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Best Document Generation tools

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Table of Contents

What Is Document Generation Software?

First and the foremost, a document generation software, a document creation software, document automation software, or all the document generation tools are one and the same thing. These are all different names given to a popular technological solution, commonly known as the document generation software. So, what is it and why is the integration of a software so important for any business today?

In layman’s terms, a document generation software is a package that takes user inputs to accordingly customize the standardized text-based document templates according to the end user requirement. Which basically means that all the text-based documents that have a standard format and content, viz legal documents, trust deeds, mortgage contracts, bank guarantees, medical reports, proposals, forms etc. can be converted into standard templates using these document generation tools. Further, an important function of these tools is that through the end user inputs, only for the key fields in all the concerned documents that vary with each user, these standard templates are then customised to suit the end user requirements.

In more simple words, if a user requires to get a legal contract done with another party, there would be a lot of legal jargons and ornate language involved through the heaps and heaps of pages and content, that are standard across platforms and regions.

Hence, a document automation software will take a text-based standard template with the common legal jargons, formatting, and standard content. It will then ask the end user to provide information specific to that particular contract like the names of the parties involved, the date of the contract, and the amount involved, among others. These fields will then be replaced in the main template, giving the end user a readymade legal agreement within a few moments, that otherwise would have taken a lot of time and effort.

Over and above what is discussed so far, the document generation tools can also be used as tools to create a standard template from any text-based document, alternative word processors, and as PDF creators and editors.

Some of the commonly used document generation tools are Templafy, Winward Studios, Foxit PhantomPDF, and Adobe Acrobat among a host of other available software.

Types of documentation generation tools

There are various types of documentation builder software, based on the project cycle, which involves planning, build-up, implementation, and closeout. We do know that technical writing is at all easy. But proper and automatic software documentation tools can not only ease the process of time-consuming writing but it also helps you to tackle various challenges at work. All you need to know is what kind of tool is required for a specific stage during the software development life cycle. As a result, we have compiled a list of tools based on the stage of the project. The categories of documentation builder software according to project stages are:

  • End-User Documentation Builder Software:This category of documentation generation system allows you to complete several types of documents for end-users, which can be in the form of a user guide, a training manual, or others that tend to help readers. For instance, while first using any tool, people generally use free-trial versions that use up a lot of time and resources. Another method is to compile a file using a text editor, coupled with any screen capturing tool and an image editor. Once done, you save these texts on a Word doc or Google doc. In either case, the whole process is totally manual and takes up valuable time. In such scenarios, you can use an automatic documentation generation system to make the job quicker, easier and more effective.
  • Requirements Documentation Generation Software:This type of documentation generation system offers you the flexibility to gather and manage various requirements. You start by first compiling tool specifications when you start any new project. And the decision process is often more difficult than the execution methodology. When you fail to gather the correct requirements, your project may be branded as unsuccessful. Efficient documentation generation systems help you to convert your ideas into actionable solutions.
  • Software Architecture Documentation Generation Software:Helping you in writing software architecture, these documentation generation systems outline the primary concepts and principles, which are used by anyone to design architecture. They go a step ahead and also offer clarity on understanding the logic behind any software design. If you do not have accurate and detailed architecture documentation, your project may find no direction. We’ve compiled a list of tools that are typically used to design software architecture documents.
  • API Documentation Creation Software:If you have worked as a developer, you would know how tedious the whole process of technical writing and software documentation is. Hence, we should ensure that these files are compiled in a correct, consistent, and precise manner. As a result, to help developers in their job, API documentation software goes a long way in automating the whole procedure.
  • Database Documentation Creation Software:Almost all successful companies understand the benefits of having a centralized database that allows them access to all stages of the project. It helps you identify those areas of the project that have loopholes or are lagging behind in terms of deadlines and schedules. Database documentation systems automate the entire process and helps you to choose risk areas and evaluate your decisions. The appropriate tool will make the whole procedure more accurate, efficient, quick, and error-free..
  • Testing Documentation Creation Software:This type of documentation generation system can be deployed to support the testing efforts in your company. You can get them in small and large versions, as well as in integrated or standalone types and desktop or web versions, and free or paid tools.
  • Marketing Documentation Generation Software:The last step of any project completion is its marketing efforts. Marketing documentation is generally comprehensive and includes a detailed formal report of all your activities. This task is generally extremely time-consuming for the marketing department. But with the help of automated marketing documentation has been tools, the function can become a cross-departmental collaborative task, which offer the team to view their ideas in real-time while monitoring each other’s actions and setting up strategic goals. It also helps in analyzing the results of certain marketing policies, after their implementation, so that the team can improve on these strategies. As a result, your documentation becomes a vital part of your marketing efforts that gives a whole new dimension to how you used to see marketing before. Automatic software documentation tools are extremely important and can be implemented during any stage of a software development life cycle. It solely depends on your purpose and the type of content you wish to deliver to your clients, employees, and end-users. Not only does it make your daily tasks a lot easier but it also saves you time. After all, accurate and concise documents are vital assets of any company.

Advantages Of Using Document Generation Tools

  • Accuracy: It is a common practice to copy and paste content from standard documents as and when required to prepare a similar new document, leading to errors made with negligent copy and paste. Hence, an unaltered template solution provided by these document generation tools ensures the accuracy of content & the format of the document, as well as of the spelling and grammar to match the standard practices.
  • Simplicity: With the all the standards taken care of, even a novice user can create all the necessary documents with the templates provided in these document generation tools without having to go through the technical jargons and formatting considerations.
  • Profitability: With the use of document generation software, there is no need for additional resources to proofread or create lengthy documents from scratch. These additional resources can be used on other productive tasks and hence putting their expertise to better use and increasing the profitability of the organisation.
  • Responsiveness: If one is in a business that requires drafting such lengthy documents on a regular basis, these customised templates provided by the document generation software, will reduce the time taken by the user on each document drastically. Hence, in the same amount of time, a user can cater to many more clients as compared to the situation without the aid of a document creation software.
  • Consistency: An organization employing any document creation software, will have the same set of standards assured for a respective document, throughout the realm and functionality of the organization. Hence, increased consistency in all the documents can be achieved, irrespective of the size and scope of the organization.
  • Security: Some of the best document generation tools like Nintex Drawloop Document Generation, allow the administrator to control or limit the content & versions of the document created by the employees across the organization.

This can help organizations monitor the number of copies being shared and created of the documents containing sensitive information like pricing and sales figures.

Also, the software limits the sharing permission to a select group of users so as to prevent information leakage. And this again is one of the most sought-after features of a good document creation software.

Key Features Of Document Generation Software Tools

The best document generation tools available in the market will definitely provide the end user with the following key features:

  • Variety of file formats: A good document automation software, will have the support across various file formats like word docs and PDFs, inbuilt in its environment. This provides for easy customisation, sharing, and compliance with the needs and situations of different clients.
  • Variety of document templates:  All the best document generation tools in the market provide their users with a plethora of features. This feature, however, remains the basic need in every software. The software hence is tailored to the needs of various clients with diverse backgrounds in mind and hence provides a wide variety of templates from legal to medical documents.
  • Cloud-based access: The software allows the user to save all the content over cloud storage and hence the work can be accessed from any remote location.
  • Multiple customer profiles: A good document automation software allows the user to store as many customer profiles as needed with all the relevant customer information stored in the database. This allows for quicker response as and when a particular document related to an old customer is to be generated, with the software pre-filling the details on its own, from the database.
  • Security: As discussed above, these software solutions have stringent security measures in place. From allowing only a limited number of users to share and edit the documents to letting the user save the documents over cloud storage with complete cloud security, these tools, give maximum priority to the security of the documents.
  • Easy Installation: Needless to say, the best document generation tools are easy to install on any system that the user needs, without the aid of the vendor.

Market Trends Of Using Document Generation Tools

1 Transforming business landscapes: According to research conducted by Aragon Research, 65% of the enterprises will redesign their document handling procedures to go full automation.

2 Shift to 0 Manual responses: With the software support like document generation tools, the industry is shifting to automate all their formal interactions to automated responses, hence reducing the manual response to 0.

3 Move to faster responses: A research says that software generated automated content will save you about 115 minutes, as against the time taken (2 hours), if done manually. Hence, the industry as a whole is bound to shift towards machine created documents as over the traditionally human created docs.

4 The Best of 2018: According to a ranking compiled by various surveys and responses by ITcentralstation, following are the best document generation tools: Winward Studios, Docmosis, SpringCM, and Ecrion EOS.

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Nidhi RaghuvanshiBy Nidhi Raghuvanshi | Last Updated: October 28, 2020

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