Create Opportunity From Contact Plugin

Well since Opportunities became bona fide Primary Entities back in ACT! 2009, we have been using them quite heavily internally at Caldere. One of the real problems that user’s highlighted was that now we had an Opportunity Detail screen the sales guys were wasting a lot of time flicking backwards and forwards between views. This constant switching was also leading to multiple GDI crashes on controls within ACT!. We have increased everyone’s GDI pools via Group Policies but even then this was starting to become quite an issue.

The question that was asked was if we could develop a plugin that would be able to copy Contact fields over to the Opportunities as well as all the Notes, Histories and finally also associate the activities to that new Opportunity as well.

Well truth be told I feel that this should be a native built-in feature within ACT! personally. I decided to create a plugin that would mimic the Create Company from Contact functionality and have the field mappings within an XML file. I had toyed with the idea of centralising the XML file but almost immediately rejected that stupid idea due to concurrency and file lock issues. It would be easier to just install the plugin on each machine and have the XML there as well. The downside of this would be will be when people want to include additional fields then we will have to each machine and overwrite the XML. Actually a more likely scenario is that we’ll create a BAT file and run that from a Windows Logon script, but still not ideal!

I’m actually really quite pleased with this simple plugin and as with our usual policy at  Caldere, code that we feel would be of direct benefit to our client’s, we give them the applications/plugins etc for free as part of their support contract. By the end of the day, there was already 3 clients that were quite excited about the plugin since they had been experiencing the same kind of issues as our sales guys.

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