Merging duplicate contacts
Merging duplicate contacts is easy but there are a few things you need to know before you start.
It is not hard to find duplicate contacts in Sugar: they are everywhere. CRM Administrators should develop the habit of merging duplicate contacts whenever you come across them, or keep a running list and set time aside every week to clean up the duplicates you found.
Contacts that need to be merged may also be reported by other users using the Contact Update function.
Here is an example that does involve a merge.
I navigate to both contact records and see that they are identical in all respects, including employer, interest areas and history. So I navigate to one of the records and click Find Duplicates on the blue drop-down.
Tip: Alternatively, search for duplicates in List View, select the duplicates and choose Merge from the list of available actions in the drop down menu.
First, I have to help Sugar find the duplicate. The filter search on the next screen looks very similar to any other filter search in Sugar, except that you are using it to locate the duplicate contact:
Select the correct contacts, and click Merge Contacts. The next screen will allow you to review each contact and determine which field values are retained.
The merge screen looks like this (except it keeps scrolling down a long ways):
The purpose of the duplicate merge screen is to allow you to select which pieces of information you want to keep about this contact. If the two contacts which are being merged contain data that conflict with one another, it is your job to decide which data to keep. This includes interest area data.
If I prefer to use one of the contact records listed a the right as the primary I can pull the Primary bar across.
After scrolling down and carefully ensuring that the information on the left-hand side is what I want to keep, I click Save and then Confirm. Sugar performs the merge and deletes the duplicate record. It will direct you to the new, single record.
On this screen you will notice that any history which was on both records is now duplicated. That's okay; it's just how it is.
First, look at each contact record to be sure they are duplicates. I open each contact in a separate tab to keep things straight:
You never know what you are going to find, but your job is to figure out the story of this contact and update Sugar to reflect what you learn.
In the case of Nick Armstrong, after looking at each of the records I can see that three of these contacts have hard bounced and one is still valid. The three that have bounced are all related to Clifford Chance while the one that still works relates to Charles Russell.
Next I go online to read Nick Armstrong's profile on the Charles Russell website and to research him on LinkedIn.
Following my research I conclude that the Nick Armstrong at Charles Russell is a bonafide contact but that it does not appear likely that he is the same Nick Armstrong that was previously with Clifford Chance (there is no record of Nick or Nicholas Armstrong on Clifford Chance's website).
So my actions in this case will be to:
- Check Nick Armstrong (Charles Russell)'s interest areas and make sure they seem logical based on his practice profile
- Identify whether any of the Nick Armstrong (Clifford Chance) have any history or interest area data we may want to preserve. In this case, only one contact record has a note, indicating which lawyer originally added him to KIA.
- Delete the two Nick Armstrong records that have no history or additional value.
- Follow the procedure for contacts who have left their job in respect of the remaining Nick Armstrong (Clifford Chance).
So in this case I handled duplicate contacts without conducting a merge at all.