In-depth functionality: Text Expressions

Blog 6 min.

Text Expressions can be part of your product structure. With this functionality you can have Elfsquad concatenate all the desired texts to- or inside a configuration to dynamically build up a text or memo. The dynamic part could for example be, the chosen options within the configuration, the configured dimensions, or information that is available in the background of the chosen options. With the Text Expressions functionality Elfsquad gives you the possibility to link all the dynamic information you want into one expression.


We developed this functionality because a lot of (potential) customers asked if it was possbileto generate a dynamic article code. For example: [width][length][height][type] etc. We also saw that a lot of customers are adding configuration details in memo and text fields within their ERP system. Since we recognized that a large part of our installed base and potential customers had the need for dynamically building article codes but also filling extra text fields that are needed later on in their processes, we decided to develop it. 

Main advantages

Less implementation effort

The functionality is really straight forward and works similar to the way you set up expressions for calculated values. In a few steps, you create the text you want to see in the configurator or that should be send to another application. 

And for the readers that already know the quotation document functionality; it is not necessary to create all kinds of different categories for your quotation document in order to have the text you want. 

For example, a specific block with text is changing for every machine that you configure. However, only a few words are changing. It would be possible to create a category for every word. But it would be even better and more user friendly to create the text dynamically within the configuration itself. In this case you only have to use one category to display the text on the quote.

Create work instructions automatically

Work instructions for every configuration can be created automatically as well. After creating them within Elfsquad, it is possible to send them with the other details of the configuration to ERP or another external system in order to have the work instruction where you need it. 

Therefore, you avoid adding or editing the work instructions for every order manually. We see a lot of situations where the work instructions in ERP are a text template and the specifications for example, should be filled in manually by searching in the lines for the right information.


Creating a dynamic article code of the configuration

Within the manufacturing industry you want to deliver every wish the end-customer has. So for example, the conveyor’s length can range from 2000 to 6000. This would result in  a lot of different bills of materials. As you may already know, with Elfsquad it is not needed to pre-define all these different bills of materials upfront. However, it could still be convenient to have the article code structure you used before ready. So for example, your article code looked like this [width][length][height][type] etc. With the Text Expression functionality you can still create the code and it is not needed to pre-define all the bills of materials upfront anymore.

Creating dynamic group names within your configuration

For example, you’re using the Linked Configurations functionality and one of your machines or conveyors can be added multiple times into the configuration model. With the Text Experssion functionality used in the Configuration Name editor you can easily generate the names of all the same configurations dynamically.

Adding the details of your bill of material article easily

For example, in the bill of material section in the configuration model in Elfsquad, there is a bill of material article / row that calculates the square meters of the needed material. However, in order to produce the right product, you need to know what the width and length of the product is. With the text expression functionality you can add this to this specific Bill of material article / row in the structure. By sending it to ERP or another external application later on, the information you need is right there.

More information during the configuration process

For example, within your configuration model, the user has to fill in the dimensions he or she prefers. You have restricted the maximum value of the field based on a previous choice. You want to inform the user what the current maximum value is. 

With a Text expression you can add an extra information field into your product structure that gives the dynamic maximum value based on the choice the user makes at that moment.


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