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Sunday, June 10, 2012

Conga Composer - A how to do guide for first time users (2) (Basic Use)

In my last blog we went about the process of installation of Conga Composer in your Org from scratch.
Now comes the real thing using Conga Composer for your various reporting and document generation needs.
Once installation is complete you will notice that a button with following particulars has been added to most of the standard/native objects in your org:-
1. Label -Conga Composer
2. Name- Conga_Mail_Merge
Please refer to the screenshot below for clarity:-

With exception of some standards objects the above button is added to all the standard objects. Standard objects in which the above button is not added automatically:-
1. Asset
2. Product
3. Ideas
4. Campaign
5. Campaign Member
6. Task
Now lets analyze this button a bit closely. For that we can investigate the details of this button from the button detail page.

The button URL of the Conga Button is  -{!API.Session_ID}&serverUrl={!API.Partner_Server_URL_80}&id={!Account.Id}
The above is the very basic "Conga Button" which has the following components :-
1. The URL of Conga Server -
2. The parameters which accompany this button viz. 
a. Sessionid - Provides the sessionid of the active salesforce session provided by the global variable -     !API.Session_ID
b. serverURL - This is the URL of the salesforce org which is unique for each org - furnished by -{!API.Partner_Server_URL_80}
c. id - This is the id of the master object through which all the data / information will be fetched.
d. There will be other parameters too like reportid and queryid which we will take up when we dig deeper into queries and reports as a data source.
Now let try to use this button and see what data is returned using the above button - notice the above button is placed on account object hence the data returns will that of the account record corresponding to the id specified in the button URL . Lets put the button on the account detail page layout and navigate to an account record. 

Now lets click on the "Conga Composer" button and see what happens.When we click the button the following screen appears:-

The "View Data" link on the above screen shows you the data which is available for generating document and /or reports.When we click on "View Data" link the available data in the form of an excel is downloaded to your system/ computer . For Clarity refer to the following screenshots.

When you save the excel as prompted by the above screen the following data is shown in the form of an excel. 

In the above screen shot the data of the master object which is available for merge and document generation is shown.

 In the above screen shot the data of the Org  (Like orgid, address,etc) which is available for merge and document generation is shown

 In the above screen shot the data of the Logged-in User  (Like username, address,etc) which is available for merge and document generation is shown

The column headings in the above generated excels is used for creating the word template for creating merge documents. We will dive into "Template Creation" in my next blog in this series.


Saturday, June 2, 2012

Conga Composer - A how to do guide for first time users

What is Conga Composer?
As per the Official Site of Conga Composer - Conga Composer is the most popular document generation and reporting solution for Salesforce. With Conga Composer, Salesforce user and administrators are more productive, more in control, and more effective with everything they do.
Very truly so it provides the flexibility which at times is not available when using Salesforce's standard mail merge functionality. The data which one can pull out with Conga is incredible
The positives of using Conga are innumerable:-
1. Huge data set is at one's disposal
2. One can summarize data
3. Write complex queries for deriving data in a particular condition
4. Since one can upload a wide variety of documents created using word and excel so all the formatting richness provided by MS office can also be availed of in Conga.
5. Rapid report generation ( Though there is an initial learning curve)
So far so good but if you are using Conga for the first time the ride is bit bumpy and hence I will try to pen a route which will prove to be less hassle-some,but  that at no point means that the documentation provided by Conga is not good - its excellent. Its just that we humans are a bit lazy by nature and prefer quick-fix recipes ( at least I fall in that category at times) .
Hence let me put together what needs to be done from scratch to get Conga Up and running.
The steps for preparing (Having all the Packages installed for generating documents with Conga) the salesforce org are as follows:-
1. You need to go to AppExchange  - for "Conga". In the search results click for the app named "Conga Composer" . Alternatively just use the following link:-

2. Now since you have found the Conga App - click on the "get It now" button. Follow the wizard . If you already have a salesforce org click the options a) that you have a salesforce account b) you are the administrator  c) you want to install Conga in your existing production org (which may be your developer org too). You may change responses depending upon what you want to do.

3.Once you provide the credentials of the org where you want to install Conga you will be redirected to page which provides information about the application being installed and  the details of the org provided by you. Refer to the attached screenshot for clarity:-
Click on the install button to complete the installation and follow the installation wizard. Once installation is complete you will see that "Conga Composer" is shown in the drop down of apps in your salesforce org. See the attached diagram for clarity.
4. Once installation is complete and you click on the "All Tabs" you will notice two tabs have been added to your org viz:-
     a. Conga Mail Merge
     b. Conga Templates (v5)
Please refer to the attached screenshot.

5. In order to exploit the full prowess of  "Conga Composer" you will need "Conga Queries" and "Conga Query Manager". In order to find "Query Manager" follow the this link - here you will find listings of all the sister products of Conga. Click on "Get it now" linl next to "Conga Query Manager". You will be redirected to the "Salesforce Login Page" . Provide the credentials and follow the "Query Manager Installation" wizard.Refer to the attached screenshot.
Once the installation is complete , click on the "All tabs" again. You will notice another tab by the name "Conga Queries" has been added to your org. Refer to the screenshot for clarity.
Now we have everything ready to dive into "Generation of documents and /or Reporting" using Conga Composer. That we will cover in a follow-up blog of mine. Watch this space for a follow on this one ....