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  1. #1
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    Filling data into a Word Template automatically (2003 SP2)

    We have created a document as a Word template. There are several places in the document where people must enter certain information about a project (client name, address, etc.). The information appears in multiple places in the document.

    Is there a way to automate the procedure so they only have to enter the information once and all of the required places are filled in from that?

    I know I could do it as a merge file - but most of these users won't have a clue what to do with a merge file.

    Thanks for any suggestions.

  2. #2
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: Filling data into a Word Template automatically (2003 SP2)

    You could use form fields from the Forms toolbar, and protect the document for forms.
    While the document is still unprotected, double click a text form field to set its properties.
    - Set the bookmark name of the form field to something meaningful, e.g. ClientName or Company.
    - Tick the check box 'Calculate on exit'
    - Click OK.
    You can now use Insert | Reference | Cross Reference... to refer to the bookmark elsewhere in the document.
    Once the document is protected, the cross references will be updated automatically after the user enters info in a text form field and tabs out of it.

  3. #3
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    Re: Filling data into a Word Template automatically (2003 SP2)

    Thank you for the suggestion. Does protecting the document make it so edits can't be made to it?

    I forgot to mention that the entire doctument isn't boilerplate - there are many instances where it must be customized for each individual project with more than just a word or two.

  4. #4
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: Filling data into a Word Template automatically (2003 SP2)

    Protection acts at the section level. You can specify which sections will be protected for forms and which ones won't. So you could have a protected section in which the user can enter data such as Client Name etc., and other sections in which he/she can type freely.

  5. #5
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    Re: Filling data into a Word Template automatically (2003 SP2)

    We have templates with REF fields in inprotected sections that point to FormFields in a protected section. From experience I know that it's inevitable that users are not always careful and type over a REF field. That's why I would add one point to Hans' excellent advice: turn shading of fields always on in Tools | Options, tab Display, upper part, right hand side.

  6. #6
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    Re: Filling data into a Word Template automatically (2003 SP2)

    Thanks for the advice! I got busy yesterday and didn't have a chance to try it, but I will as soon as I can get myself un-buried.

  7. #7
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    Re: Filling data into a Word Template automaticall

    Instead of using forms & protecting document sections, I find it easier to use mailmerge to a new document. In creating the document I add prompts & repeat that data throughout my document using the ASK & REF fields.

    In recent years I also have been using Bill Coan's Simpleprompter (Windows version) to add prompts to my documents. His prompts will repeat the data input by the user. To create the prompts you add plain text commands (usually inside [square brackets] )

    You have to purchase licences (no good if others outside of your orgasation are the users), but the speed that you can prepare simple or complex documents with intelligent prompts is amazing. Money well spent.

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