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Managing contacts on Sematime

Today we look at yet another article on our ongoing ‘Tutorials’ series which will cover all the aspects of contacts management for your Sematime account. To properly manage your contacts you need to know how to prepare them, add them into your account, editing them among other things. Lets get started, shall we?

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Categories of contacts

Contacts are the foundation of Sematime and the most important element of the entire user experience. We organize contacts into groups, e.g Form 1 parents, Maths teachers, Kitchen staff etc Each contact has a name, primary phone number and secondary phone number. Student contacts must also have the student’s admission number or the student’s unique identifier. Primary and secondary numbers lets schools associate both the father’s and mother’s phone numbers with each student to ensure that both receive regular updates from the school always.

There are 5 different categories of contacts in the system:

  1. Students – contains contacts of all students in your school
  2. Teachers – contains contacts of teachers in your school
  3. Non-Teaching Staff – contains contacts of your school’s non-teaching staff members
  4. Archives – contains all the contacts that you have archived. For example, contacts of classes that have finished schooling e.g. Class of 2014, Class of 2015 etc.
  5. Others – all other contacts that do not fall in the above categories e.g. BOM and PTA members.

 

Importing contacts from an Excel file

The best way to add contacts into your Sematime account is to import them from an existing MS Excel workbook. The file needs to be in either the .xls(Excel 97-2003) or .xlsx(Excel 2007 and later) file formats and must contain the following columns of data: NAME, PRIMARY PHONE NUMBER, SECONDARY PHONE NUMBER. For student contacts, we’ll have an additional ADMISSION NUMBER column where’s the name column should have the student’s name. See the image below.

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With your Excel file ready, now lets add the contacts to your account as described below:

  1. Go to Contacts and then click the Add Contacts button.
  2. You can either drag and drop the Excel file we created above on to the dotted area or click on Select File to browse for it in your computer.
  3. Choose group you want the contacts to go to or Create Group. If you choose to create a new group, you’ll be asked to select the type or category of the group.
  4. The group appears on your list of contact folders with the name you have given it, finish by clicking on Add Contacts.

Add contacts manually one after the other

Sometimes, importing contacts from an Excel file is not practical and especially when you are updating a group with new members. In this case, adding contacts one after the other would apply.

  1. Go to Contacts and then click the Add Contacts button.
  2. Select the Add manually one by one tab.
    manual-contacts-add
  3. Choose group you want the contacts to go to or Create Group. If you choose to create a new group, you’ll be asked to select the type or category of the group.
  4. Enter the contact details required then click the Add Contacts button.

 

 

Editing contacts

At times,  you want to change the name, phone number of a particular parent or maybe delete them from the system.To do so, use the following instructions:

  1. To change a Name, Phone Number you just need to double click on the details of the particular contact, the click  Save to apply the changes.
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  2. To delete a contact from the system maybe after transferring to another school, highlight on the contact and then choose Delete at the top right corner.
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  3. You can also Rename, Delete or Archive a group by right clicking on the name of a particular group and choosing your desired action.

Enable sending of messages to secondary numbers

By default, Sematime sends SMS messages, exam results, fee balances and event notifications to primary numbers only. To enable sending to secondary numbers, go to the Settings option on the top right corner, click on Others option and click on Secondary Numbers then tick the check box below and save changes.

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We hope you liked this tutorial, if you have any questions or suggestions on how best we can improve it, be sure to engage us in the comments.

Happy Sematiming! 🙂

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