Document merge

Updated 2 months ago

Document merge is Beacon's version of mail merge. With document merge, you can automatically generate documents for records in Beacon, at the click of a button.

You can generate just one document, or thousands of documents in seconds - which is most commonly useful for sending letters to your supporters, such as:

  • Donation acknowledgements
  • Welcome packs

link How it works

In Beacon, you need to set up a document "template" - this is just a regular Word document, but with "merge tags" in the relevant places. For example:

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You can then automatically generate Word documents using this template. In this example, we're sending donation acknowledgements, so we'll want to create one document per payment in Beacon.

link Generating individual documents

To generate a document for an individual record, click the document merge icon in the top right when viewing a record:

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Choose the template you'd like to generate a document with, and then click generate.

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help_outline Don't see a template in the drop-down list? It's likely that the template's record type is different to the record you're currently viewing.

link Generating in bulk

You can also generate documents in bulk. That is - if you had a list of payments that you wanted to generate acknowledgements for, you could generate a ZIP file containing all of the generated documents.

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After generating, you can download a ZIP file containing all of the documents:

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Optionally, you can choose to auto-log activities to the timeline, with the attached file, when documents are generated: (works for single and bulk generation)

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link Creating templates

To create your document template, head over to Settings > Documents in your sidebar, and upload any word document you like as your template.

link Merge tags

Beacon will automatically detect the merge tags in your template, and allow you to set "default values" for each tag - which will be used if the data isn't saved on a record in Beacon:

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help_outline Tip: You can use the "cheat sheet" to get a list of all merge tags available.

link Activity logging

Optionally, you can choose an activity type that you'd like to automatically log to the timeline when the document is generated:

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help_outline The activity is logged to the timeline of the record you generate the document for, which isn't necessarily the associated person record.

link Frequently asked questions

link Is it possible to show the date the document was created automatically?

Yes! Use the {generated_at} merge tag for this.

link How can I print all my files at once?

There's a variety of methods for bulk printing your generated files. See our handy guide to find a method that works for you.


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