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Back to the Basics: What is a HotDocs Template?


Many of the posts on this blog assume you already have a basic understanding of the fundamental working parts of HotDocs. However, these “Back to the Basics” posts are specifically designed for those of you who are new to HotDocs, to discuss the basic features that you need to know about.

A HotDocs template is a pattern or a guide for your documents. It helps you create custom documents quickly and easily, using a simple question-and-answer interview process, instead of starting from scratch or editing an old document each time. Created in your word processor usingHotDocs Developer,a HotDocs template saves you time and money because it simplifies the document creation process dramatically.

For example, let’s say you work in human resources and need to create employment agreements for a batch of new company employees. You could create each document individually . . . or you create a HotDocs template and use that template to create an unlimited number of employment agreements in a much faster and much easier way.

Part of your template might look something like this:

HotDocs Template

Each piece of colored text is avariablethat will be filled in during the interview process. When you’re ready to complete the employment agreements, just fill in the HotDocs interview questions like this:

When you’re finished, the template generates a flawless document that can be saved in its original format (Word, WordPerfect, or PDF), edited, printed, emailed, sent to a document management system, etc. Thanks to your HotDocs template, you won’t have to deal with changing all the gender pronouns manually, making sure the dates are in the correct format, and checking to see if all the correct paragraphs have been included. And you definitely won’t be spending hours on proofreading and editing.

But wait—it gets even better. If you already have all your employees’ information stored in a database, your HotDocs template can connect to that database and fill in the interview automatically. You can also save all the answers you filled in and use them again later to create many documents beyond the employment agreement—such as offer letters, insurance applications, and much more.

To learn more about HotDocs templates and how they work,watch our free Intro to HotDocs webinar.

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