MLS 3.1 Phone/Email changes

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aebrown
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MLS 3.1 Phone/Email changes

Postby aebrown » Thu Nov 12, 2009 11:01 pm

Here are the results of my initial research into how MLS 3.1 handles the individual phone and email fields:

Individual Record
The Contact Information panel of an individual record now has Individual Contact Information with a Phone Number and an E-Mail Address field. It also has a Household Contact Information section, with a note that the household contact information is shared by all household members.

Reports
For reports that list households (such as the Directory of Members), only household phone numbers (and household e-mail addresses, where applicable) will be shown. Individual phone numbers and e-mail addresses are never shown on such reports (which seems entirely appropriate to me).

For reports that list individuals (such as organization lists), there is now a column for "Phone and E-mail". This column will contain the individual phone number if present, or the household phone number if there is no individual phone; then comes the individual e-mail address if present, or the household e-mail address if there is no individual e-mail address.

Custom Reports
There is no change to the criteria, except that "Primary Phone Number" is now called "Household Phone Number"; there is no way to have an individual phone number or e-mail address, or the household e-mail address in a criterion.

In the Format area where you select the columns to include, there are:

  1. Household E-mail Address
  2. Household Phone Number
  3. Individual E-mail
  4. Individual Phone Number
  5. Contact Phone Number
  6. Contact E-mail
The first four are pretty obvious and work as expected. The last two are helpful fields for any report involving individuals. They work as I described above for individual reports; if the individual field is filled in, it is used, but if not, the household field is used.

If you had a report that included the Secondary Phone Number, that field is simply removed from any such custom reports.

Export
In Membership.csv, where we previously had three fields: Phone 1, Phone 2, and E-mail Address, we now have four fields: Household Phone, Individual Phone, Household E-mail, Individual E-mail. The two household fields contain the same values that Phone 1 and E-mail address always contained; the two individual fields are blank upon conversion to MLS 3.1, but of course may be filled in on individual records.

The whole export issue is probably worthy of a separate post, but that is a start.

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mkmurray
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Postby mkmurray » Thu Nov 12, 2009 11:12 pm

Alan_Brown wrote:Reports
For reports that list households (such as the Directory of Members), only household phone numbers (and household e-mail addresses, where applicable) will be shown. Individual phone numbers and e-mail addresses are never shown on such reports (which seems entirely appropriate to me).

DJC alluded to the fact that in subsequent versions, this could change (the defaults of Household then Individual or vice-versa in some reports). From what you've described, I think I agree that perhaps there shouldn't be any such later changes.

I am a little disappointed you can't select a type for phone and email (such as home, work, cell, fax, etc.). But perhaps this isn't really a necessary feature at this point and more of a luxury. I could also see it being more to maintain that we need to worry about. I think it's also too bad more than one number can't be listed per individual, but this is a good start at least.

Thanks for jotting down this info for us so we know what to expect.
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aebrown
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Postby aebrown » Thu Nov 12, 2009 11:22 pm

mkmurray wrote:DJC alluded to the fact that in subsequent versions, this could change (the defaults of Household then Individual or vice-versa in some reports). From what you've described, I think I agree that perhaps there shouldn't be any such later changes.


I don't know that a household-oriented report would or should ever list an individual phone or e-mail for the household. The only exception would be reports (such as Directory of Members or Household Report) that lists individuals within the household; in such reports, the household contact info would still be associated with the household, but each individual could have his or her individual phone and email listed.

That possibility of adding individual contact info is confirmed by the MLS 3.1 Release Notes, which say:

In future releases of MLS, and as resources permit, individual telephone and e-mail address information will be added to other MLS-produced reports and lists (such as forms, temple recommends, the Directory of Members, and other household lists).

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Mikerowaved
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Postby Mikerowaved » Fri Nov 13, 2009 3:15 am

Alan_Brown wrote:Custom Reports
There is no change to the criteria, except that "Primary Phone Number" is now called "Household Phone Number"; there is no way to have an individual phone number or e-mail address, or the household e-mail address in a criterion.

In the Format area where you select the columns to include, there are:

  1. Household E-mail Address
  2. Household Phone Number
  3. Individual E-mail
  4. Individual Phone Number
  5. Contact Phone Number
  6. Contact E-mail

Can I PLEASE make a request to the MLS developers, hopefully before this gets put in stone? Anytime I've had to produce a custom report that included a Phone Number, I find myself searching the alphabetical lists (both Criteria and Format) for something that started with "Ph" for "Phone", but I could never find it. I then have to look at each line item until I would finally stumble on "Primary Phone Number". Now that I can almost remember where that is in the list, they are going to move it to the "H's". Now that's just not fair! :(

Since they already have the following...

  1. Address - City
  2. Address - County
  3. Address - Postal Code
  4. Address - State
  5. ...and so on
Why not...?

  1. E-mail - Contact
  2. E-mail - Household
  3. E-mail - Individual
  4. Phone Number - Contact
  5. Phone Number - Household
  6. Phone Number - Individual
  7. Phone Number - Secondary
And if you're so inclined...

  1. Name - Maiden
  2. Name - Maiden2
  3. Name - Preferred
  4. Name - Spouse
...And so on.

This probably wasn't an issue when MLS was first released, as there were far fewer things to select from, however now the list is getting quite long and difficult to navigate, especially for first-time users, and I see this upcoming release making it even more difficult to use instead of easier.
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johnshaw
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LUWS synch?

Postby johnshaw » Fri Nov 13, 2009 5:48 am

Is there any indication that these individual fields will synch with the new LDS Account for LUWS?

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aebrown
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Postby aebrown » Fri Nov 13, 2009 6:01 am

jshawut wrote:Is there any indication that these individual fields will synch with the new LDS Account for LUWS?


They certainly won't synch right now. I would assume that they are laying the groundwork for the possibility of such synchronization sometime in the future.

greggo
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Postby greggo » Fri Nov 13, 2009 8:29 am

Mikerowaved wrote:
Since they already have the following...

  1. Address - City
  2. Address - County
  3. Address - Postal Code
  4. Address - State
  5. ...and so on
Why not...?

  1. E-mail - Contact
  2. E-mail - Household
  3. E-mail - Individual
  4. Phone Number - Contact
  5. Phone Number - Household
  6. Phone Number - Individual
  7. Phone Number - Secondary
And if you're so inclined...

  1. Name - Maiden
  2. Name - Maiden2
  3. Name - Preferred
  4. Name - Spouse
...And so on.


I second the motion.

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mkmurray
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Postby mkmurray » Fri Nov 13, 2009 8:29 am

Greggo wrote:I second the motion.

Yeah, it's a great suggestion.
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Export formats

Postby RossEvans » Sat Nov 14, 2009 11:25 am

I am just starting to analyze the new export file formats. But I have two immediate observations:

  1. It is extremely disappointing that the formats were revised without taking advantage of the opportunity to cure the worst problem with HomeTeaching.csv and VisitingTeaching.csv, which is their total lack of primary and foreign keys based on the "Indiv ID" and "HofH ID" fields in Membership.csv for teachers, supervisors, sisters and households. That cannot have been too difficult.
  2. In the column headers for VisitingTeaching.csv, the new field for the email address of "Visiting Teacher 1" is named ""VT E-mail". But for consistency with the other fields in this and other files, it obviously should have been named "VT 1 E-mail".

elderlarryhawkes-p40
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Postby elderlarryhawkes-p40 » Sat Nov 14, 2009 2:00 pm

Mikerowaved wrote:Can I PLEASE make a request to the MLS developers, hopefully before this gets put in stone? Anytime I've had to produce a custom report that included a Phone Number, I find myself searching the alphabetical lists (both Criteria and Format) for something that started with "Ph" for "Phone", but I could never find it. I then have to look at each line item until I would finally stumble on "Primary Phone Number". Now that I can almost remember where that is in the list, they are going to move it to the "H's". Now that's just not fair! :(

Since they already have the following...

  1. Address - City
  2. Address - County
  3. Address - Postal Code
  4. Address - State
  5. ...and so on
Why not...?

  1. E-mail - Contact
  2. E-mail - Household
  3. E-mail - Individual
  4. Phone Number - Contact
  5. Phone Number - Household
  6. Phone Number - Individual
  7. Phone Number - Secondary
And if you're so inclined...

  1. Name - Maiden
  2. Name - Maiden2
  3. Name - Preferred
  4. Name - Spouse
...And so on.

This probably wasn't an issue when MLS was first released, as there were far fewer things to select from, however now the list is getting quite long and difficult to navigate, especially for first-time users, and I see this upcoming release making it even more difficult to use instead of easier.


I Third the motion.


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