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Posts Tagged: clients

Things are hotting up here in Europe – and we don’t mean Brexit! A heatwave is currently engulfing parts of the continent with temperatures hitting a whopping 40°C in Paris. Across the Channel here in the UK the temperature is far more bearable, and so we’ve been busy working away on development on the next release of our leading web based room and resource scheduling system, MIDAS.

We’re excited to announce that the forthcoming v4.22 update will include the often requested feature of “custom client fields”, including the ability for self-hosted MIDAS customers to attach documents (i.e. insurance certificates, contracts, etc) to client records.

Similar to the “custom booking fields” feature first introduced way back in 2010, which allows administrators to add additional booking fields to their MIDAS system on top of the standard booking fields, the new custom client fields feature will provide similar functionality to client records in your MIDAS database.

Prior to v4.22, the standard client fields in MIDAS were fixed and allowed you to capture the following items of data for each of your clients/customers:

  • Client name
  • Organization
  • E-mail address (or addresses)
  • Postal address
  • Telephone number
  • Fax number
  • Mobile/Cell number
  • Notes

The introduction of custom client fields gives you even more flexibility! Now you’ll be able to add additional fields to capture other client information that you wish to collect, for example you could add a “Salutation” list field (Mr, Mrs, Ms, Miss, Rev, Dr, etc), or a file upload field to capture an insurance document from your clients..

A custom “Salutation” client field in MIDAS v4.22
A custom “Salutation” client field in MIDAS v4.22
A custom "Insurance Document" upload client field in MIDAS v4.22
A custom “Insurance Document” upload client field in MIDAS v4.22

The types of custom client fields that may be added are the same as those available for custom booking fields, namely:

  • Checkbox – A “tick box” field
  • File – (self-hosted editions only) Allows uploading/attaching of files and documents to client records
  • List – A drop-down list of pre-defined items
  • Number – A field that will only accept numerical input
  • Range – A “slider” control allowing selection of a numeric value within a defined range
  • Text – A single-line text field
  • Text Area – A multi-line text field
  • URL – A navigable web link to an external resource

Both custom booking and custom client fields may be managed via MIDAS Admin Options → Manage MIDAS → Fields

Custom client fields in MIDAS v4.22
Custom Client Fields in MIDAS v4.22

From this screen you’ll also be able to control which client fields (both standard and custom) should be included on printouts, in search results, and on public booking/request screens. You’ll also be able to re-order client fields as well as selectively hide them from individual users too!

As the next update to our web based room booking and resource scheduling software fast approaches, we’re giving you a “first look” on our blog at some of the new and improved features you can look forward to in this next update to MIDAS v4.11…

We’ve overhauled the “client” field on the Add/Modify Bookings screen for v4.11:

The previous Client selector in v4.10
The previous Client selector in v4.10 and earlier
The new Client selector in v4.11
The new Client selector in v4.11

The improved client selector is easier to read, larger (making it easier to select clients on very small screens), and highlights in bold the parts of the search results matching the characters you’ve typed into the Client field.

The improved client selector is also better able to handle thousands of client records. In MIDAS v4.10 and earlier if you end up with thousands of clients in your database, the loading time of the Add/Modify Bookings screen could become degraded. The new client selector in v4.11 combats this, by loading searching results dynamically “on demand” if there are a significant number of clients in your database.

One of the reasons why your client database can become very large is if users failed to select an existing client when adding new bookings. We’re also combating this in v4.11.

Previously, on Add/Modify Bookings screen, users had the option to select an existing client from a drop-down list of clients which appeared when they begin typing into the “Client” field. However, if a user ignored the drop down list of existing clients, and completed manually typing a client name into this field, MIDAS would assume that you didn’t wish to use any existing clients and instead wished to create a new client.

This led in many cases to customer’s databases containing numerous entries for what was essentially the same client, simply because users failed to select from the list of existing clients each time they added a booking.

There’s been a “Merge Clients” tool within MIDAS for a while now to allow administrators to merge the bookings & invoices of clients they deem to be essentially “identical”, however, we hope the need to use this tool will be minimized with a new feature in v4.11.

In v4.11 if you fail to select an existing client from the drop-down list of suggestions, and manually complete typing of a client’s name, MIDAS will check in the background whether there’s already one or more existing clients in the database that match the name you’ve manually typed into the client field. If there is, MIDAS will display of list of these clients, prompting you to “Use” one of these existing clients:

Prompt to use an existing client
Prompt to use an existing client

If, however, you really do want to create a new client, you can simply click dismiss this prompt to continue adding your booking with the new client.

MIDAS v4.11 will soon be generally available, however for now it is only available to Beta Testers. We’re currently looking for additional testers to help test and provide feedback/bug reports on this and future updates to our software before release. It’s free and no experience is required. Find out more here.

If you would like to be notified when v4.11 is fully released, then why not join our Mailing List?

Coming Soon in v4.07: Tax Exempt Clients

The next substantial update to our popular web based room booking and resource scheduling software is just around the corner, and throughout this month, we’re outlining some of the new features and improvements you can expect to see in the upcoming v4.07 release….

Making Clients Exempt From Tax

We love feedback and suggestions from our customers, and this next feature arises from just such a suggestion (which eagle-eyed readers may have already spotted in a screenshot from our previous post!)

MIDAS already includes powerful invoicing capabilities, allowing you to set flexible room rates for each day of the week as well as different lengths (durations) of booking. In additional, you can also setup discount rates depending upon the type of booking (for example, community hires can be charged at a lower rate than commercial hire of your facilities)

These extensive invoice capabilities are further enhanced for v4.07, as we’re introducing a new per-client setting allowing individual clients to be excluded from having the standard global tax rate you’ve setup for your system (via MIDAS Admin Options → Manage MIDAS → Invoicing) applied to their generated invoices.

Making Clients Tax Exempt
Tax Exempt Client

New Tool: Import Client Data into MIDAS

One of the things we frequently get asked by our customers is; “Is there a way to import my existing data into MIDAS?”. Well, we’ve listened to you, and have now released an easy-to-use import tool to allow you to do just that!

Using our free import tool, you can import client data into MIDAS v3.00 or later, that is either in a .csv (Comma Separated Values), or a .txt (Tab, or other character, Delimited) file format.

This means that provided your 3rd party application allows you to export client/contact data in one of these formats, you can easily import it directly into MIDAS!

You can also use our import tool to import data directly from a spreadsheet application, such as Microsoft’s Excel!

We’ve even give you the option to replace, or simply add to your existing client data when importing new data!

Here’s a few screenshots of the new import tool:

Step 1 - Select data to import
Step 2 - Import settings
Step 3 - Import data

For further information, and to download our free import tool, please see the following Knowledgebase Article:
How do I import client data from another application into MIDAS?