With the Built-In PDF Writer in CDM+, It's Easy Being Green!

(and it's quick and cost effective, too)

This week Americans experienced yet another postage price increase. The Internet and email have become not simply convenient and efficient ways of communication, they have also become increasingly cost effective. We all look for ways to cut costs, and sending out reports and newsletters electronically is an easy way of doing it. However, not all computers are created equal. Not everyone has the same word processing or spreadsheet program. Not all operating systems have the same fonts as the person had when creating the document. How then can we consistently send out information that we know will be viewed and seen as intended?

In 1993 Adobe Systems developed a file format for document exchange called Portable Document Format (PDF). This technology has become the industry standard for producing documents that can be read by any computer. Today, we do not stop and worry about someone not being able to open a PDF document. If for some reason they cannot, the software to access it is free and readily available from the Adobe website. If you do not use the PDF format, you run the risk that your document may not be accessible or readable by the recipient. How often do you get email attachments of Word or Excel documents that are not compatible with the version of that software you’re running? Or, you open the document only to be told that the software is making a font substitution? The situation is further complicated when you need to send reports from CDM+ to others who do not have access to CDM+. What to do?

One of the key features of CDM+ Enhanced Notices is the ability to create CDM+ reports in PDF format. With this feature, a new option—PDF—appears when you select Print. This is a sixth option in addition to the five you already had: Screen, Printer, Report File, Text File and Clipboard. By choosing the PDF icon you can name and save the report electronically. This document can then be emailed or posted on your website.

In addition to printing a PDF, advanced page settings give you the ability to convert the PDF to a JPEG, convert HTTP addresses in the document to hot links, set keywords and a subject for the document, control viewer options such as fit to window and hide toolbars, and set security levels so only those with a password you establish can view and even modify the document.

For those CDM+ users using the Contributions program with Enhanced Notices, you can easily email giving statements. This unique feature sends a personalized email with an attached giving statement PDF. For more information on this feature, review the February 4, 2009 CDM+ Connection at http://www.cdmplus.com/connection/2009.02.04.pdf.

We’re all hearing about the push to “Go Green.” CDM+ can help! Print important reports as PDFs to file electronically rather than paper copies to put in a file cabinet. Law and accounting firms adopted this “paperless office” practice several years ago. Any report that you may print from CDM+ and stick in a file folder can be just as easily stored as a PDF on your hard drive or a server. For security reasons, copy these files to a CD or memory stick. As PDF documents they will be more readily available for years to come than papers buried in a box in the back of a closet.

Using the built-in PDF writer in CDM+ is easy and efficient. It can help save time and money and assure that we are being good stewards of our earth’s limited resources.