Template in a teacup
In publishing software, a template is a set of design specifications. This would include page layout (margins, number of columns, how graphics should be positioned in relation to text), which fonts are to be used and when, line spacing, table formatting and myriad other little details that add up to a professional, easy-to-read document.
The idea is to have a common set of rules that can be used across different documents.
And why would we want this?
Most businesses have a corporate image. This can include one or more logos, specific colors and specific type faces. As part of a company’s brand recognition, using templates in your documents allows for a continuity of image throughout all publications.
Another reason is speed. With a well-designed template, a document can be formatted to top-quality professional appearance quickly and easily. If every document published had to be formatted manually to match a common style, publishing costs would go up faster than the price of real estate in SoCal.
The process is simple: A document is either created directly from within a template, in which case the correct formatting can be applied as it is authored; or the document, already authored, has the template attributes applied to it.
Updates or refinements to your brand image are also easy to make with a template (another cost savings). Instead of making changes to every document, you can change the template and let the changes cascade through your documents automatically.
Invest in good template design for your publications department, whether you use Microsoft® Word, Adobe® FrameMaker®, Adobe InDesign®, or any other publishing tools, and ensure that your templates include instructions on how to use them!
The problems our clients can create for themselves when they don’t use templates range from comic to incredibly expensive, but that’s another blog on another day.