Word use at companies: Template chaos and zero quality assurance

Whether it be letters, press releases, newsletters, quotes, contracts, tenders, process documentation, manuals or reports, many companies are intensive Word users, for both internal and external purposes. There are usually clear specifications as to how the relevant documents need to be laid out, and which mandatory information they need to contain. Word templates are the way to firmly establish these specifications at your company.

But while this may work well in theory, practice at larger companies quickly reveals where Word reaches its limits:

  • In addition to the centrally provided templates, the company also uses a large number of department-specific templates for special purposes. In most cases, there is a lack of centralized control over branding and quality standards here.
  • As every legal unit (and every brand and international branch) requires its own details in the header and footer, the number of templates soon multiplies.
  • Things get really complicated when content components (e.g. centrally checked quote items or contract components) come into play.
  • Providing these entire templates and updating them every time they change (e.g. when there’s a change to the executive board) is a hugely time-consuming exercise that’s often neglected. It generally also requires the involvement of both the Marketing/Communications and IT departments, which doesn’t make the process any easier.
  • Normal users can barely keep up with the many template changes. They often don’t even know where the latest templates are. So they usually simply revert to old documents and overwrite their content.
  • Things frequently also come unstuck in terms of how documents look: While professionally created Word templates do contain precise typographic specifications, e.g. in the form of styles, most users aren’t able to use these correctly, and thus avoid them completely or don’t use them consistently.

This scenario is considered normal at many companies, with all the associated consequences for external image and internal efficiency. Or companies try to fix some of the problems with solutions such as general template management systems.

Our QuickDoc Word add-in proves it’s possible to improve on this situation. QuickDoc makes it easy to provide and manage templates and components centrally, and ensures users actually use these correctly too.

Curious? Then click here to learn more about QuickDoc.



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