Get the FAQs: Common Questions in the ResultsPlus Support Queue

faq-puzzleI often review the requests from customers that come into the ResultsPlus support queue to get a feel for how our customers are using their database. The questions they ask, the scenarios they describe, and the problems they encounter provide very valuable information as we continue to look for ways to improve and grow ResultsPlus.

There are a few questions that we get more often than others, and I thought it might be helpful to share what our technicians generally offer as they assist people with these issues

question-mark My mail merge documents were working just fine last week, but now that we got new hardware, suddenly none of them work. What’s up with that?

ResultsPlus makes it easy to create and send Microsoft Word mail merge documents using the ResultsPlus Mailing Wizard. In addition to minimizing the back-and-forth steps between the programs, it handles the technical rules set by Microsoft that allow this automated process to happen. But as security issues have become more prevalent, so have the Microsoft rules become more stringent. As a result, anytime that changes are made to the process, we can expect there to be issues.

The general rule of thumb is this: use the Mailing Wizard to create and save your mail merge templates, then leave them be until it’s time to merge data into them. Don’t try to move them, rename them, or edit them directly in Word. Any of these actions will likely break the links between the steps and cause the mail merge to fail.

If you do need to move your mail merge documents from an old server to a new one, try to keep the directory names consistent and it may just work. Otherwise, you’ll need to edit each document to re-establish the connection between the template and the header file.

You can use the ‘Edit’ option of the wizard to make changes to the verbiage of the document, but if any changes are needed that involve database fields or filenames, your time would best be spent creating a new document.

question-mark I get an error message when I attempt to look up information in the help system. It says the web page cannot be displayed. I also can’t see any of the built-in reports. Am I missing something?

Most often these errors indicate that the workstation has been installed incorrectly. It is not uncommon for installers to miss the step that identifies the ResultsPlus Primary Directory, where your help and report files live. You can either reinstall the workstation, taking care to identify both the local directory and the network directory, or call support for help running a utility to re-point your workstation toward the Primary Directory.

question-mark My Executive Director keeps asking me for lists of donors who gave to certain appeals, or during certain time periods, or at a certain level, and I have no idea where to start. Can you help me?

Query scares a lot of us. But once you get the hang of it, it can be a very powerful tool to help you segment your donors and analyze your data. The shortcut to making you look really smart in response to these requests is to use one of the standard ResultsPlus reports. Chances are there are one or more reports that will show what your boss is looking for. Check out screenshots and descriptions of all the reports in the user assistance area (How To tab > All Topics > Running Reports).

When you’re ready to tackle queries, use any or all of the helpers built into the How To system:

  • Watch any or all of the 5 recorded tutorials that focus on query. (How To tab > Tutorials > Show me!)
  • Utilize the list of FAQs – frequently asked queries – to help you build the query you need. (How To tab > All Topics > Working with Queries > Tips and Techniques)
  • Schedule some personalized one-on-one remote training on the topic of queries. In addition to learning how to build the queries you need, you’ll be actually building the queries you need, all with the help of an instructor.

Of course, not all calls to the ResultsPlus support line fit into one of these three common categories and we’ll be glad to help you with your other technical issues as well. Reach us at 1-800-222-4096 or via email to rphelp@metafile.com.

Wishing you all treats and no tricks - Happy Halloween from your friends at Metafile!