How can organizations create their own DITA table templates?

Creating DITA table templates allows organizations to establish consistent and standardized table structures for their content. These templates serve as predefined models that authors can use to ensure uniformity in how tables are formatted and presented. Developing DITA table templates is a key aspect of content management within DITA-based documentation processes.

Organizations can create DITA table templates by defining table structure, setting styling guidelines, including metadata, considering accessibility, defining table types, and documenting the template.

Define Table Structure:

Determine the essential components of tables that should remain consistent across documents. This includes deciding on the number and order of columns, header cells, and body cells.

Set Styling Guidelines:

Establish styling and formatting guidelines for elements within the table, such as fonts, colors, borders, padding, and alignment.

Include Metadata:

Decide on the metadata that should accompany tables, such as titles, captions, and other information. This metadata might be provided through attributes or DITA elements.

Accessibility Considerations:

Ensure that the templates follow accessibility best practices, such as using appropriate semantic elements, providing alternative text for images, and ensuring proper header cells for data tables.

Table Types:

Depending on an organization’s needs, they can create different templates for various types of tables, such as data tables, comparison tables, or pricing tables.

Document and Communicate:

Document the templates’ structure, styling, and metadata requirements in an organization’s DITA documentation guidelines or style guide. Ensure that content creators are aware of these templates and guidelines.


An organization frequently uses pricing tables in its product documentation. The organization can create a DITA table template for pricing tables that ensures consistency across all documents.

            <title>Product Pricing</title> <!-- Table title -->
            <desc>This table provides pricing information for our products.</desc> <!-- Description -->
                <entry>Product Name</entry> <!-- Column headers -->
                <entry><b>Product A</b></entry> <!-- Use bold text for product names -->
                <entry>In stock</entry>
                <entry><b>Product B</b></entry>
                <entry>Out of stock</entry>

In this example, the organization has established a pricing table template that includes consistent elements like a title, description, header cells, and styling guidelines for product names. Authors can use this template to create pricing tables in various documents while maintaining uniformity in presentation and content structure.