90 Minute Contact Manager in FileMaker Pro
This course on FileMaker development is designed for beginners but with a goal of designing a complete contact management or CRM solution. Sections include creating fields, designing an interface, performing finds, creating a notes field, working with popovers, automating email and web browser communication, mass emailing, eliminating duplicates, birthday and to-do reminders, phone formatting and call logs. After completing this tutorial, students will not only have created a complete solution but be able to advance to intermediate tutorials. Completed example FileMaker files are included at each stage of the development in order to enhance the learning experience.
The first step is defining the goal by touring the completed contact manager.
The Field Picker is the easiest way to create fields in FileMaker Pro.
Housekeeping fields are those that track creation and modification of records.
In order to save time and also show to work with an Excel spreadsheet, data will be imported.
Choosing a theme is as simply as scrolling through a list of choices and clicking.
Parts define where elements display when a user is viewing your solution.
FileMaker has two main views: form and list view. Learning the differences is very important.
Making sure font types and sizes match is all import for a consistent interface.
Resizing and positioning fields in an organized manner is key to interface design.
Determining the window size for your FileMaker solution is a crucial step in the design process.
Learn how to perform basic finds or searches.
Additional requests allow for OR finds in FileMaker as opposed to the traditional AND find in a single request.
Omitting records allows for exclusion.
Date range finds are one of the most common search tasks, allowing you to locate records that match a range of dates.
Finding records with nothing in a field is a very common task, helping you to locate records that are incomplete.
The Field Control tool allows you to more easily add fields larger than one row in height, such as a Notes field.
Popovers allow you to fit a lot of information, such as a notes field, in a small area.
Fields containing multiple lines may require a scroll bar.
Communication with other Applications
FileMaker makes it very easy to script communication with several email clients, allowing you to pass information stored in FileMaker fields like email addresses, subjects and entire email correspondence.
FileMaker can also communicate with your favorite web browser to open any web site stored in a FileMaker field.
Since the data being sent out in the email won't be stored in FileMaker, it's best to use global fields as the interface for composing the mass email.
In order to provide feedback, let's place some instructions in the popover identifying how many people will receive the mass email.
A Send button placed in the popover allows the completed message to be sent using the Send Mail script step.
Find birthdays by month, regardless of the year or day.
Automate searching for upcoming birthdays.
Add a calculation that displays the age of the contact next to their date of birth.
Define what determines whether a record is a duplicate or not is the first step to locating duplicates.
Automating the process of locating duplicate records with a script makes it far easier to perform and also avoids the need to display the duplicates field on the layout.
In order to filter a phone number, all formatting must be removed.
Once the numbers have been isolated, the phone can be formatted with simple concatenation.
Implementing the formatting feature requires the use of an Auto-Enter calculation.
Incorporate the Let function to make your formulas more efficient.
Allow for 7 and 10 digit phone numbers using a Case statement.
A new table allows for the storage of unlimited number of calls to a particular contact.
A relationship between tables allows them to communicate with each other.
A portal is one of the many interfaces for a relationship, allowing multiple related records to be viewed.
The tables for Call Logs and To-Dos are very similar so save some time and duplicate the Logs table and change the fields as needed.
Configure the portal with the various fields and a checkbox.
Add a checkbox in order to mark to-dos records as completed.
Reminders require a script to automate the process of locating and organizing to-do items.
In this case, a sorted relationship is a better choice than a sorted portal so sorts work properly.
Working with John Mark Osborne
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