Quick start with Conga Composer+DEMO

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Conga Composer allows customers to modify, enhance and customize experience of creating documents with different requirements for Salesforce users. You can get more from your Salesforce through easy and quick document generation and reporting by merging content from any standard or custom object into richly-formatted templates. Predefined formatted documents templates can upload data from standard and custom Salesforce objects. Composer solutions are built by Salesforce admins and placed on  page layouts from where end users can run them. Composer solutions differ in accessibility of various selections for end users, also they can be fully automated to run in background. Here is a high-level Conga Composer user guide that gives you insights into opportunities of this Salesforce application.

 

Content

1. Introduction
2. Ways to build a solution in Conga Composer
3. Template Builder. Working with templates

  • Template Builder
  • Template Library

4. Solution packs
5. Solution Manager
6. Conga Composer Addons

  • Conga Conductor
  • Conga Workflow
  • Conga Mail Merge

7.    Conga ActionGrid
8.    Creating a solution with a solution manager
9.    Conclusion

There are 3 ways to build a solution in Conga Composer:

1. Using Solution packs (these are pre-built solutions that gather the necessary data);

2. Using Solution Manager (a feature that guides users through the process of creating solutions, providing a rich set of functionality);

3. Manually (using URL including the base URL that  identifies the master object).

 

Custom button or link on any object’s page layout gives access to its fields, also reports and SOQL queries can retrieve additional information from other objects and lists.

Custom templates for document generation can be created through several possible ways (Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel, PDF, Email). Templates allow users to group and sort data for a document, as well as format it. As a result the prepared template completely meet requirements of business use cases.

When output files are generated by Conga Composer, there are many possible ways to store and deliver them (users can send files via email, store using cloud storage systems, download, post to chatter).

Template Builder. Working with templates

Conga Templates can be created with Template Builder or by means of other applications (such as Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel). Template library can be also  used to start customization with an existing template.

Templates specify what kind of information will contain the document and how it will look like. Outcome documents can be of different format (Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel, Microsoft PowerPoint, HTML Email and PDF).

Data for the template is uploaded from Master Object, but SOQL queries and reports allow to get also additional information. Repeated data can be showed in tables (Microsoft Word is the most featured application for this), the data can be also demonstrated or hidden depending on  certain criteria.

Conga Composer parameters enable to include into the template company logo and corporate styles as well.

Template Builder

Template Builder uploads the data from the Master Object, reports, and queries. All this information can be subsequently added to the template. Filter Box enables convenient selection of necessary data fields. Working Area is necessary for adding fields to the template. The end-user can choose the Type of the existing Template in the Template Builder by himself or herself.

Template Library

There are two template libraries that contain templates for the most common use cases for standard objects (for Release 7 and Release 8 of Conga Composer). The difference between releases is determined by text-based merge fields used in Release 8 (not supported for Release 7). For example, Conga Template Library for Composer Release 7 has Account, Contact and Opportunity sample templates for gathering data from these objects.

Solution packs

Solution packs are pre-built solutions, which can be set up in minutes. The only required  customization is to add styles and corporate logo into pre-built templates. After that it can be added to the page layout and used by end-users. Examples are “Composer”, “DocuSign” and “Adobe eSign” Solution packs.

Solution Manager

Solution Manager feature guides users through step-by-step process of creating and managing solutions. The process of creation a solution includes the following steps: creating a solution record, identifying master object, creating the solution button.  Then new or existing reports, queries, and templates can be added to the solution. Afterwards this solution can be tested and added to the page layout, from where end-users can access and run them and get the document in a specified format.

Conga Conductor

Conga Conductor is a paid add-on that provide flexible functionality for executing Conga Composer solutions in batches.

Salesforce reports and SOQL queries are used to determine records that should be included into the batch, the list view can be also used for selection. Resulting documents can be grouped in PDF file or ZIP for further automated downloading or distribution as Email attachments, eSignature documents, or Salesforce records attachments.

Solutions can be launched on demand (with a button); you can also schedule their run in background mode on a hourly, daily, weekly or monthly basis.

The single possible use restriction is that Conga Conductor consumes a large amount of API requests in a short period of time, due to this fact it is recommended to set API Floor value in Setup Tab. The other issue to consider is that scheduled Solutions can send a number of documents to external recipients, so this functionality should be tested carefully before activation.

Conga Workflow

Conga Workflow is a transaction based service to launch Conga Composer Solution (resulting in document creation and delivery) without any user participation. Salesforce Workflow rules with Outbound Messages are used as a starting point to initiate Conga Composer process.

Conga Workflow is designed to  be executed against individual records, the use of Conga Workflow with many records can result in hitting Conga system governor limit.

It is necessary to trigger a Salesforce Workflow rule to test the Conga Workflow. It is very important to verify the results, because all component processes of the solution should work properly (the way the data is gathered from report and queries; how it is merged in template; related activities are working as expected; the request is sending).

Use of Conga Workflow has limitations due to limits for API requests for Salesforce edition, number of outbound emails permitted in Salesforce, and a limit of 500 transactions per 24-hour period. Each of these limitations can influence the Workflow.

Conga Mail Merge      

Conga Mail Merge is a free Conga Composer add-on that simplifies merge mailings and requires additional installation. This wizard takes users through a process of document batches creation. Data is retrieved from Salesforce with search criteria, via Salesforce reports or Conga Queries and then merged to template (only Word template is accessible) to create documents. Conga Mail Merge can be launched from a button, link, custom tab, or from QuickMerge (this feature accelerates selections in Conga Mail Merge wizard, so that in certain cases users can download batches of documents in few clicks).

Conga ActionGrid

Conga ActionGrid is a feature that simplifies work with reports, lists and related lists of records by providing dynamic user interface with search boxes (for searching objects and particular records), pagination, and sorting option for lists of records. Conga ActionGrid enables also adding fields to lists of records.

ActionGrid tabs, related lists, and buttons can be created for selected objects.

Creating a solution with a solution manager

In order to create documents with Conga Composer, solutions should be prepared. As mentioned above, there are several ways of creating solutions. However,  the most convenient way for this purpose is to use Solution Manager.

Solution Manager provides quick and intuitive way to create Conga solutions and add them to the page layouts.

There are several steps to build solutions with Solution Manager:

  1. Create Solution record in the Conga Solutions tab.

  2. Once this record has been created (and master object has been chosen), further customizations can be applied to it, which will modify the Button URL.Conga solution screen.png

Solution Manager has also an significant option “Add a report to the solution”. “Add report data” button serves for this purpose, with selection whether to create new report via Report Builder, or include existing one.

Adding new report to solution.png

selecting sample record in the template builder.png

After the report has been added, the button URL contains ID of this report.

Another option to attach Conga Query to the solution is to adjust data gathering for the document. Existing Conga Query record can be used or a new record created. For creating a new record you can use Conga Query Edit wizard that allows you to add SOQL statement with name and description.

creating new Conga Query.png

 

adding Conga Query to the Solution.png

Advanced configuration options are available for adjusting SOQL statement with statement builder.

3)    The next step is to select sample record in order to build document template.

select sample.png

4)    When record is selected, existing or new template can be attached to

the document via  Conga Template Manager.

After these steps the solution is complete, but it can be enhanced with different parameters.

Solution Manager provides a significant set of parameters for further solution customizations, including data gathering, appearance, output, email, branding, formatting, control, and other, grouped by functionality. For instance, RTL font parameter enables right-to-left text orientation in Word templates for languages that are read  right-to-left.

After the solution is completed, it can be tested from the Solution Manager and used with Conga Workflow, Conga Conductor or on page layouts.

Conclusion

Conga Composer is a great a must-have Salesforce application that saves a lot of time for the users. It allows you to generate enterprise-grade documents, merge data from any external data sources (such as an ERP), standard, custom or Lightning Connect® object with Salesforce reports or SOQL queries, custom brand the Composer interface with your company logo (Enterprise Edition), etc. You can also automate distribution process and storage of generated documents, as well as trigger Conga Composer solutions with a Salesforce workflow rule.

The time spent by Salesforce admin to setup this app is definitely worth the outcome.

Demo video How to generate a document with Conga Composer

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