09-02-2009 01:30 PM
09-03-2009 02:01 AM
Our salesforce system is using a feature which is exactly what you described below:
We created two custom Objects: "Quote" and "Quote Item". The Quote Object is visisble as related list on the Opportunities. Via a click on the button "New Quote" a visualforce page is shown where some fields (e.g. address) is pre-defaulted from the Opportunity and can be modified by the sales person.
After another click, two things are done:
- The product information from the Opportunity (products, quantities, prices, etc.) are saved into a new generated quote.
- A word document is created based on a Mail Merge template. This document contrains all information relevant for the customer (products, prices, contact name, etc.) and is customizeable by the user.
A quote can also be "reverted" to bring it's information back to the Opportunity (versioning)
So far the functionality works pretty good. However there seems to be a problem with the Mail Merge ActiveX Control, which prevents the document creation on some machines (I would say 2 out of 100). Salesforce support is investigating this, but have not yet found the soultion.
If you plan to implement this, I would reccomend you to make the second step (document creation) optional. Many sales guys like to use versioning without automated document creation.
09-04-2009 10:23 AM - edited 09-04-2009 10:24 AM
09-06-2009 11:58 PM
The way our organisation is doing this is by using Mail Merge templates. Firstly you need to download Connect for Office which will install the MS Word Add-in. By using this tool you can build a Word document with SF merge fields. For example a section of ours looks like the below in Word:
Attention: «CONTACT_FIRSTNAME» «CONTACT_LASTNAME»
Your Reference: «OPPORTUNITY_CLIENT_REFERENCE»
After your document is complete you need to upload it under Communication Templates >Mail Merge Templates. Now navigate to your opportunity and choose Mail Merge, choose the template and SF will grab the chosen fields and put them in your Word document. After this you can edit the Word file as normal, email, convert to pdf etc.
This is a good solution if your proposals follow some set rules but often require a lot of custom editing before submission.