Custom fields

What are they?

Clevertim CRM allows you to define custom fields for storing data that is not already available in the system. For example, you might want to allocate an Account Manager for every contact. Since there is no field to store the name of the account manager for every contact, you can define a custom field. Ideally, an Account Manager should provide a list of valid account managers to choose from, rather than your users having to type the name every time, and potentially making mistakes in the process. Custom fields support all of that.

You can create custom fields for contacts, companies, cases and opportunities. You can reuse the same field name and definition and make it applicable to multiple items. For example, you can make the Account Manager field in our example to be applicable to contacts and companies.

The custom fields have a type and they do some basic validation and prevent common data entry problems. In our Account Manager example, the field is of type Select, which presents the data as a list of values to choose from, minimizing manual data entry errors.

Your custom fields can either store a single value or multiple values. In the Account Manager custom field in our earlier example, you probably want a single value, a single account manager who looks after a contact or company. However, in some cases you might want multiple values for the same field. For example, if you would like to store the products or services purchased by a certain contact or company, then you might want to add a field called Products/Services that allows multiple values, so you can enter multiple values under it.

You can define and manage your own custom fields in the Settings/Custom fields section.

Adding a new custom field

When you create your Clevertim CRM account and you go to the Settings/Custom fields section for the first time, you will see there are no custom fields. The Custom fields section will look like this:

../_images/custom_fields_empty.png

To add your first custom field, type a name for the custom field in the input text box which shows Custom field name and press the Add new custom field button. The field will then appear in the Custom fields section.

The next step is to define what this field is applicable to. In the Where is it shown? column, you can choose to make this field shown for contacts, companies, cases, opportunities or combinations. You can have fields that are shown for multiple items. Click on the Edit link to choose what this field is applicable to and therefore, where it is shown.

The next column allows you to select the type of the custom field. The supported types for the custom fields are described in the next section. When you select the type of the field, the Appearance column will show you how the custom field is displayed to the users. For fields of type Select, the Edit link in the Appearance column allows you to specify what values are allowed in the Select field.

The Allowed multiple values is a simple checkbox which allows you to select if the fields will only allow a single value for the field, or, when ticked, the custom field will allow multiple values.

When you are done making changes to your custom field, do not forget to click the Save button next to it, on the right. If you do not save the changes and refresh the page or move to another page, your changes will be lost and you might have to re-apply them. When the Save button is disabled, it means that all your changes are already saved.

When you add your custom fields, the custom fields section will be populated and you will see all your custom fields in one place. See an example below for illustration purposes (your actual set up will be different based on the custom fields you need):

../_images/custom_fields_example.png

You can always come back to this section and make changes or delete some of your existing custom fields.

Types of custom fields

Custom fields have a type which determines how the field will appear when displayed to the users and what kind of data it can contain.

Input fields

  • Appearance
    • Input fields are displayed as free text input boxes
  • Data & Validation
    • Users can type any alphanumeric or special characters
    • There is no validation on the data entered
  • Pros:
    • Input fields are very versatile and can support any type of data
  • Cons:
    • Lack of validation means the values might not be consistent
    • Users might enter the same values with different spelling, capitalization or spacing

Select fields

  • Appearance
    • Select fields are displayed as drop-down control
  • Data & Validation
    • Users have to select a value from a list of pre-defined values
    • You define the allowed values when you create the custom field
  • Pros:
    • Manual data entry are minimized as users select the data, rather than type it
  • Cons:
    • If new values need to be added, the custom field needs to be edited, which only an administrator has permissions to do

Date fields

  • Appearance
    • Displays a date and it has a calendar control for users to easily pick a date
  • Data & Validation
    • Can only contain a calendar date
  • Pros:
    • The calendar date picker offer a user friendly way for users to choose dates
    • Has special support for date lookups in filters and reports (e.g. after date, before date, in the last X days/weeks, etc.)
  • Cons:
    • None

Country fields

  • Appearance
    • Displays a list of countries for users to select from
  • Data & Validation
    • Can only contain a country from a pre-defined list of countries
  • Pros:
    • The list of countries is maintained by the system, you do not need to maintain it
  • Cons:
    • None

Region fields

  • Appearance
    • Displays a list of regions by country for users to select from
  • Data & Validation
    • Can only contain a region/country from a pre-defined list of countries
  • Pros:
    • The list of regions by countries is maintained by the system, you do not need to maintain it or type it in
  • Cons:
    • It contains regions for all countries, so it might be a bit more difficult to find the right value (it allows users to search though)

US State fields

  • Appearance
    • Displays a list of US states for users to select from
  • Data & Validation
    • Can only contain a US state from a pre-defined list
  • Pros:
    • The list of US states is available in the system, you do not need to type it in
  • Cons:
    • None

Currency fields

  • Appearance
    • Displays a list of world currencies for users to select from (e.g. US Dollar, Euro, British pound)
  • Data & Validation
    • Can only contain a currency from a pre-defined list
  • Pros:
    • The list of currencies is available in the system, you do not need to type it in
  • Cons:
    • None

User fields

  • Appearance
    • Displays a list of your own users in Clevertim to select from
  • Data & Validation
    • All your users onboarded onto Clevertim will be available to select from
  • Pros:
    • Supports any use case that requires one or multiple of your users to be associated with a contact, company, opportunity, case (e.g. Account Manager, Service Rep, Assigned user)
  • Cons:
    • Any of your employees/colleagues not onboarded into Clevertim will not be available for selection

Contact fields

  • Appearance
    • Displays a list of your own contacts in Clevertim to select from
  • Data & Validation
    • All your contacts entered into Clevertim will be available to select from
  • Pros:
    • Supports any use case that requires one or multiple of your contacts to be associated with another contact or a company, an opportunity or a case (e.g. Manager, Spouse, Related, etc.)
  • Cons:
    • None

Company fields

  • Appearance
    • Displays a list of your own companies in Clevertim to select from
  • Data & Validation
    • All your companies entered into Clevertim will be available to select from
  • Pros:
    • Supports any use case that requires one or multiple of your companies to be associated with a contact or another company, an opportunity or a case (e.g. Additional Company, Parent Group, Holding Company, Branch, etc.)
  • Cons:
    • None

Opportunity fields

  • Appearance
    • Displays a list of your own opportunities in Clevertim to select from
  • Data & Validation
    • All your opportunities entered into Clevertim will be available to select from
  • Pros:
    • Supports any use case that requires one or multiple of your opportunities to be associated with a contact, a company, another opportunity or a case (e.g. Previous tender, Previous inquiry, etc.)
  • Cons:
    • None

Case fields

  • Appearance
    • Displays a list of your own cases in Clevertim to select from
  • Data & Validation
    • All your cases entered into Clevertim will be available to select from
  • Pros:
    • Supports any use case that requires one or multiple of your cases to be associated with a contact, a company, a opportunity or another case (e.g. Previous inquiry, Previous problem, Related issue, etc.)
  • Cons:
    • None

Editing an existing custom field

To edit an existing custom field, go to the Settings/Custom fields section, make the changes you need to the custom fields you want changed.

To change the name of the custom field, just click on the name of the custom field. See illustration below:

../_images/custom_fields_name_edit.png

Once clicked, the name of the field becomes editable and you can change it. When you’re happy with the changes, just press the button with the tick.

../_images/custom_fields_name_edit2.png

If you want to discard your changes to the name field, just press the button with the X.

../_images/custom_fields_name_edit3.png

To change which items the fields are shown under, click the Edit link in the “Where is it shown?” column, like in the illustration below:

../_images/custom_fields_appearance_edit.png

Once clicked, you will see a dropdown that will allow you to select what items this field should be shown under. You can select to show the custom fields under multiple type of items.

../_images/custom_fields_appearance_edit2.png

For Select type of custom fields, you will need to select the values that are allowed into the field. Click on the Edit link under the Appearance column.

../_images/custom_fields_appearance_edit3.png

Once clicked, you can select the values that are allowed in the Select field. Enter one value per line and then click Ok to accept the values or Cancel to discard the changes you have made:

../_images/custom_fields_appearance_edit4.png

Once you are happy with your changes made to the custom fields, make sure you press the Save button on the right which corresponds to the custom field you are changing (i.e. the Save button located on the same row). See screenshot below for illustration purposes:

../_images/custom_fields_edit_save.png

Once saved, the new definition of the field will be visible to your other users in the system. You might have to refresh your browser to pick up the updated custom field if it is not picked up automatically.

Warning

When changing the type of a custom field, some values for the custom field might become invalid. For example, if you have a custom field of type Country and you change the type to US State, some values for the previous definition of the custom field will be invalid and might not be displayed correctly under the contacts, companies, cases or opportunities that have the custom field set to those values. Think carefully about the data before making changes to the type of the custom field.

If you decide you don’t need the changes you have just made, you can revert to the last saved version of the custom field by pressing the Reset field. You will lose any unsaved changes. See the screenshot below for the location of the Reset button.

../_images/custom_fields_edit_reset.png

Deleting a custom field

To delete an existing custom field, go to the Settings/Custom fields section and press the Delete button on the same row with the custom field that you do not need anymore. See a screenshot below for illustration purposes.

../_images/custom_fields_edit_delete.png

Once deleted, the custom field will no longer be displayed in the system.

Warning

All the data entered in this field for all the contacts, companies, opportunities or cases where the custom field is display will be lost.

Data entry

Custom fields appear on the right side for contacts, companies, opportunities and cases. Only the custom fields applicable to the given items will be displayed (e.g. custom fields for cases will only be shown for cases, not contacts, and so on).

To add a value for a custom field, just click on the value or the placeholder for the value (i.e. which says ‘Add a value’ or ‘Add another value’). Make the changes required and click the tick button or press Enter on your keyboard to save the changes. If you want to cancel the chances and keep the previous value, if any, just click the X button or press Escape. Multiple value custom fields will allow you to enter multiple values.

../_images/custom_fields_input_edit.png

Depending on the type of the field, the editing will be displayed differently. For example, a Date custom field will show a calendar control allowing you to pick the date in a more intuitive fashion. See the screenshot below:

../_images/custom_fields_calendar_edit.png

Data entry in bulk

Custom fields values can be added or removed for multiple contacts, companies, opportunities or cases at a time, in bulk. First step is to select the contacts, companies, opportunities or cases that you want the custom field values added or removed. The example below shows how to select multiple contacts in the Contacts tab, but the same operation can be done for companies, opportunities or cases in their respective tabs.

You can apply a filter to narrow down the list of contacts. Then use the checkbox on the left side to select the contacts you want to make changes to. Notice how in the example below, the contacts are filtered to only show those who have a gmail.com email address list, and then the first one in the list is selected (i.e. the checkbox is ticked).

../_images/contacts_list_select_contact.png

In the example above, you can see the “Select operation” dropdown control. This allows you to select an operation to apply to all the selected contacts at once.

In the section Bulk data updates, select the ‘Add/set field value’ option.

../_images/bulk_add_set_field_value.png

When you select this option, another dropdown control appears, allowing you to select which data field you want to update. In this second dropdown controls, shown in the illustration below, scroll down to the Custom fields section and pick the field you want to make changes to. In the example below, we’re going to pick the ‘Products purchased’ custom field.

../_images/bulk_add_set_field_value2.png

Once you select the data field you want to update, a final option appears allowing you to enter the actual value for the custom field. In the example below, we want to add a new product purchased and the product is ‘Cat food’. In this example, the value is presented as an free text input box, because that’s the type of this custom field. For date custom fields, a calendar control allows you to pick the date without having to type it, and so on. Depending on the type of the custom field, the way you enter or select or pick the values will differ.

../_images/bulk_add_set_field_value3.png

And finally, click the Apply button to make the actual changes. Once the changes are saved successfully, a confirmation dialog shows you how many contacts were updated successfully in bulk.

../_images/bulk_add_set_field_value4.png

Now, if you navigate to any of the updated contacts, you should see the newly added value for the chosen custom fields. In our example, we’ll look at the first contact in the list whom we’ve updated, and notice that the Products purchased custom field is now updated with the new value we’ve just added.

../_images/bulk_add_set_field_value5.png

To remove an existing value, follow the same steps as the ones above, but select the ‘Remove field value(s)’ from the ‘Select operation’ dropdown control box, as shown in the illustration below.

../_images/bulk_remove_field_value.png

Importing custom fields data

When you import data from CSV, your custom fields will be imported from columns that match the name of the custom field exactly. Be extra careful with additional spaces, different capitalization, punctuation when you name the columns in your CSV file.

For example, to import data from CSV into a date field called Birthday, just make sure you have a column in your CSV file called Birthday. Enter dates for that column. One best format for dates is the YYYY-MM-DD format, which is un-ambiguous and readable. Other date types are supported too, but try to stay away from the MM/DD/YYYY format which depending on the localization/country might be interpreted as DD/MM/YYYY instead.

For custom fields that allow multiple values, just add multiple columns with the same name. For example, you can add multiple columns Products purchased and all the values from those columns will be imported into the custom field Products purchased, which allows multiple values.

Exporting custom fields data

When you export your data to CSV files, the custom fields will be exported as columns in the CSV file, with the same name as the one they appear in the system.

Custom fields in filters

As soon as you add your first custom fields, you will notice that the ‘Filters by’ section at the top of your contacts, companies, opportunities or cases tabs will display an additional section titled ‘Custom fields’. This allows you to add a filter that uses that custom field to only show those items that match a certain criterion.

../_images/custom_fields_in_filters.png

To filter by a certain custom field, just click on the custom field, which should appear as a clickable link in the Filters section. Enter the value that you want to filter by and click Ok. In the example below, we want to see all the contacts who have ‘Cat food’ as a value in the Products purchased custom field (i.e. contacts who have purchased cat food).

../_images/custom_fields_in_filters2.png

As soon as you click Ok, the filter is being applied and the list view will only show those items that meet the criterion set. In our case, we see only those contacts who have purchased cat food. The current filter appears in the Filter your contacts by section, as sometimes is easy to forget that we’re not seeing all the contacts, but only those who meet the criterion (i.e. have purchased cat food in our example). Multiple such filters can be added to filter the list further.

../_images/custom_fields_in_filters3.png

To clear an individual criterion from the filter, just press the ‘bin’ icon, as in the image below:

../_images/custom_fields_in_filters4.png

If you have multiple criteria in your filter, you can clear them all in one go, by pressing the Reset button in your filters section. This will clear all the filters and show all your contacts, companies, opportunities or cases, depending on the tab that you’re in.

../_images/custom_fields_in_filters5.png

If you need to filter your contacts often by the same criteria, it’s worth saving the filter. Press the Save filter button in your filters section (visible in the screenshot above). Give your filter a name in the dialog that appears after that. The same dialog box allows you to select if this filter will be available to everyone else who uses your account, or to a select group of co-workers or perhaps just to yourself.

../_images/custom_fields_in_filters6.png

Once saved, the filter is available to be applied via one click from the Saved filters section on the right. Just click on it to apply it and filter your contacts, companies, opportunities or cases (whichever section the filter is applicable to).

../_images/custom_fields_in_filters7.png

Custom fields in reports

The custom fields are available in reports as:
  • search criteria (e.g. report to only show me contacts who purchased cat food)
  • column in the report (show the actual custom field values in the report data)

To search for contacts that have a custom field populated with a certain value, just select the custom fields in the section that allows you to specify the criteria. The custom fields will appear in the custom fields section of the selection, as in the illustration below, where we’re selecting the Products purchased custom field.

../_images/custom_fields_in_reports.png

To show a custom field as a column in the resulting report, just select the custom field in the list of fields to display. This is available in the selection dropdown with a label ‘Show only the following columns (in order)’. See illustration below with the Products purchased custom field added to the list of columns to display.

../_images/custom_fields_in_reports2.png

To run the report, just click on the Run button, or if you want to download the result as a CSV file, click the Download button. You can also save the report if you plan on using it multiple times or if you plan on making it available to other users within your company. To save the report, click the Save As button and give it a name and a short description as to what the report is intended to show.