By Jon Klubnik • May 18th, 2012

How To Create, Manage, and Add Contacts to Groups in ACT!

Answer ID 12864   |    Published 07/02/2005 09:18 AM   |    Updated 04/26/2012 09:33 AM

You would like to know how to create and manage groups and subgroups in ACT!.

Introduction
Groups provide a way to categorize and organize contacts along with helping to manage relationships with accounts. Here are a couple examples of how you might use groups to manage information in your ACT! database:

  • Groups as Diverse Collections of Contacts
    You can use groups as a collection of contacts that you want to view at the same time. Create groups to keep track of prospective customers, competitors, sales representatives, or personal contacts. If a group contains personal contacts, you can designate that group as private, so no one else can view the group information.
  • Groups as Saved Lookups of Contacts
    A group can also serve as a saved lookup of contacts that you need to access often. For example, as a committee member, you may need to schedule meetings with other members, e-mail them, or send them memos. By creating a group for the committee, you can quickly create a lookup of all members.

Creating Groups and Subgroups:
To create a new group you must be in the Groups view:

  1. To display the main Groups view, click the Groups button in the navigation bar, press F10, or click the View menu, and then clickGroups.
  2. In the Groupsview, there are two different ways of displaying group information:
    • From the toolbar you can select Groups to view the Group Detail information. This will show the detailed information of one group.
    • From the toolbar you can select Groups List to view a list of groups in the database.
  3. Click the New Group icon or click the Groups menu, and then click New Group.
  4. Type in the name of the group, and a description (if needed) as shown below.
  5. Once completed, click the File menu, and then select Save. You will notice the Hierarchy field now contains the name of your group.

Creating Subgroups
In ACT! you have the ability to create up to 15 levels of subgroups and an unlimited number groups and subgroups at each level. To create a subgroup of an existing group or subgroup:

  1. From the Groups view, click Group List icon on the toolbar.
  2. If you want to create a subgroup of an already existing subgroup, check the Include Subgroups check box to display all subgroups.
  3. Select the group or subgroup you wish to create a subgroup for and click the New Subgroup icon . ACT! will automatically switch back to the Group Detail view.
  4. Enter the name of the subgroup and a description.
  5. Once completed, click the File menu, and then click Save. You will notice the Hierarchy field now contains the name of your original group and your subgroup.

    Note: If you have many levels of subgroups, they will be listed in the format Main Group->Subgroup of Main Group->Subgroup of Subgroup of Main Group… and so on.

Saving a Lookup as a Group:
With ACT! you can easily save a lookup of contacts as a new group. Follow the steps below:

  1. Create a lookup of contacts that you wish to be the members of the new group.
  2. Click the Lookup menu, point to Groups, and then click Save Lookup as Group. The Group Detail view appears.
  3. Enter the name of the new group and a description if needed.
  4. Click the File menu, and then click Save.

The new group will be created and the lookup of contacts will be automatically added as a dynamic criteria. If any new contacts are added to the database that pertain to the lookup, they will be automatically added to the group. Additionally, if any group member’s fields that are associated with the saved lookup are changed to a value that no longer pertains to that saved lookup, they will be automatically removed. For more information on dynamic group criteria, refer to the section in this document titled, Creating Group Membership Criteria.
Promoting, Demoting, and Moving Groups or Subgroups:
To move, promote, or demote groups and subgroups, follow the instructions below:

  1. Click the group you wish to move, promote, or demote in the Group List or ensure it is the current group in the Group Detail view.
  2. Click the Groups menu, and then click Move Group.
  3. Enable the Promote subgroup to group or Change to be a subgroup of: option, and then click the group you want your current group to be a subgroup of (as illustrated below).

    Note: The current group you are moving is listed in the title of the Move Group window. In the example above, you are designating the group called Eugene Customers to be a subgroup of Oregon Customers.
  4. Click OK.

Adding Contacts to Groups or Subgroups:
After creating a group or subgroup, the next step is to add contacts (or members) to the group. A contact can belong to one or more groups or subgroups.
There are two different methods that can be used to add contacts to a group:

  • Add Selected to Group – adds currently selected contacts to a group.
  • Add/Remove Contacts – allows you to add and remove static contacts or create a dynamic criteria to do so automatically from the Groups view.

Add Selected to Group
The Add Selected to Group option allows you to add selected contacts to a current group. There are three views in ACT! that allow you to add the selected contacts to a group:

  • Contact Detail – click the Group menu, point to Group Membership, then click Add Selected to Group.Select the group to add the current contact to. This will add only the current contact to the selected group.
  • Contact List – select one or more contacts, click the Group menu, point to Group Membership, and then click Add Selected to Group.Select the group to add the selected contacts to.
  • Group Detail – select one or more contacts, click the Group menu, point to Group Membership, and then click Add Selected to Group.Select the group to add the selected contacts to.

Add/Remove Contacts
When managing groups, you have the option of manually adding and removing static contacts to the group, or creating a dynamic criteria to add and remove contacts automatically. To manually add and remove group members follow the instructions below. For instructions on creating a dynamic criteria to automatically add and remove group members please refer to the section in this document titled, Creating Group Membership Criteria.

  1. Open the Add/Remove Contactswindow:
    1. From the Group List or Group Detail views, select the group to add contacts to.
    2. Click the Group menu, point to Group Membership, then click Add/Remove Contacts. The Add/Remove Contacts dialog will appear.
  2. Click the Contacts button. The Contacts dialog will appear.
  3. Click the drop-down menu at the top to Select from: All Contacts, Current Lookup, Groups, or Companies.
  4. To add contacts to a group; click the contacts from the Contacts to select from list on the left, and then click the add button.
    Hint: Hold your Shift key after selecting the first contact in a list of adjacent contact records, and then click the last inclusive contact in the list to select all contact records between. Alternatively you can hold the Ctrl key and click multiple non-adjacent contact records to select them all.
    Note: Using this method, you can only remove contacts from the group that have been either been added manually or through the Add Selected to Group command. Contacts that have been added to the group automatically through a dynamic criteria will not appear on the right (Selected Contacts) side.
  5. Click OK, and then click OK again to close the Add/Remove Contacts dialog.

Note: Introduced in ACT! by Sage 2010, on the Group Detail view is a total for number of members included in the Group selected. The total is located at the bottom of the Group listing (middle column).
Duplicating a Group:
Duplicating the group record creates a new group with the same group information and the same group members. Follow these steps to duplicate a group:

  1. From the Group List view.
  2. Double-click the group you wish to duplicate. The Group Detail view appears.
  3. Click the Groups menu, and then click Duplicate. The Duplicate Group dialog appears.
  4. Click the option that matches what data you want to duplicate:
    • Duplicate data from primary fields – copies data from the primary fields of the current group record. The default primary group fields that will be copied are: Address 1, Address 2, Address 3, City, Country, State, and Zip.
    • Duplicate data from all fields – copies data from all the fields of the current group record. This does not include the name of the group.
  5. Click OK to create the duplicate group.
  6. Enter a name for the new group and fill in any other fields as you require.
  7. Click the File menu, and then click Save.

Note: When you duplicate a subgroup, the duplicate subgroup is also a subgroup of the same group.

Creating Group Membership Criteria:
Group membership criteria defines the conditions under which contacts are assigned to a group. You can create a criteria to dynamically add contacts to a group that pertain to a certain data set. New or modified contacts that match an already created criteria will automatically be added to the group. Contacts that are modified that no longer match the specified criteria will be automatically removed from the group.
For example, you could create a criteria for the North America group that specifies that all contacts with United States, Mexico, or Canada in the contact record’s Country field be assigned to the group.

  1. From the Group List view.
  2. Double-click the group you want to add a dynamic criteria to (If you are looking for a subgroup, be sure to check the box to Include subgroups). The Group Detail view opens.
  3. Click the Add/Remove Contacts button. The Add/Remove Contacts dialog appears.
  4. Click the Edit Criteria button. The Group Criteria dialog opens.
  5. Select either Contact or Opportunity for the Type of field to base the criteria on.
  6. Click the drop-down arrow for Field Name, and then click the field you would like to use for group membership criteria.

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