14 Design Document Templates for Effective Customer Communication
Ira Brooker Written: July 11th, 2019 Updated: October 13th, 2023
Paper documents are playing a smaller role than ever before in business communications, but that doesn’t mean that a reliable document management system is any less vital. In fact, as technologies and business practices continue to evolve, adapting the way your organization creates, designs, and distributes documents becomes more important than ever.
Using document design templates is one reliable way to keep your document production process moving smoothly and quickly while also saving time and resources that can be better channeled elsewhere. Choosing templates that meet your specific needs can be an intimidating task, so we’re giving you a closer look at some of the best document templates MHC has to offer.
How Document Design Contributes to Customer Success
Usable, intuitive design has always been an important factor in creating and distributing business documents. In the current workplace environment, that design has become more essential than ever. Technology is advancing rapidly, and the channels that organizations use for communication are expanding. Providing customers with communications that they can access via mobile phones, tablets, desktop computers, and other platforms ensures that your messages get where they need to go when they need to be there.
On the other side of the equation, the data that populates your documents is also coming from a wider variety of sources than ever before. Document design needs to be flexible and interactive enough to accommodate data generated by every tool and platform that feeds into your system, and to make that data uniform and understandable to the audiences that need to see it.
“ By centralizing control of the composition of their communications, our client was able to dynamically generate documents and communications to keep maintenance to a minimum. It allowed for fewer individuals to do the work, increasing productivity. When content can be generated dynamically and certain components of content can be reused, it allows organizations to make changes very quickly. One change can impact thousands and thousands of different communications because it’s done centrally. It’s controlled, reviewed, and approved before it’s distributed.
Through that power of dynamic communication, and managing communication templates centrally, the data being delivered to those customers was personalized. It adhered to compliance and regulatory needs, but it also was tailored and personalized. Delivering the information exactly to the specifications of that customer created a more positive experience for the customer. “
Build Document Design Templates With Document Automation
Managing document templates for a busy enterprise business can be a complex and challenging process. Designs need to be flexible enough to meet the specific needs of multiple customers, but also uniform enough to maintain consistency with your company’s branding and standards. Many of the same styles and design elements are reused across all of your organization’s documents, while the information they communicate changes depending on the target audience.
MHC software solutions help to automate your document design process from start to finish. Our solutions are developed to meet the needs of high-volume enterprise organizations with intuitive systems that are intuitive enough that even non-technical employees can create documents with ease. Our document templates and workflows make it simple to manage the creation, assembly, and delivery of complex document generation without the risk of incorrect or outdated information making it to your customers.
Inspire Your Design with 14 Top Document Templates
To maximize the benefits of a software design document template, you first need to understand what each template has to offer. We’ve put together some examples of real-world scenarios where MHC software solutions can help your organization build document templates that improve communications with your customers and business partners.
1. Portfolio Analysis
A portfolio analysis is a multi-faceted document used to evaluate the performance of an investment portfolio, as well as its potential risks and returns. A portfolio might include a wide range of investments, including stocks, bonds, and other options. Being able to analyze and refer to the portfolio document is important for investment managers.
A strong portfolio analysis document should include key calculations that reflect the ongoing performance of the portfolio, such as:
These calculations help to make the analysis document a useful at-a-glance reference for your investment manager.
Why Is Design Important for a Portfolio Analysis?
A document with as many facets as an investment portfolio needs to be easily readable, with clear divisions between different investments and interactive features that make it easy for customers to explore their portfolio on a more meaningful level.
This interactive portfolio analysis report allows customers to drill-down, sort, and filter their data in real time. Clickable tabs and controls let users reveal different sales aspects, apply filters, and generate traditional PDFs.
An explanation of benefits is an insurance document detailing the scope and costs of services received by customers. That includes details of which portions will be paid for by the insurance company and which by the customer.
Making these documents easy to read and navigate is crucial for both parties.
The exact details included in an explanation of benefits will vary depending on the organizations and policies involved, but they will commonly include data such as:
- Description of services
- The amount charged by the provider
- Allowed charges reimbursed to the provider
- Amount paid by the insurer
- Amount owed after insurance payments have been made
Why Is Design Important for a Portfolio Analysis?
As a customer-facing document, an explanation of benefits needs to be designed with self-service abilities in mind. Customers need to be able to access and navigate the document from a number of devices, including mobile phones, desktop computers, and tablets.
This digital Explanation of Benefits adapts to mobile, tablet, or PC devices. It empowers customers by providing self-services abilities and reduces call center workload. Clickable tabs and controls let users reveal different sales aspects, apply filters, and generate traditional PDFs.
- Declined payments
- Late or delayed payments
- Set-up and cancellation
Why Is Document Design Important for a Smart Telephone Invoice?
An interactive invoice designed for maximum compatibility with mobile technology simplifies and speeds up the invoicing process and also expands your potential for messaging. This document uses a digital marketing campaign to display the ad most relevant to the customer viewing it.
This sample shows a live interactive communication created and delivered using the MHC’s CCM software. It is designed to show how users can get more engaged with your organization and extract more information from these types of modern communications, when compared to traditional PDF documents.
A sales dashboard provides a graphical summary of a sales team’s performance. By illustrating those figures with visual graphics, a sales dashboard can provide an easier-to-understand presentation that helps managers and employees outside of the sales team to grasp key metrics and key performance indicators.
Those two aspects are an important element of any sales report. Key metrics establish the numbers and actions your organization needs to track in order to achieve specific goals and outcomes, while KPIs illustrate how successful those efforts have been. A strong sales report uses graphical representations to make those figures easier to understand and learn from.
Why Is Design Important for a Sales Dashboard?An effective sales dashboard requires both graphic design that is easy to read and understand and a user interface that is easy to navigate. Smart documents make it simple to tailor invoices to each client’s needs by plugging in reusable elements from an extensive template library.
In this example, Adventure Works gives a fully comprehensive, vertical business report. Different features are used to plot the digital elements from maps, graphs, and other charts.
5. Purchase Order Letter
A purchase order letter works as sort of a companion piece to an invoice. The purchase order letter is intended to confirm key details of a purchase and inform the seller about the buyer’s intentions for confirming a sale.
The exact format and contents of a purchase order letter can vary depending on industry standards and the items being purchased, but most will include elements such as:
- Contact information for the orderer
- Item description
- Physical description
- Price per item
- Purchase price
- Shipping method
- Shipping date
Why Is Design Important for a Purchase Order Letter?
Much like an invoice, a purchase order letter will ideally work easily with multiple devices, including mobile phones, tablets, and desktop computers. That requires flexible design and an interface that is easy to use across a variety of platforms.
A legal contract is any document that creates a mutual, binding, and legally enforceable agreement between two or more parties.
These documents often evolve over the course of a negotiation, making it crucial that they are easy to adapt without losing accuracy.
In order to be legally enforceable, some elements that need to be included in a legal contract include:
- Definitions of key terms
- Statement of purpose
- Obligations of each party involved
- Warranties for specific aspects of the agreement
- Boilerplate provisions
- Signature block
- Any necessary attachments or exhibits
Why Is Design Important for a Legal Contract?
Even more than most business documents, legal contracts require a high degree of personalization and adaptability. Smart design makes it easy to import documents from Word or PDF formats and populate them with relevant data and content.
This sample shows how users can create personalized correspondence in the MHC CCM platform in a user-friendly, guided manner that reduces the chance of errors and ensures compliance with standards.
Dynamic, periodically distributed newsletters created by a marketing team can be a hugely effective tool for communicating with customers and others outside of your immediate business.
An ideal marketing newsletter is fun, engaging, and speaks directly to the customer (or potential customer) in a tone and language that captures the tone and brand of your organization.
That means different things for different organizations, but an effective newsletter often includes elements such as FAQs, how-to guides, links to blog posts, looks behind the scenes at your organization, and seasonal or holiday content.
Why Is Design Important for a Marketing Newsletter?
With a flexible, easy to updated design system, marketing professionals can quickly create print-quality marketing correspondence and distribute across channels with a click of the mouse.
The MHC CCM platform allows users to craft communications in a user-friendly, guided manner, reducing the risk of human error and allowing for easy editing and fast distribution.
A customer dashboard collects customer data from a variety of sources and consolidates it into a single dashboard. That makes it easier to compare and analyze data related to multiple customers.
A customer dashboard should track key performance indicators that matter to your specific customer relationships. In many cases, those KPIs will include:
- Click-throughs and conversions
- Customer retention statistics
- Customer satisfaction rates
- Average time spent to resolve issues
- Quality of customer service
Why Is Design Important for a Customer Dashboard?
A smooth, clear interface is necessary to easily track your entire customer base. An ideal dashboard offers the functionality to monitor demographics, key markets, and sales all from one location.
This sample shows a live interactive communication created and delivered using the MHC’s CCM software. It is designed to show how users can get more engaged with your organization and extract more information from these types of modern communications when compared to traditional PDF documents.
A retail sales dashboard compiles data from multiple tools, sources, and points of sale and consolidates that information into a single dashboard. This makes it simpler to track retail sales patterns and develop strategies for the future.
The KPIs your business tracks in a retail sales dashboard will be determined by your specific products and industry. Some frequently tracked items include:
- Total sales
- Sales by collection or department
- Sales by region or country
- Conversion rates
- Return rates
Why Is Design Important for a Retail Sales Dashboard?Interactive design is essential for retailers who need to compare key data such as year-to-year sales, success in different markets, individual salespeople’s records, and more.
A sales dashboard helps a business get a clearer overall picture of their success in sales by consolidating data from multiple sources and across multiple platforms. A single dashboard makes it easier to visualize the true impacts of each data point.
An organization might opt to create multiple sales dashboards measuring everything from hard data to intra-office competitions. That could include such metrics as:
- Daily sales activities
- Sales opportunities
- Product or service performance
- Sales competitions
Why Is Design Important for a Sales Opportunities Dashboard?
Interactive design makes it easier for businesses to compare key data generated by multiple platforms and tools. That consolidated picture is vital for managing a wide-ranging sales landscape.
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11. Real Estate DocumentsReal estate is an ever-changing industry that relies on up-to-the-minute data and quick action. That requires interactive documents that can be easily edited, updated, and shared. Keeping careful records is also crucial for resolving legal disputes and maintaining compliance with state and local regulations. Looking just at the rental industry, some of the many documents a landlord needs to have on hand include:
- Rental applications
- Tenant screening documents
- Rental agreements
- Move-in and move-out checklists
- Welcome and move-out letters
- Policy agreements
Why Is Design Important for Real Estate Documents?
Being able to quickly and accurately compare prices, locations, agent performance, and other factors can mean the difference between a successful deal and a missed opportunity.
12. Invoice Analytics
Effective analytics require supporting documents that can help to verify information, establish patterns, and inform decisions moving ahead. Some of those documents include:
- Purchase orders
- Advance shipping notices (ASN)
- Receiving documents
- Terms and conditions documents
- W-9s for independent contractors
Why Is Design Important for Invoice Analytics?
Being able to consolidate data pulled from multiple platforms into a single, easy-to-reference source of truth creates a more reliable picture of your invoice processing that can inform future decisions.
Providing visual representations of sales data is one of the most effective ways of communicating results to internal and external stakeholders. Charts, graphs, and other illustrations play a key role in helping your sales team make informed decisions for the future.
The data recorded in a sales chart will vary depending on your industry, products, and goals, but some commonly recorded KPIs include:
- Sales targets
- Customer lifetime values
- Customer acquisition costs
- Average revenue per unit
- Pipeline value forecasts
- Sales growth between periods
Why Is Design Important for Sales Charts?
Beyond the need for sales charts and graphs to be visually appealing and eye-catching, they also need to draw data from a range of sources and platforms. Interactive elements such as clickable filters can make these charts all the more effective.
Being able to produce, process, and distribute financial documents using a speedy, error-free process is crucial to any business’s long-term viability, and smart design plays a big part in making that possible.
While your specifics may vary, there are some core financial documents that most organizations should always have on hand, including:
- Balance sheets
- Assets and liabilities
- Income and expenditures
- Sales activities
- Cash flow statements
Why Is Design Important for Financial Documents?
Like legal documents, financial materials need to be easy to update, amend, and edit without impacting the accuracy of their data. That includes pulling data from multiple sources and being able to display it on a variety of platforms.
Upgrade Your Customer Communications with MHC
Using automated design document templates is an effective way to improve how your business communicates with clients. MHC offers efficient design tools that make it easier to ensure that your documents are accurate, effective, and on time.
We offer automated document assembly, customer communications management software, and other systems that can streamline and simplify the way your business produces and distributes key documents. Contact us today to schedule a demonstration of our industry-leading document solutions!