PowerPoint templates in big companies are a mess. When thousands of people start sharing PowerPoint files it will take less than 3 months for a corporate template to be vanished due to the many personal modifications and mistakes people make. Here is a survival guide.

  • Create a simple template
    • Use a PowerPoint expert to create it, not an Adobe Illustrator master, because you need to know how to set default colors, shapes, text boxes, page numbers, left-to-right orientation, etc.
    • Create some sort of a box of drawing guides to limit the canvas and leave white space around the edges. Many people might ignore it, but they will have a mental urge to put things inside that box. Put the drawing guides on the master slide so they can't be moved by accident.
    • Keep it super simple, I would go for one title slide and one regular slide maybe a separator
  • Teach hygiene (this is the hard part). Ask employees every time they create a new presentation to start with this template. Every time. Even if they want to reuse 90% of an existing deck, have them open the clean template, copy paste the charts from the old file into it and save the file.

I wonder whether it is possible to do the hygiene thing with a macro button in PowerPoint automatically, it must be.

Given the above mess, you will understand why it is not possible to modify the slide template in my presentation app SlideMagic.

Painting via WikiPedia

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