it to the potential client. They fill it in and create a unique document from which you can quickly prepare a quote or visit to give the place a once-over before quoting. [caption id=“attachment_330” align=“aligncenter” width=“650” caption=“GroupDocs Assembly lets you add questions to a template to automate document creation.”] [/caption]
Document Assembly with GroupDocs AssemblyGroupDocs Assembly’s aim is to make document assembly as easy as possible. The process is straightforward:
- Create a template with fields to hold customised data.
- Add questions (making a questionnaire).
- Customise the document pages.
The changes that we’re making to GroupDocs Assembly encapsulate this process so that you cannot go wrong.