Looking up a customer
Many LocPlus MLS functions require finding or adding a customer. This document will lead you through the process of Looking up and then adding a customer. The new customer we will use is:
123 Main Street
Detroit, Michigan 48202
Phone: (313) 555-1000
Fax (313) 555-1001
Contact person: John Doe
Title: Plant Manager
Although this document does not contain a comprehensive description of all customer software, this tutorial will point out many of the most important features.
Adding a new customer:
There are a number of ways to start adding a new customer. This is the preferred way:
- Start LocPlus MLS. The menu bar is the list of options on the top line of the LocPlus MLS window.
- From the menu bar select "FILE / FIND CUSTOMER". Notice the label "F1" next to the option "FIND CUSTOMER" on the menu bar. The label "F1" means that pressing the F1 function key has the same effect as selecting that menu option. In other words, you could have pressed the :"F1" function key instead of selecting "FILE / FIND CUSTOMER" from the menu bar. Use the feature you prefer. Although remembering the use of function keys may seem more difficult, it is faster and you may wish to start learning frequently used function keys.
- The "FIND CUSTOMER" window will be displayed. This window can be used to lookup new customers. Normally, before adding a customer, you may want to verify that they aren't already in the system first. In the upper left corner of the window there is a field labeled "LOOK UP BY:". Point the mouse to that pull-down and click. Select "CONTACT NAME" from the list of Look up by: options.
- After you select "CONTACT NAME", there will be a field displayed labeled "LAST NAME". Press the tab key to get to that field or click on that field with the mouse. Enter "DOE" in last name field and press the enter key.
- You will be on the "FIRST NAME" field. Enter "JO" and press the enter key.
- With the mouse, click on the "SEARCH NOW" button. As an alternative, you could have pressed the tab key or the enter key three times to move control to the "SEARCH NOW" button.
- After you click on the search button, any matching customers will be displayed in the list at the bottom of the window. Presumably you will not have any customers with the name "JOHN DOE". You should probably check to see if you have any record of John's company Acme Tools in your system. To do this, change the "LOOK UP BY:" pull-down in the upper left corner of the window to "COMPANY NAME".
- The first lookup field is labeled "COMPANY". Press the tab key or use the mouse to select the company field. Enter "ACME" in the company name field. NOTE: MLS 2000 Software ignores spaces, punctuation and capitalization when it performs lookups on things like names. Don't worry about making sure your punctuation is the same. "ACE Grinding", "A. C. E. Grinding", and "A C & E Grinding" will all look the same to MLS 2000 during lookups. Press the enter key. The cursor should be in the field labeled "CITY:".
- Type "DE" in the city field. You don't need to enter in the entire name. Entering "DE" will require that the company's city start with the letters "DE", but that could include "DETROIT", "DEARBORN", and "DES MOINES". Press the enter key (or tab key) twice to move control down to the "SEARCH NOW" button. Press the enter key to initiate your search. As an alternative, you could have pointed the mouse arrow at the "SEARCH NOW" button and then clicked.
- If there are any matching companies, they will be shown in the list at the bottom of the window. Presumably if there are any matches, they will not be for our company! If our company was listed, we could point the mouse arrow at the company name and double-click. This would find our customer and put us in edit mode. Also please note that if you don't enter enough information, there may be too many matching customers. To avoid lengthy processing delays, MLS 2000 will stop after finding too many matches. There will be a prominent message notifying you that the maximum number of matches has been exceeded. The maximum number can be adjusted, but it is probably wiser to enter more restrictive information like a longer name or the company's state.
- Since we cannot find our customer, we will want to add them to our mailing list. Point the mouse to the button labeled "NEW CUSTOMER" in the middle of the window. Double click on that button.
- The "CUSTOMER INFORMATION" window will be displayed. The cursor will be on the field labeled "COMPANY". Enter the company name "ACME TOOLS". The use of upper and lower case or other punctuation is at your discretion. MLS 2000 will be able to lookup customers without any problem regardless of the case you use for the name fields. When the company name is printed on quotes or in reports it will be printed as you enter it. Enter the name as you would like to see it aesthetically in printed documents. Then press the enter key.
- In the address field enter "123 Main Street". Press the enter key and continue entering the company information at the beginning of this tutorial. There are three address lines that you can use. This address only needs one address line. Foreign addresses are longer and sometimes require all three lines. If you print address labels, you may have to use larger labels if some of your addresses use all these lines. It's your option as to how many address lines you choose to use. The "COUNTRY" field is a pull-down field. You may click on the pull-down with your mouse to choose the country. If the country is not displayed, just enter the country in the field. Our company is in "U.S.A.", enter that in the country field. After you enter a new country, you will be notified that the "COUNTRY IS NOT ON FILE". Press "YES" if you want to add this new country. NOTE: It is useful to be consistent in the spelling of the country name. If English companies are labeled "U.K.", "BRITTIAN", "UK", and "ENGLAND" it is more difficult to get a list of all companies in England.
- Continue entering the phone number and fax number. It doesn't make any difference what kind of phone punctuation you use because MLS 2000 ignores the "(", "-", and spaces. Phone numbers will be displayed how you enter them. Enter the company phone & fax before entering contact names because the contact phone & fax will be preset to those values.
- Use the mouse to point to and press the button labeled "NEW" next to the "CONTACT NAMES:" grid in the upper right corner of the window. Enter the name "John Doe" along with John's title and email address. Since John is our only contact at this company, we want our distributions to go to him, so make sure that the "INCLUDE IN MAILING LIST" checkbox is marked. (You can have two or more people marked to receive mailings, but note that that will cause two or more documents to go out to that company). Press the "EXIT" button with the mouse.
- You will now be back in the "COMPANY INFORMATION" window. You will be able to see John's name in the grid labeled "CONTACT NAMES" in the upper right corner of the window. Notice that if you wanted to change John's name to Johnny, you could use the mouse to click on the grid where his name is visible. Then retype the name. The email address is not visible, so you obviously cannot change his email address this way. If you want to change his email address, you must double-click with your mouse on John's name or phone number. The "CONTACT PERSON" window will be redisplayed where you can change it.
- Acme Tool is an end user. The owner type field should already be set to end user. If you are entering a dealer, change this pull-down with the mouse to dealer. The owner type is important when reviewing equipment for sale or reviewing wanted equipment requests.
- With the mouse, click on the tab marked "CUSTOMER CODES". At the bottom of the window there is a field labeled "HOME PAGE ADDRESS". Enter Acme's web site in this field. (www.yahoo.com). Press the button labeled "UPDATE" at the bottom of the window.
YOU ARE DONE WITH ENTERING CUSTOMER INFORMATION! This customer record is saved. You can press the "EXIT" button in the lower right corner of the window.
MLS 2000 keeps track of the last few customers, equipment, and wanted equipment requests that you have entered. You should see an option on the menu bar marked "HISTORY". Select it with your mouse. The top line in the HISTORY submenu should be "C: ACME TOOLS". This is the last item you entered…a customer Acme Tools. Select that line. The "CUSTOMER INFORMATION" window will be displayed for Acme Tools. Remember this feature because it is the fastest way to retrieve information which you have recently saved.
If you are connected to the internet, there are a couple of other features you should examine.
- There is a button labeled "INTERNET MAP". If you press that button, you will automatically be connected to a Yahoo Mapquest map to this companies address.
- There is a button labeled "INTERNET PHONEBOOK". If you press that button, you will automatically be connected to a Yahoo Phonebook with an attempt to lookup this company. This could be very useful if the company has moved or their area code had changed.
- If you are still on the "CUSTOMER CODE" tab, there is a button labeled "GO TO COMPANY WEB SITE". If you have entered a company web site press this button to go directly to their web site. This is a useful feature if you want to lookup email addresses or other information about the company.
ACME TOOLS wants some equipment. What do I do?
Once are looking at the company information you should check to see if they have any equipment they want to sell or if they have any outstanding equipment requests. With your mouse, click on the tab marked "OWNED / QUOTES / WANTED / ARCHIVE". This tab has a list of all equipment that Acme Tool has that is available for sale. There are three buttons on the right that will indicate the following
- Number of quotes to Acme Tools
- Number of equipment wanted requests from Acme Tools
- Number of equipment items that Acme Tools owns but are not 'for sale' (These are called archive and include equipment that you have sold to Acme Tools)
Since Acme Tools has just been added, there shouldn't be any quotes, wanted requests, or archive equipment for them.
The next tutorial is assumes Acme Tools wants some equipment. It will guide you through the process of adding a wanted request, finding equipment, and sending a quote.
Select this link to continue with the next lesson: Tutorial: Enter an Equipment Request