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  1. #1
    New Lounger
    Join Date
    May 2014
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    template, numbering advice for shared documents

    I need to create a "template" in Word 2010 that other people will use to develop documents. "Template" is in quotes because I'm currently planning to distribute a .docx file to other people instead of a .dotx file. Headings will be numbered, as will multilevel procedure steps.

    I'm looking for advice from anyone who has been there and done that.

    Some considerations:

    - The people who will be using the "template" are not Word experts. Most of them have no training and are infrequest users.

    - I might be able to provide some initial training, but it will likely be forgotten by the time the "template" is used later on.

    I'm pretty sure that if I distribute a .dotx file and some instructions, people will be frightened off by where the .dotx file needs to be saved. If they get beyond saving, getting them to display the Developer tab for access to templates or explaining "automatically update styles" to them will be enough to ensure failure.

    Also, most people currently "save as" to create new documents with the formatting they want. Old habits die hard.

    I'm also concerned about multilevel lists for procedure steps. I'd like to use list styles and a paragraph styles for each level. But I think the ridiculous workaround for getting the numbering to restart at 1 at the highest level will be too much for people. I'm leaning toward using list styles but not paragraph styles.

    Any advice? Thanks!

  2. #2
    Silver Lounger Charles Kenyon's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2001
    Sun Prairie, Wisconsin, Wisconsin, USA
    Thanked 128 Times in 123 Posts
    Take the time to teach people to use templates. It isn't hard at all.

    Going back to your main question, set up according to the procedures set forth by Shauna Kelly in her article.

    Make sure people have the AutoCorrect AutoFormat as You Type option to automatically number turned off. That leads to something called spaghetti numbering.

    The option to automatically update styles should be turned OFF.

    People do not need the developer tab to use templates. Most people don't need it at all which may be why it is turned off by default.

    It can be easier to use templates if they are stored in a folder designated as the Workgroup Templates folder and they have some sort of easy way to get to the File New dialog.

    You may be best off adding a custom home Tab to the ribbon in your template that has the numbering options stripped out. This would not require macros. If you can use a macro-enabled template, you could put custom buttons for your numbering on the Ribbon home tab. Customize the Ribbon (It Doesn't Take Rocket Science) At the very least, you could add QAT buttons to your template.
    Charles Kyle Kenyon
    Madison, Wisconsin

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