Adding custom fields for organisations

In this article

Overview of intended functionality
Adding custom fields
Changing existing custom fields and response options
Batch-updating custom field response data
Custom fields in action

Overview of intended functionality

While we've tried to anticipate the most common information needs when storing organisations in the Network module, you may want to record additional information that doesn't fit neatly in any of the standard fields. For example, perhaps you'd like to distinguish organisations or churches that are part of your network and those who are considering joining. You can create Custom fields to handle this information. Organisation custom fields can be created purely for internal-use or can be made visible in the embed feed for your website

You can select from a variety of data formats for custom fields - Text fields (single sentence, paragraph, email, phone), List fields (checkbox for multi-select, drop-down for single select, radio) and a Date field. Each field's Name and Option labels have a 250 max. character limit and responses for Single sentence and Paragraph type fields also have a 250 max. character length. Each custom field can be optionally set required in ChurchSuite (affecting Network module Users).

Custom fields are fully searchable using the module's Advanced Search and as conditions in Address Book Smart Tags.

Adding custom fields

To add a custom field, head into the Network module settings, accessible by clicking the 'cogwheels' module settings icon within the module. You'll need Manage module or Administrator permissions to access this section.

On the Module Options tab scroll down to the Custom Fields section and click Add custom field.

Give the custom field an appropriate Name and select the Response Type. Depending on the response type you can set response Options by clicking Add option. You can re-order response options by clicking the re-ordering control to the left of each option, or remove an unwanted option entirely using the red cross to the right of each option. You can also set whether the field is required in ChurchSuite. If set as required, module Users will be required to complete the custom field when adding or editing organisations.

Remember to click Save to add the new custom field.The newly-added custom field is added to the end of the list of custom fields but note the option to re-order by clicking the Order control.

Custom field responses can be managed when adding or editing an organisation's details, with required fields distinguished with a red asterisk. Scroll down the pop-up to locate the Custom Fields section.

Custom fields and responses are surfaced on the Details tab when viewing an organisation's profile page.

Changing existing custom fields and response options

You can make changes to custom field settings and response options by selecting Edit from the action menu (shown below). Note that a View changes log is maintained for all changes subsequently made to that custom field. You can also permanently (immediately and irreversibly) Delete an unwanted custom field, which will also remove all organisations' responses so delete with caution.

When editing a custom field you can change the Order of options in the list. Click the re-order control to the left of the option name. The option order is respected across ChurchSuite. Additionally, making a change to a custom field's Name or Option label will immediately make that change known across the platform. For example, changing an existing option from "Region" to "Area" will update all organisations in the module whose data had the old response to now have the new response.

From time to time you may wish to remove unwanted response options that no longer serve a useful purpose. Clicking the X next to a response option will give you a choice to permanently (immediately and irreversibly) Delete the option - which will delete all knowledge of that response from all organisations - or to Archive the response option.

Having made a selection to archive or delete, remember to click Save on the Edit pop-up. Archived response options can later be Set active again if desired. Archiving an option will cause it to no longer be available to select when adding new data but will continue to show (with strike-through) at the bottom of the list of response options in the module settings and remain as the selected option against any organisation that has previously chosen it. Therefore, it's possible to edit an organisation that has an archived response option, make an unrelated change and the archived option will persist against that organisation when it is saved. Archived response options remain fully searchable in Smart Tags.

In the example below, the "West" response option has previously been archived. Clicking the green tick to the right of the archived response option, it can now be Set as active again or permanently Deleted (or click the green tick again to dismiss those actions). Remember to Save the pop-up when you have finished making changes.

Note that it's only possible to change the response Type to another within the same subtype, as follows:

  • List subtype: Checkbox List, Drop-Down List, Radio List
  • Non-list subtype: Email, Phone, Single Sentence, Paragraph
  • Date subtype: Date

Batch-updating custom field response data

When adding a new custom field that is required - and where you have existing organisations - the Batch Update action can be used to assign a default value to all those organisations. This action is only available for required fields, but you can temporarily set a field required to perform a batch update to assign a default value, and then un-require the field afterwards.

Selecting Batch update will open a pop up enabling you to select the default response option to be written to all organisations. Note that this will update organisations in the site/s being viewed. Only those organisations without an existing valid custom field response value will be updated - those organisations with an existing response value (active or archived) will not be changed.

Custom fields in action

Custom Fields can be updated when editing an organisation in ChurchSuite. Any custom fields that are required are distinguished by a red asterisk. Module Users will not be able to save the pop-up until all the required fields, including required custom fields, have valid entries.

Custom fields are shown on the Details tab of an organisation's profile page.

They can be used as Smart Tag conditions to match people who have or don't have certain custom field options.

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