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#371506 - 11/01/2019 17:44 Need a way to fill out a template and provide formatted pdf files
ShadowMan
addict

Registered: 09/06/1999
Posts: 554
Loc: Newfoundland, Canada
Wow! It's been a long time since I've posted here looking for advice, but I have not found a smarter, well-rounded group ever.

On to my issue...

We have policies that are currently written in word. Individually.
The template is mostly the same across documents. Mostly.

Basically, I want to be able to have a cloud-based system where the person in charge of the policies can simply enter the information in different blocks, hit submit, and have the policy be available to the world, automatically via our website, as a nicely formatted pdf file.

Alternatively, a local software install on their PC, which would allow the block-based entry of the information, along with the ability to export pdf versions (with defined filename specifications as a huge bonus) of the individual policies, as well as a complete Policy manual, would be great as well. The policies don't get updated often, and I could deal with manual uploads if necessary.

Oh, and within a small, pretty much non-existent, budget.

Any thoughts?
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#371508 - 12/01/2019 19:03 Re: Need a way to fill out a template and provide formatted pdf files [Re: ShadowMan]
gbeer
carpal tunnel

Registered: 17/12/2000
Posts: 2665
Loc: Manteca, California
Sounds like a straight forward form letter function. Well within Word’s known functionality.
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Glenn

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#371517 - 14/01/2019 17:22 Re: Need a way to fill out a template and provide formatted pdf files [Re: ShadowMan]
canuckInOR
carpal tunnel

Registered: 13/02/2002
Posts: 3158
Loc: Portland, OR
Are you trying to ditch Word? And is a cloud-based system something you're willing to build yourself? I don't know of anything that already exists, off the top of my head, but a fairly simple service could be built on top of Pandoc (for exporting individual PDF policies) and pdfjam (for combining individual policies into a complete policy manual).

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#371518 - 14/01/2019 20:09 Re: Need a way to fill out a template and provide formatted pdf files [Re: ShadowMan]
ShadowMan
addict

Registered: 09/06/1999
Posts: 554
Loc: Newfoundland, Canada
The documents are in Word format and can continue to be made in Word. However, I wish to prevent the user who inputs the data from being able to click on the logo and move it, or delete it, or from changing margins, etc. This is where a web-based, fill in the boxes solution would come into play.

I'm not interested in building a system myself at this time. I would much rather find something that someone else could easily support via a third party (the service provider) in case I'm not around to support it.

Really, I just want a user to be able to (1)enter data, (2)review the final output, (3)accept it, and (4)it automatically be available on our website. No page editing, no WordPress editing, just a dynamic page that automatically updates.

I have a feeling that something exists, but my google-fu cannot find it anywhere.
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30 gig RioCar SN: 30103114
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#371519 - 14/01/2019 21:25 Re: Need a way to fill out a template and provide formatted pdf files [Re: ShadowMan]
tfabris
carpal tunnel

Registered: 20/12/1999
Posts: 31225
Loc: Seattle, WA
You mention "no WordPress editing".

Does that mean that the target site already runs in WordPress? If so, there are multiple WordPress plugins which do form filling. I'm not sure if, by "no WordPress editing" you mean that you don't want to install another WordPress plugin?

Note: I personally wouldn't recommend WordPress as a solution unless your site was already a WordPress site, i.e., you'd already drunk the WordPress kool aid.
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Tony Fabris

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#371550 - 16/01/2019 18:02 Re: Need a way to fill out a template and provide formatted pdf files [Re: tfabris]
ShadowMan
addict

Registered: 09/06/1999
Posts: 554
Loc: Newfoundland, Canada
Wordpress Kool-Aid has already been ingested.

By no WP editing, I mean from the Policy person's point of view.

Ideally, they would upload the policy to a service which provides a publically viewable, dynamically updated, webpage which lists all the policies that are available - this webpage would then be embedded into a WP page. I would do the embedding part one time and be done with it from my point of view. As the policy person does their job the policies would magically show up on our webpage.
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12 gig empeg Mark II, SN: 080000101
30 gig RioCar SN: 30103114
My blog

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