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mseibert.pngThis is a guest post by Stefan Kleineikenscheidt of K15t Software, one of Atlassian’s official partners. This post takes a deep look into Scroll Office, a Confluence plugin that allows you to collaborate and author your technical project documentation in the wiki and generate beautifully styled Word documents with a single click.

Author in the wiki. Style with Word.

Do you use a wiki or Microsoft Word for your documentation? A wiki like Confluence is often the tool of choice for technical writers for collaborating on and authoring documents. Multiple authors can update the most current version of a document online without versions getting lost in email inboxes. However, Microsoft Word is still widely used in most organizations for storing and exchanging documents. Some organizations mandate special Word templates for projects’ deliverables and customer facing documents. Word is still a great tool for styling and printing documents to paper.

Ideally you want to author content in the wiki and use Word for storing, exchanging and printing documents. If you have tried this, you know that this is not easy. The Export to Word functionality in Confluence only exports single pages and has limited styling options.

Scroll Office is the solution. Collaborate and author all your content in your wiki, and generate a properly formatted Word document to store, exchange and print information. Scroll Office uses Word files and their styling information as templates to output native Word 2007 documents having the desired look.

Give me the skinny

Using Scroll Office with Confluence you can:

  • Define Word styles for headings, paragraphs, etc
  • Create standard Word elements such as title pages, table of contents, page headers/footers
  • Embed static text to appear in every exported document such as disclaimers or copyright notices
  • Include metadata from Confluence through placeholders
  • Support for many third party plugins such as Gliffy and Balsamiq
  • Runs on Confluence, Confluence Hosted and JIRA Studio
  • Named-user licensing

Scroll Office Features

1. Export Confluence Pages Using Word Templates

Scroll Office replaces the Export to Word option in your Confluence pages’ Tools menu. Now you can create a Word document with a single click:

  1. Navigate to the Tools menu
  2. Click the new 1-click icon option provided by Scroll Office (blue arrow). This will use your last export settings.
  3. scroll_menu.jpg

  4. Alternatively, click on the new Export to Word action provided by Scroll Office (red arrow in image above). This will launch a settings dialog, where you can select the Word template you wish to apply to your Confluence content, as well as the pages you wish to export.

scroll_settings.jpg
scroll_export.jpg

2. Create Your Own Styled Templates

Scroll Office is bundled with a Word template for you to get started. In order to create documents using your own styles, simply upload a Word file containing your style definitions to Confluence.

You can upload the Word file as Confluence site template, making it available in every Confluence space. Alternatively, you can upload Word templates as a Confluence space template. This feature makes Confluence an incredibly powerful content generation tool. It’s now incredibly easy to output your wiki content with your company’s mandated style guidelines.

If you are a law or consultancy firm using Confluence as an intranet to create client-facing documentation, you can now apply a client-specific Word template to your wiki pages in a few simple clicks.

Technical and software development teams that are using Confluence for technical documentation can now apply a different Word template to each of their individual products’ documentation spaces.

Scroll Office bridges the gap between content authoring the wiki and styling in Microsoft Word.

Look at What Can be Achieved

For additional inspiration about what’s possible with Word and Scroll Office, have a look at the following screenshots from our template library:

The Classic Manual template is intended for printed manuals, like user guides or administration guides (click to enlarge):

classic_manual.jpg

The 2-Column Report template is intended for internal reports or research papers (click to enlarge):

These templates may also serve as a basis for your own custom themes. We have decided to release the templates on the template library under a Creative Commons license, so that they can be used and modified. Often it is enough to replace an icon or change the color of the headings and voila you have a new pretty template.

3. Named-user Licensing

To make it easier for small teams to get started with Scroll Office, we have introduced the named licensing scheme. This means it is possible to install a Scroll Office license for 25 users on a Confluence installation with a larger license.

Get Started for FREE

Try it out right now on Scroll Office demo Confluence site.

Want to test it on your own content? Scroll Office is available for download on the Atlassian Plugin Exchange. Once installed, sign-up for a free 30-day evaluation license.

We Listen

We are interested in your feedback, please try out Scroll Office and let us know via our forums what you like and what you think is missing.

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