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Take a Shortcut: Increase Your Act! Productivity

Make using your Act! database easier for your users. The easier it is to use, the more your people will use it. Training can help them build strategies and teach shortcuts, but you should take away the guessing and additional typing as much as possible. Here some things you could do:

  • Ensure that your users can choose most of their standard responses from dropdowns rather than having to type the information each time-especially in the history regarding.
  • Create templates for those often created documents that get sent to your customers. By using these predesigned document templates all users send out the same information with the same look and feel.
  • And finally, add shortcut buttons to the toolbars.

How do you decide what shortcuts to add?

That is pretty simple, look at those things that need to be done multiple times a day or that take many steps. You might also add buttons to make things easier. Here are some commands that custom buttons might prove to be of value for you and your users:  

  • Synchronize now. If you are synchronizing your remote database, this saves multiple clicks and also serves as a reminder to sync frequently.
  • Create a duplicate contact. If you have numerous contacts from the same company, this button can be a real time-saver.
  • Lookup by keyword. This really useful command is buried under Advanced lookups…several clicks down the Lookup menu. If you do a lot of more complex lookups, put it on the toolbar.
  • Generate your welcome letter or thank you letter. Instead of going through the multi-click process of selecting the template to use, a single click can generate your document.
  • Run that daily report you need to run. Again, a single click can replace the three or four clicks normally needed to run the report.


Add a shortcut button to the toolbar
  1. Right-click on the toolbar and select Customize
  2. From the list on the left, select the menu that the command is on…in this case Tools
  3. Scroll down the list of items on that menu to find the one you want on your toolbar
  4. Drag the command from the list on the right and drop it on the toolbar where you want it
  5. Repeat steps 3-5 to add any additional buttons
Customize Your Act Menu and Toolbar

If you want to create a shortcut to a document template or specific report you use create all the time, you will need to create a custom command on this menu, then drag that command to your toolbar. Pretty quick and easy.

Remember, the only good CRM is one that everyone in your group uses-and uses consistently. If making things easier for your users gets them to use the database better, then it is worth the effort. If the button is in front of your face, you will be more likely to use it…and use it in the same way as everyone else in your group does.

Patricia Egen Consulting has a consultant that will fit your company’s needs and can help you design your next steps to make your database easier to use. An easy to use database will help you grow more productive employees, and ultimately, make more sales. Be sure to give us a call to help you use your database more effectively.

Patricia Egen Consulting, LLC

803 Creek Overlook, Chattanooga, TN 37415
Main office: 423-875-2652 • Arizona office: 480-788-7504 • Florida office: 754-300-2827