This applies to:
Available with the following QorusDocs Editions:
Smart Rules in Word and PowerPoint templates ensure that documents and presentations generated from a template contain the right messaging for the right audience. Together with Smart Fields, Smart Rules are a key component of automating the personalization process in QorusDocs.
If you’re new to Smart Fields and Smart Rules, then please read this article first.
Before you can make use of the Design tab to create Smart Rules in documents and in presentations, you'll first need to:
- be subscribed to the Premium plan, and
- belong to either the QorusDocs Admin or Designer roles
In this article, we'll be covering the following topics:
- How Smart Rules in templates work
- How to create Smart Rules with the QorusDocs Add-ins
- How to insert Smart Rules into a template
- Best Practice: Test your Smart Rules
1. How Smart Rules in templates work
You'd first start by specifying at least one condition.
- If the condition evaluates to TRUE, then the content wrapped within the rule IS included in the created document or presentation.
- If the condition evaluates to FALSE, then the content wrapped within the rule IS NOT included in the created document or presentation.
Conditions rely on the information provided by users in Smart Fields forms. You can create Smart Rule conditions based on the following types of Smart Fields:
- Yes No
- Single Select
- Multi Select
Now, let’s learn how to create our first Smart Rule next.
In PowerPoint, Smart Rules can be applied to one slide at a time, and in Word, Smart Rules can be applied to content selected within the body of the document. Smart Rules are especially useful in templates but can also be included in document content that can be inserted directly into emails, documents, and presentations.
2. How to create Smart Rules with the QorusDocs Add-ins
With your template open in Word or in PowerPoint, click on the ‘more’ menu (the three dots, also affectionately known as the meatball menu) in the top nav, and then on ‘Design’
Click on the ‘Rules’ tab, and then on the ‘add’ icon:
In the window that pops up next, give the Smart Rule a name (max length of 50 characters), a description (max length of 150 characters), and specify one or more conditions:
- Immediately after 'Where', we need to specify which Smart Field will be evaluated.This is a drop-down menu, allowing you to select from your existing set of either Text or Choice (Single Select, Multi Select, Yes No) Smart Fields. If you come here and you find that there's a Smart Field missing, you can close this window, create the Smart Field you need, and then return to the 'Rules' tab to define your new Smart Rule.
- Next, choose an operator.The operators available will depend on the field type of the Smart Field you've selected. For instance, if the Smart Field you're basing the rule on is a 'Single Select' field, then the operators available will be 'equals' or 'not equals'. However, if the Smart Field you're basing the rule on is 'Multi Select' field, then the operators available will be 'contains' and 'does not contain'
- Then finally, type a value for the rule to evaluate against. It's also possible to have a Smart Rule that evaluates more than one condition at a time. To add another condition, click on 'Add Expression', and then define that condition as explained above.
Combining more than one condition in a Smart Rule
Within a Smart Rule that has multiple conditions, it's possible to specify whether they should ALL be TRUE before the content to which the Smart Rule is applied shows up in the resulting document or presentation:
Alternatively, it's possible to make the condition group an 'OR' group, so that if at least one of the specified conditions are TRUE, the content within the Smart Rule will be included in the created doc or presentation:
Using Smart Fields in Smart Rules that are not listed as ‘In this document’
It's worth noting that Smart Fields do not have to be inserted (in lieu of placeholder text) into your document or template for them to be used in a Smart Rule
For instance, let's say there's a proactive proposal template that has been designed to cater for clients interested in one or more different products.
Without QorusDocs, a salesperson using that proposal template, would need to manually strip out the parts that are not relevant to their client, leaving in the document only the messaging about products the client has expressed an interest in (plus maybe some cross- or upsell messaging).
With QorusDocs, a salesperson wouldn't need to manually strip out anything, provided the template contains Smart Fields and Rules.
Instead, when they click on the 'create' button for that template using any of the QorusDocs Add-ins, they could fill in a form.
The form could have a multi-select Smart Field that would allow the salesperson to select one or more products from a list of possible choices. If the salesperson types selects ‘Microsoft Dynamics 365' and ‘Microsoft Power BI’, then the Smart Rules in the document have all the information they need to be able to automatically include only content relevant to Dynamics 365 and Power BI in the generated document.
In the screenshot below, the top six Smart Fields replace placeholder text within the proposal and the remaining six Smart Fields are used to collect information to evaluate Smart Rules against, like whether the proposal is for a new or an existing client:
3. How to Insert Smart Rules into a template
If you're applying a Smart Rule to content within a document, first select the relevant text (and/or images and tables within the doc), and then click on the 'insert' button next to the rule:
If you're working in PowerPoint, then select the slide you'd like to apply the Smart Rule too, then insert it using the Design panel in the QorusDocs Add-in for PowerPoint.
4. Best practice: Test your Smart Rules
It is considered best practice to test your templates thoroughly before they go live, and that includes testing your Smart Rules.
To do that, with the template where you inserted rules still open on your desktop, click on 'Create This Document' in the QorusDocs Add-in.
In the Smart Fields form that pops up next, you can fill in any test values you need and simulate the creation of a new doc, while applying all the Smart Field and Smart Rules present in the template.
If you find something is not quite right in the generated document, click on the gear icon to the right of the Smart Rule, edit it and make changes as required.