Custom add-ins

PowerPoint automation

PowerPoint is regularly used to create a large collection of presentations and visual documents in organisations across the globe. While PowerPoint is a great tool for the job, users often find themselves executing repetitive tasks and wasting time on simple actions at scale. Our PowerPoint automation service offers a solution in the form of a custom add-in or a macro.

A custom solution for unique challenges

We start by understanding the problem your users are facing. The challenge might be as simple as copying speaker notes from one presentation to another en masse, remapping colours, locking proprietary assets for external distribution, or customising PowerPoint’s user interface to better suit your needs. A custom solution can also help you migrate thousands of legacy slides to an up-to-date corporate template, saving your users time, while helping with brand consistency.

Take a look at our free PowerPoint productivity tool, BrightSlide, to get a glimpse into how PowerPoint can be extended with a VBA add-in.

Our Process

01 | Problem discovery

Working together with you, we start by understanding the problem your users are facing, defining the success criteria for the solution in the process.

02 | Solution specification

We investigate the problem and specify a feature, or a set of features, that solves the problem.

03 | Design & prototyping

At the design stage, we dive into what the solution will look like, and how the solution will work from a technical perspective. If the solution requires a user interface, we’ll make a prototype and conduct testing to make sure it’s intuitive and easy to use.

04 | Solution development

Once we know the what and the how, we move on to making the solution a reality, conducting continuous quality assurance in the process.

05 | Delivery & deployment

Once the solution is ready, we work with you to deploy the solution in your organisation.

Each automation solution is unique. Please get in touch to discuss a quote for your solution.


Microsoft Office automation uses VBA (Visual Basic for Applications) at its core. This is supported by PowerPoint, Excel and Word on Windows and macOS. It’s not supported by other platforms.

An add-in is installed on your computer and its functionality is available for all files you open. BrightSlide is a great example. A macro is a piece of VBA code that resides inside your Office file and provides access to your automation features only when that file is open.

We can develop your automation solution either as an add-in or embed it within your Office file — such as a PowerPoint presentation, Excel workbook, or Word document. Add-ins need to be installed, but we can develop them so that they don’t need IT administrator intervention. The embedded approach doesn’t require installation, but your automation functionality is only available when the macro-enabled file is open.

We’ve put together a calculator extension for PowerPoint, which is ideal for testing if your organisation currently allows for automation to be run.

The Microsoft Office suite of apps all support VBA so it’s possible to develop solutions for the desktop versions of these apps, i.e. Windows and macOS. However, as a presentation design agency we are focused towards PowerPoint.

In general, we recommend targeting Microsoft 365 releases or the latest perpetual release. These include annual, semi-annual and monthly channels and perpetual releases such as Office 2019 & 2021. If you need to target older versions, we can check to see if they are compatible with your needs.

Yes. Once your custom solution has been developed you can come back to us at any time to request new features, tweaks to existing functionality and bug fixes should any arise after initial testing, validation and Quality Assurance.

It depends if your initial contract allows this but if you have the source code and the rights to change it then we can take it to the next level for you.

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BrightCarbon are a great partner in our growth. They are great to work with, very consultative, and professional. I could not recommend working with them more highly.

Neil Davidson Deltek