Detailed Field Information Related Information Examples & Tutorials
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Contact Plan

The Contact Plan form is used to create an automated contact schedule that you can apply to an account in one step. You can prompt for a start date, delete pending contacts, set access rights controlling who can run the plan, and access the Event form to define the contact plan's actions.


Contact Plan form

Each Event in the Contact Plan schedules a Contact to perform a particular action on an account. These actions are grouped together into a sequence that makes up the contact plan. The sequence of actions may be as simple as a single contact to write a note to a debtor's Notes. Or, it may be as complex as you need, with many Events occurring in the plan, including other contact plans run from within the plan. Conditions may be set to determine when any particular Event occurs.

Anything that you can perform in a contact plan, you can also perform manually in Collect! So please, try out your steps manually until you are comfortable with them. It is even helpful to draw out a flowchart of events so that you really know what you want to happen at any given point in your sequence of actions. This gives you ultimate control over the automation process. Please be aware also, that the order of events in a contact plan affects the plan's behavior. Please refer to How Collect! Executes Contact Plans Internally for details.

Contact plans are run by selecting the Action button on the Debtor's form, or typing the contact plan code in the field just to the left of the Action button. You can run a contact plan on many accounts at once using Batch Processing.

You can also run a contact plan when you post a transaction, run an import, post payments, or close an account.

Code

The Code field holds up to 7 alpha-numeric characters identifying the contact plan. Each plan must have a unique Code. The Code is typed into the Action field on the Debtor's form to invoke the plan. It may also be chosen from the list of contact plans. Anywhere in Collect! that a contact plan is chosen, this Code will be used by Collect! to run the contact plan.

Try to use a Code that helps to identify what the contact plan does. For example, contact plan that schedules a call for tomorrow (one day) could have a code C1. A review 14 days from today could be R14.

The Demonstration database has example contact plans that you can try out. For instance, there is a NEW contact plan used to assign a Letter, and a Review in 10 days. This plan is typically run on newly listed accounts.

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Description

The Description field is a brief description of the contact plan. This description is displayed in the list of contact plans. You should try to use a description to help you recognize what the plan does.

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Prompt For Start Date

Switch ON 'Prompt for start date' if you want Collect! to prompt you for a Start Date when you run the contact plan.

When this switch is OFF, all date references within the contact plan are relative to the current date, when the plan is run. This means that a letter scheduled with a 1 day Delay will be printed in tomorrow's print batch, and a phone call scheduled for 10 days Delay will appear in your WIP List in 10 days.

When you turn this switch ON, all events in the plan will be scheduled with reference to the date you enter. This means that a letter scheduled with a 1 day Delay will be printed one day after the date you enter, and a phone call scheduled for 10 days Delay will appear in your WIP List 10 days after the date you enter.

If you want your entered reference date to apply to all the events in a contact plan, you will need to make sure every event has at least a 1 day Delay. If an event has 'Schedule immediately' chosen, it is done immediately, regardless of the reference date you choose.

tip.gif If you run a batch process with this switch ON, Collect! will prompt you only once at the start of the batch. The Start Date you select will be applied to the whole batch.

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Delete All Pending Contacts

Switch ON ' Delete all pending contacts' if you want all pending contacts in the debtor's contact schedule to be deleted when the contact plan is run.

warning.gif WARNING: Only switch this ON if you are sure you want to Delete all pending contacts. If there is any doubt, leave it OFF, or be sure to switch ON 'Prompt before deleting' described below.

Switch this OFF to leave any pending contacts in the debtor's contact schedule intact. When you run the plan, new contact events will be scheduled for the debtor, but existing ones will be left in place.

To toggle the switch, press the Spacebar or click your left mouse button on the field.

TO CONTROL WHICH EVENT TYPES ARE DELETED

You may control exactly which event types are deleted, rather than deleting all pending events. Turn this switch Switch this OFF and switch ON 'Delete same type contacts' in the Event form, just for the event types that you want deleted.

CONTACT PLANS THAT CALL OTHER PLANS

This switch has no effect when the contact plan is called as a sub-plan of another contact plan. The switch is only operative on the primary contact plan executed. If you have a contact plan that calls other sub-contact plans, the switch will have no effect when set on the sub-contact plans, but will work when set on the primary plan.

CREDIT BUREAU REPORTING

Scheduled Metro contacts for reporting to credit bureaus are not deleted regardless of this switch setting.

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Prompt Before Deleting

Switch ON 'Prompt before deleting' if you want Collect! to prompt you before deleting pending contacts. You will be asked if you are sure when the plan is run. A list of pending contacts will be displayed for you.

With this switch OFF, and ' Delete all pending contacts' switched ON, all pending contacts will automatically be deleted when the plan is run.

It is a good idea to switch ON 'Prompt before deleting' if you have any doubt about which pending contacts are being deleted.

tip.gif Don't turn this switch ON if you plan to run this contact plan in a batch.

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Do Not Run On Closed Debtors

Switch this ON with a check mark to prevent this plan from running on any debtor with Mode CLOSED. When Closed debtors are encountered in a batch process running this contact plan, they will be skipped and the file numbers will be logged to the Collect! Application Log.

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Allow All Users To Delete

Switch this ON with a check mark if you want to ensure that all pending contacts are deleted no matter who runs this contact plan.

warning.gif WARNING: Careful! Switching this ON overrides access rights. This means ANY user level who runs this plan will delete all pending contacts on the account, even if their access rights level does not allow editing or deleting contacts.

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Sub-Plan

Switch this ON with a check mark if this plan is called by another plan and is not to be executed on its own. When this switch is enabled, this plan will not show up in the list of contact plans that the end user sees when the ACTION button is selected. This ensures that your sub-plans will not be selected accidentally and run by themselves.

tip.gif There are several setup areas where you can still select a plan that is a sub-plan. For instance, in the Transaction Type form. This gives you, as an administrator, flexibility for calling these plans as needed, while ensuring that your users will not run them accidentally.

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Events

The Events sub window displays the events in the contact plan and allows you to create new ones. To activate the Event sub window, click into it, or press F5. If this is a new contact plan and there are no events showing in the list, you will be prompted to create one. Select YES. If there are events showing in the list of an existing plan, you may select an Event to view, or press F3 to create a new one.

Each Event in a contact plan is fully defined in the Event form. You can define letters, phone calls, file reviews, status changes, promises, post Transactions, write Notes to the Debtor record, or make one or more changes to a Debtor record. You can activate or close an account, assign accounts to an Operator, set a Commission rate or plan. You can even cause another contact plan to be executed on some future date.

Events can be scheduled to occur on certain dates. You can set the number of Days delay before an Event in the contact plan occurs. For example, you could schedule Letter 1 to be sent today, and Letter 2 to be sent in 10 days, based on a condition you set.

tip.gif Please turn off the Contact Plan Cache before editing your Contact plans. Change this setting through the System Administration menu, Setup and Configuration, Plans and Reference Tables, WIP Options.

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Security

Select this button to open the Contact Plan Access Rights form where you can select user levels who will be allowed access to this contact plan.

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Delete

This button is visible only on the list of all contact plans. Select this to delete the highlighted item from the database.

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Edit

This button is visible only on the list of all contact plans. Select this to open and modify the highlighted item.

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New

This button is visible only on the list of all contact plans. Select this to open a new blank Contact Plan form.

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Help

Select this button for help on the Contact Plan form and links to related topics.

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Cancel

Select this button to ignore any changes you may have made and return to the previous form.

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OK

Select this button to save any changes you have made and return to the previous form.

<<

Select this button to view the previous contact plan in the list.

>>

Select this button to view the next contact plan in the list.

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See Also

- Contact Plan Basics
- How To Manage Contacts
- How To Use Contact Plans
- How To Design New Contact Plans
- How To Copy Contact Plans To Master Database

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