Solid product that could use some tuneups
Updated October 23, 2015

Solid product that could use some tuneups

Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 8 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source

Overall Satisfaction with XaitPorter

XaitPorter is currently used primarily for proposal development, but expanding into documentation development.
  • PDF output is clean and good.
  • Workflow is good.
  • Dashboard is good.
  • It would be helpful to improve functions used to organize and reorganize sections. They work fine, but could be retooled for ease of use. Simple drag-drop over the tree-view from the primary navigator (not only in the dedicated dialog for reordering sections) would be very good. It would be good to support simple flagging or tagging of sections to indicate whatever is meaningful to the user (e.g., to flag a section as imported text that needs formatting, or a section that is high priority for review). The icons do change to indicate predefined workflow states (e.g. approved), but there isn't support for a user-defined tag, perhaps with the ability to filter by tag as many newer applications can do. That would be handy. These aren't criticisms so much as product enhancement suggestions.
  • The editor is ok but could be tuned up a bit. For example, styles in the toolbar dropdown apply only to the whole paragraph. It's hard to indent text. The button tool doesn't consistently remove the button attribute on an existing button; works sometimes, sometimes not. Little stuff. Overall it's adequate for text creation.
  • The process of defining templates and styles appears to be a black art. While it's something you don't do often, it should be simplified and better exposed to ordinary admins.
  • The ability to have more than one section open at a time in the editor would be fantastic. Great productivity tool.
  • Word import/export could be cleaner.
  • The ability to export to html with user-defined style sheets would open new markets for Xait. If the product had that, we'd use Xait to maintain our online help site too.
  • The ability to link to externally stored images rather than lock them inside the Xait library would be huge, as we've expressed to the support team. We manage hundreds of images (diagrams, screen shots etc.) that are used throughout the company, not just for Xait documents. We would like to store them on a file system (e.g. Dropbox) and have them update into Xait automatically when the master copy is modified. This is a very important capability, though in fairness we didn't find it in other products either. Explicit support for Dropbox/Google Drive/Box would be one way, but dynamic linking a la Microsoft Word would be fine, maybe even better.
  • Too soon to tell. Right now we're still at the near end of the value chain - it still seems expensive given the outputs to date. But we have a lower proposal volume than some companies, so you need to factor that in.
  • Also, the named user licensing is restrictive and problematic in a small company where people perform multiple roles and may dip in and out of the proposal development process over a period of weeks or months. A concurrent user model would be much, much better for us, though I understand you'd need to figure out a way to handle email notifications.
We looked at every major product and some newer ones. We liked Xait's general robustness and handling of images (despite the issue about the internal library), as well as the output quality in PDF. Also, we're a Mac shop so we could not be chained to a Windows editor.
Xait is well suited to its primary purpose of proposal writing. It's less of a good choice for a more general purpose document production tool.