Monday, July 1, 2013

Adding Custom Fields in Zoho CRM - The right way!

When adding custom fields in Zoho CRM to meet your business needs, one should take time to consider these three tips.

1) Focus on what reports you will want or need to see first.

2) Create the fields in the correct module/form.

3) Scrutinize when or why custom fields should be duplicated across several modules.

 
 Focus on what reports you will want or need to see first.

Defining the reports, or mapping out what data you want to see and when, will drive what custom fields you actually need to create.  

Example: "I want a daily report that shows how many outbound "calls" were made by each Sales Person pertaining to each Product or Service."

Create the fields in the correct module.

In the above report requirement you find that in the Activity "New Call" module, there is no field that allows a Sales Person to enter in data relating to a specific product/Service.  Meaning there is no way to report on this.

Thus, you would create a new custom field called "Related to Product/Service" in the "New Call" form. 

If you also wanted a daily report on "tasks" relating to a specific Product or Service, you would also create a new custom field called "Related to Product/Service" in the "New Task" form.

Scrutinize when or why custom fields should be duplicated across several modules.

Having the same custom field in several modules or forms can cause data integrity issues.

Example: If you create a new custom field called "Product of Interest" in the Contact, Account & Potential Forms, it can skew your reports if the customer's interest changes and the Sales Person doesn't change or update each field in each form.  If the Sales Person only changes/updates the "product of Interest" in the Potential form....and your reports are pulling data from the Account Form, then your reports are inaccurate.

In this case, you can create a custom field "Product of Interest" in the Potentials module/form.  As the specific Potential is related to a product....not the Account or Contact.  Or you can create the field under the Account Form, depending on your business policies or needs.....but not both.

In the first example of "New Call" & "New Task", you WOULD create a duplicate field as a Sales Person can make a CALL regarding Product/Service 1 and create a TASK regarding Product/Service 2.  Thus, there would be now data redundancy or data integrity issues.


So, keeping these three tips in mind when creating custom fields in Zoho CRM can save you many headaches down the road.

Happy Selling!

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