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Bulk archive or delete contacts and members

I have recently shifted my membership from from a Bundled level to an Individual level. I have no members left in the bundled level and I'd like to delete the level but cannot do so - I think because there are some old lapsed members from the bundled level in the archive. I'd love to be able to set the Archive column to "delete" and re-import and have them go away.

Also, I need to send a blast email to 2,500 non-members to notify them of an upcoming event. I would love to be able to import the list, send them a blast email and then delete them. But without a delete tool I have to :

Export the archive to my computer for safe keeping.
Import the Blast Email list
Send the Blast Email
Re-import the blast email list with archive set to "yes"
delete the archive
Re-import the archive from my home computer.

Any way to delete more that one record at a time would be appreciated.

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    GordonGordon shared this idea  ·   ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →

    33 comments

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      • Kim SkimmonsKim Skimmons commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        [quote user="Apricot Kernel"]

        Just for information: in our next release we are going to provide a very simple way to batch-archive (not delete) any current visible set of contact records. Archiving contacts keeps all related records (e.g. financial documents, etc.) so you can easily "undo" if you need.

        To completely delete all archived records, admin can use existing functions for that (there is special button in Account details screen for that)

        [/quote]

        I don't see either of these features. Have they been released yet?

        ~ Kim

      • Becky ParsonsBecky Parsons commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Yes, you are correct. My request has two parts. For my needs, adding the search parameters for "last email opened" and "number of emails opened" is more critical than being able to bulk archive. Manually searching contacts to see how long ago and how many emails were opened (a sign of engagement with our organization) takes many steps and is very laborious.

        Once the appropriate contact is identified, archiving the contact is much quicker.

        We desperately need an easy and efficient way to:

        1. Clean up our database by eliminating those who are not engaged, and to manage our subscription costs to WA.

        2. Identify those who are the most engaged contacts so that we can better utilize their interest and turn those into paying members.

      • Nancy ScanlanNancy Scanlan commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        That is exactly what we need! The only time we would to bulk delete is when we are bulk archiving.

        Thanks so much - this saves a LOT of hassle for us.

      • Dmitry ButerinDmitry Buterin commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        We will only have the bulk-archive function, not bulk-delete (we think its too dangerous) - but we already have a function to delete all archived records so you will be able to archive and delete them in two steps.

      • Nancy ScanlanNancy Scanlan commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Yes, we have no problems doing a search for all to be archived. Will we be able to do a bulk delete also? Because we can already do a bulk archive by performing the search, then changing the Archived column to yes, and importing those files. The problem comes when finding them and going one by one to delete them.

      • Dmitry ButerinDmitry Buterin commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Ok, so this has two parts 1) having appropriate search parameters 2) having the bulk archive or delete action Version 5.0 will have include a bulk action to archive all records in current selection - so we are getting a bit closer already.

      • Evgeny aka Apricot KernelAdminEvgeny aka Apricot Kernel (Product Manager, Wild Apricot) commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Just for information: in our next release we are going to provide a very simple way to batch-archive (not delete) any current visible set of contact records. Archiving contacts keeps all related records (e.g. financial documents, etc.) so you can easily "undo" if you need.

        To complete delete all archived records, admin can use existing functions for that (there is special button in Account details screen for that)

      • philkryderphilkryder commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        i'm new here

        but,

        I think a simple and effective and quick path would be to

        allow bulk deletes

        but

        REQUIRE a backup first.

        WA already has the backup feature, so, just force the backup before delete.

      • Dmitry ButerinDmitry Buterin commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Good point about field validation - would appreciate if you could create a new thread on this and mention most common fields where this would help.

        Now back to your original point, I am not clear how bulk-deleting records helps with field cleanup. 1) Deleting records would also delete their transactions, invoices etc.

        2) A much better way is simple rename old field, import new clean field, check, delete old field.

      • Steve VeachSteve Veach commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Admittedly, bulk deletion of records isn't likely a common occurrence for most users as I'm sure it won't be a common occurrence for us. I can see however, how it would be very useful to make database-wide changes to field data and you don't appear to have any other way to do this on your site.

        For example, since you appear to have very limited field validation (and this is another suggestion for adding advanced field validation while I'm thinking of it) many of the fields will contain garbage or messy data. Phone numbers for example may be entered by a member in a variety of ways and formats. If we want to clean this up our only option is to export the database, use advanced third-party "regular expression" search and replace programs, then import the clean database back into Wild Apricot.

        Unfortunately, since you don't have field validation, it's only a matter of time before the database has inconsistent field data again. :-(

      • Dmitry ButerinDmitry Buterin commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        Thanks for the feedback.

        The export/import process is just a workaround since we do not currently have bulk deletion process.

        Could you share - what are the common situations when you need to bulk-delete records?

      • Steve VeachSteve Veach commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        The process to delete bulk records is very poor, tedious, and error prone. The manual process of having to first export to a spreadsheet, then find the records you want to keep, manually mark the archive column in those fields to "no", save the spreadsheet, import the spreadsheet, then follow the multiple steps to importing a new database, which are counter-intuitive (since you really want to delete records, so it's not obvious why one has to re-import everything again) and then finally in the last step go to Settings>Account and Billing to press the "Delete All Contacts" button (which is again counter-intuitive because you do NOT want to delete all contacts), then finally select "archived only" from the radio button selections is rather absurd.

        It should be just as easy to archive and delete bulk records as it is to archive and delete a single record. There should be almost no difference in procedure. There can be multiple safety checks when doing this to assure an admin doesn't do something they don't want to do by accident.

      • Nancy ScanlanNancy Scanlan commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

        I have used export/import to bulk archive members. But there are some who are archived that we do not want to delete, so can't use this method to bulk delete them. So it will be nice to have the ability to do so online.

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