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Issues surrounding the Primary Contact for an Opportunity

  • 16 June 2022
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So, we have a pipeline which tracks a course at our college through an ‘academic pipeline’. The Course is an Opportunity Record, The Tutor for that Course is the Primary Contact, and then the students on that Course are Related Person Records.

Two issues have come up:

  • We have Courses that are co-taught, and so ideally would have two Primary Contacts.
  • Some of our organisation’s staff (including myself) also act as Tutors on Courses, but we do not appear as Person Records, and so can’t be added as Primary Contacts.


Does anyone have any suggestions as to how we might resolve these issues?

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Best answer by Michelle from Copper 16 June 2022, 21:25

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Hi @Rob Jones at ASE, thanks for posting!  I think Connect Fields might be a good option for you. This is a type of custom field that allows you to define relationships between different records in Copper. So you can create a Connect Field to link Tutors to their Courses, or to link Students to their Courses.

Let’s take a look in the context of your two bullet points -

 

  • We have Courses that are co-taught, and so ideally would have two Primary Contacts.

You are correct that you can only have one Primary Contact on a Course/Opportunity. But Connect Fields allow you to have multiple People linked at the same time. Here’s an example:

In this example, Ray Faulkner is the Primary Contact (maybe he’s the head tutor?). I’ve also added Michelle Lee under the Tutors connect field because she is a co-tutor for that course.

If I open up either Tutor, we’ll also see a list of the Course they were Tutors for.

 

Let’s go through your other question before we talk about how to set up a Connect Field.

 

  • Some of our organisation’s staff (including myself) also act as Tutors on Courses, but we do not appear as Person Records, and so can’t be added as Primary Contacts.

This is a great question. You have two options here, depending on how you want to set it up.

  1. Add those staff members as People in Copper - this will allow you to add them as a Primary Contact, a Related Person, or - if you build the Connect Field - as a Tutor. When you add a Person who is also a user, the system will not sync their emails so you don’t have to worry about internal emails being added. But it will sync their internal Calendar Events. If you want to avoid that, you can leave their email address blank when you create them as a Person. I also suggest adding some indicator to show that they’re internal - in the example below I put (internal staff) in the name.

     

  2. Alternatively, you can set up a separate Connect Field that specifically can only link to other Copper users. So instead of a single connect field for “Tutors” you would have one for “Tutors (external)” and a separate one for “Tutors (internal)”. This means you don’t have to add your users as People. But personally I would recommend option #1 over this one to avoid having extra fields.

 

Ok great, so how do we set up a Connect Field?

  1. Go to Settings > Customize > Manage Fields on Records > Opportunities > Create Field.
  2. Select Connect Field as the Field Type. For Relationship, select Custom Relationship.
  3. In the left side box, select what the field name should be on the Course/Opportunity (“Tutor” or “Tutors”) and what kind of record it should link to (People). In the right side box you’ll choose what the link should be called when you open up a Person (“Tutor for” in this case).
  4. Click Create Field. Next time you open a Course / Opportunity, you’ll see a field for Tutor. And next time you open up a Person, you’ll see a field for Tutor For.

 

 

 

Some notes on Connect Fields

Connect Fields are great for marking relationships but they do come with some limitations - 

  • These connections would exist in addition to the Primary Contact, Related People, etc. So you will have to fill them out manually.
  • You cannot import or export Connect Fields
  • Connect Fields won’t work with workflow automation
  • Connect Fields can’t be pulled into our reporting system

If these are not dealbreakers for you then they might work for your use case! :)

 

Anyways that was a lot of info so let me know if that was helpful or if I can clarify anything!

Michelle,

thanks for all of the above. Really useful.

I had looked at Connect Fields when I started looking at this aspect of our processes, but had forgotten it when I got side-tracked implementing a different aspect (which has me now knee-deep in Zaps, but that is a whole different topic!)

We’ll give this a try. The reporting might be an issue, but at the moment we aren’t quite sure how much of the reporting function we will be suing in Copper, as our reports don’t readily fit the Sales pipeline mould, and we haven’t had the time to start playing in it yet!

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@Rob Jones at ASE great, glad I could help! Let me know if anything comes up as you try it out.

 

The reporting might be an issue, but at the moment we aren’t quite sure how much of the reporting function we will be suing in Copper, as our reports don’t readily fit the Sales pipeline mould, and we haven’t had the time to start playing in it yet!

I totally understand! If/how you use Reports is so dependent on your specific situation it’s really hard to give blanket suggestions. But I will say that some folks don’t use the official Reports at all - they find that using saved filters give them the info they need. Others use our Google Sheets Add-on or Google Data Studio connector because they like those tools or need to combine data from other sources. And of course we have plenty of folks who do use our built-in Reports.

Feel free to post again if/when you want some guidance on Reports. 🙂

 

I got side-tracked implementing a different aspect (which has me now knee-deep in Zaps, but that is a whole different topic!)

Zapier is definitely a rabbit hole! Check out our Zapier section if you haven’t yet - it has a bunch of step-by-step instructions for common Zaps.

Thanks again!

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