Top FAQ About Act! v17 CRM

Oct 9, 2014 | General

Act Roadshow 2014 FAQ

Recently, the team at AspenTech Consulting Group, Inc. offered a preview webinar for Act! v17 CRM.  Following the webinar we had a massive amount of inquiries from customers, prospective customers, and first-time CRM users from across the country.

FAQ About Upgrading to Act! v17

Below are some of the top questions we have fielded about the upgrade to Act! v17 for existing and new users of the customer relationship management system.

Q:  I currently have Act! 2009, version 11 – Will I keep my data if I upgrade to Act! v17?

A:  Yes.  All data and customizations from databases are transferred to the new software during all upgrades.

Q:  In Act! 2009 Version – missing all tabs below contact info – will they be restored and function properly in new version?

A:  New version will not restore as they are still on current version. New hi-resolution monitors and displays cause Windows to default settings to abnormally / disproportionately enlarged font sizes on the system which causes problems in Act!.  The recommendation is to set font the sizes back to normal and then decrease the resolution to proportionately make everything larger on the screen.

Q:  Can you import from Excel to History?

A:  This is possible, however you will need a third party tool to enable the functionality.  Act! can import from Excel to Company, Contacts and can even make notes within the Contacts, but it cannot import to History without use of a third party tool such as OakMerge.

Q:  Can an email from a mobile device sync from Act! to Outlook?

A:  It depends on how email on mobile device is set up.  With this in mind, there are two options with which to consider:

  1. Use a native email system on mobile.  If you are using this type of system then Act! Premium Mobile will use this system to compose emails and will end up in the sent items folder if you’re on Exchange or Google Apps.  If those emails don’t already synchronize then Act! will not change that.
  2. Or, you can set up a SMTP server (outbound mail server) within Act! Mobile to send directly within Act! Mobile and immediately have the information put in to History but it will not be put into sent items.

Q:  How is Act! for Web and Mobile set up on a Server so that all users can access online?

A:  All Windows server (as well as Professional) operating systems have a component called IIS (Windows Web Hosting Platform).  Act! piggybacks on this to host Act! web or Mobile to provide access to users online.  Sometimes configuration on the firewall is needed.

Q:  If you call from cell will Act! Mobile automatically record in your calls in Act!?

A:  No, it will not but you can go in and easily create a history from the contact. Two spots down from “Call Mobile” is “record history”.  Once there, you can add the details of the call.

Q:  Is mobile available to those with a Hosted Database?

A:  Yes.

Q:  If someone opts-out from a received email will they automatically be blocked from future emails?

A:  They’ll automatically be blocked if they opt out of Act! E-marketing from future Act! E-marketing that you send.  This will not prevent you from sending Outlook emails but you must be careful if you are sending email marketing pieces in this fashion to small groups (20-30 recipients for example).  We always recommend that Act! clients put a field in their database for email opt-in or opt-out to make sure that broadcasts exclude those who have opted out of campaigns.

Q:  Further clarification on using Act! E-marketing vs. Outlook for emails:

A:  When using Emarketing in Act! this is more of an email broadcast system for larger scale emails for marketing purposes. These Emarketing emails will send “scores” so that you will know who is opening your emails and what they were specifically clicking on. Even if you create an Emarketing broadcast that looks more like a traditional email, you may want to use Emarketing in order to take advantage of the “scoring” so that you can see the detailed information on who was interested in what.

Q:  Is there a way to assign a follow up to another Act! user in your company for a specific contact that is open in email broadcast?

A:  Yes.  You can go into the call list for a specific contact and once there you can schedule a call for anyone else.  In addition, you can also use Smart Tasks for this function.

Q:  Can you use Web Forms in Act! Emarketing templates?

A:  You can link to a Web Form in Act! Emarketing template.  However, you cannot have an emarketing broadcast embedded in an email template.

Q:  Can you take a photo of a business card and have it automatically entered as a contact?

A:  No, Act! cannot currently perform this function without the use of an intermediary.

Q:  Is it necessary to have Act! installed on every computer with so much Web functionality?

A:  No, it’s not. It depends on the functionality that your users need but more and more users are finding that Act! Mobile or Act! for Web is enough for them.

Q:  What is KPI?

A:  Key Performance Indicators.

Q:  Is there any way to prevent a user from deleting a Contact, History or Notes?

A:  Yes, depending on the security level of the user they may, or may not, have the ability to delete information. You may have the ability to prevent them from deleting records.  This is an option in the Premium version of Act! CRM.  You can also turn off the editing of notes and histories which will prevent users from deleting those records.

Q:  Is there any way to integrate Act! v17 with EcoSign? (For example, when a document is sent for signature an activity is automatically created. When a document is signed then it would move to History and attach the signed document).

A:  No, this feature is not available in Act! v17.

Q:  Can groups or sub-groups be combined into a single look up?

A:  No.  Act! cannot create look-ups based on multiple groups.  However, you can create look-ups based on multiple fields in an Act! database.  We often find that users create groups because they are a simple and easy to create in order to segment contacts. It is often more helpful to have fields for those groups.

For example, a group for “Holiday Cards” is created and then a user can create a search for those who have “holiday cards” checked in their profile and then send an email blast to that sub-set instead of mailing out actual individual cards.  This example can be replicated for any number of queries for fields rather than groups.

Another option is to take contacts from several groups or sub-groups and add them to a single group.

Q:  Is there still a Social Updates tab in Act! v17?

A:  Yes.  This may have been hidden in the demo layout of our webinar.

Q:  When I receive an email from a new contact through Outlook will it automatically create a new contact in Act!?

A:  No, but there is a toolbar icon in Outlook that you can click on to create a new contact. This does not happen automatically though.

Q:  If you modified Act! fields and user fields what happens with the new look of v17?

A:  The icons and navigation items will all still be the same in Act! v17. If you customize your layout this will take precedence over any demo layouts.

Q:  With the History List can you disable certain users from seeing other user’s histories?

A:  You can  limit which contacts a user sees and if they don’t have access to the contact then they don’t have access to the history. However, if they have access to the contact then they will be able to see the history for that contact.  Act! users could always do this before in older versions of the CRM system and that has not changed with Act! v17.  We can coach you on how to limit user access when you contact us.

Q:  Does Act! work with Ring Central?

A:  We are not currently aware of any integrations for this out there (as similar to the issue with EcoSign). It may be possible to integrate with Ring Central, however, we would have to work with the user on this and it may require some customization.

Q:  When installing Act! v17 do you have to decide whether or not you will use the Act! for Web version or the Client version during the install process?

A:  This must be determined on the server during the install. If you want the Web version to be available then it must be installed on the server. As far as end-users go, then you don’t need to install Web on their computer, just the Client version.

Q:  Is there a way to choose individual security options instead of just applying security levels, such as Manager, etc.? (For example, a user may not need to download client databases but they may need to have many other access of that particular security level).

A:  There are some customizable user permissions but it’s not as granular as we might like it to be and it’s been high on the list of new features that we have been looking for that are not yet available. You still have the ability to control whether Standard users delete and export information.  However, users in the Manager role are above standard users and will have access to those items and you can’t take those permissions away from those users.

We would encourage you to talk to us about what functionality your Managers need because we’ve seen many times where clients believe that all of their users need to be a Manager so they can schedule on behalf of another user.  However, there is another way for them to be able to do that as a Standard user.

Q:  Is there any disadvantage to being on the Web vs. on the Server?

A:  If you’re connecting through the Web client you need an internet connection at all times to be able to do that or a network connection to the server to be able to connect to the server.  Act! is starting to close the gap between the two products; Web and regular Client, so from a functionality standpoint there’s not a lot there.  From an administrative standpoint there is a lot on the Client version as far as backups, restores or merging duplicates that aren’t available on the Web version.  The gap for functionality is getting smaller and smaller with every update.

Q:  Can you migrate the layout from Act! v16 to Act! v17 since I’ve customized the screen for user fields and can you use both Server, Client and Web?

A:  Yes. You can use the installed Client with a remote database, you can use the installed Client with a maintained database over a local area network connection, you can use the Web version and you can use the Mobile version all in the same environment. You can have a hybrid of all of those things. Even one single user is entitled to use all those different access points. There is no additional licensing needed for any of that.

Q:  Can you import contacts from a LinkedIn Group with Act! v17 or do you need a third party software?

A:  Third party software is still needed to do this.

Q:  Does Act! Emarketing replace Swiftpage Email?

A:  Eventually it will. There are still a few things that are available in Swiftpage Email that are not in Act! Emarketing such as surveys and drip marketing.  With Web forms we are getting close to this. It is not a direct replacement yet, but it soon will be and there will be a migration path from Swiftpage Emarketing to Act! Emarketing.