Microsoft’s New Template Gallery Offers Microsoft Office Users Hundreds of Free Internet-based Templates

REDMOND, Wash., July 19, 2000 — Usually, the simplest way to create a new document is to build on an existing sample document. Otherwise, without knowing common, professional formats, creating resumes, marketing plans, financial statements, customer thank-you letters and similar documents can be time-consuming and overwhelming. Microsoft has just made these tasks much easier by delivering hundreds of specialized templates as free downloads for Microsoft Office users from Microsoft’s Office Update Web site at http://office.microsoft.com/TemplateGallery/ . The templates tightly integrate with Microsoft Office and are provided by industry-leading content providers.

“The new Template Gallery on Office Update offers specialized, high-quality and professional templates that are especially useful for Office small-business and home users, who typically don’t have their own library of specialized documents,”
said Andrew Kwatinetz, group program manager, Microsoft Office.
“This new service increases the value of Microsoft Office by offering additional, customized content over the Internet. The template’s tight integration with Office increases the productivity of Office users and represents the latest step in our ongoing strategy of extending the value of Office through integration with Internet-based services.”

Hundreds of Templates Available for Office Users

Templates are one of the most requested features on Office Update, and the initial templates in the Template Gallery were gathered based on customer feedback. Users can request additional templates in the Suggestion/Feedback area of the Template Gallery, and Microsoft will continue to add new templates to the site.

The new templates are specialized for specific categories such as staffing and management, legal, marketing, finance, business forms, business stationery and resumes. Using the Template Gallery, a small-business owner can create business proposals, collection letters, contracts, organizational announcements, or responses to customer complaints. Each category also contains customized content for that category. For example, instead of just a few basic resume templates, the Template Gallery includes dozens of resume templates for job seekers of specific occupations, such as customer service, sales or teaching; or for specific situations, such as promotions or a recent college graduation.

The templates tightly integrate with Microsoft Office 2000 or Office 97, and users can edit each of the templates directly from the Internet into the appropriate Office application. For example, a resume created in Microsoft Word can be customized with one click by clicking on an
“Edit in Microsoft Word”
button that appears next to the template. Users can save the templates on their own PCs or return to Office Update to work with the ever-growing number of templates that Microsoft will be adding to the site.

Partnering with Top Content Experts

To create the hundreds of templates now available, Microsoft turned to a blue-ribbon team of strategic partners, including McGraw-Hill, West Group’s Lawoffice.com, Avery Dennison, John Wiley & Sons, Career Press and Round Lake Publishing. Each of the content providers is a recognized industry leader for the content areas it is providing for the Template Gallery. For example, McGraw-Hill is providing business letters, resumes and cover letters, and Lawoffice.com is providing legal forms and documents as well as connecting Office customers to the local legal counsel who can provide legal advice in using the forms. Avery Dennison is offering templates that work with popular Avery brand labels and other printing supplies, ranging from business cards to CD-ROM labels.

eServices Increasingly Popular With Office Users

Microsoft first introduced eServices for Office users on its Office Update Web site in December 1999. Since then, the services have grown in popularity with Office users, and more than two million Office users visit the Office Update site each month. Current eServices available include Internet postage; Web site hosting; unified messaging; online file storage and online training for Office applications; Office multimedia (clip art, pictures and sounds); online reference tools such as an encyclopedia, maps and driving directions; and information on how to start a Web business.