Sales data logically in to ACT!
C I Corporation - ACTConvert.com
ACT! - Data Conversions
SalesLogix is the "big brother" program to ACT! It is made by the same company, InterACT, a division of Best Software. It was also created by the same Father of Contact Management, Pat Sullivan. But for some organization, SalesLogix is too much for their needs.
SalesLogix is a more expensive product, and includes a very good conversion from ACT! to SalesLogix. But they don't include a way to go the other direction. That's where we come in.
The "SalesLogix to ACT Conversion Process" is a series of procedures and programs which convert any SalesLogix database into any ACT! version format. We can convert your:
We have refined the process down to about 3-4 hours. We've put the data back and forth between ACT! and SalesLogix many times over the years. Usually we do the job overnight, so people can leave off with SalesLogix one day, and start with ACT the next day.
As different organizations use SalesLogix and ACT! in different ways, we would like to have a phone number to call someone familiar with your database, just in case we have questions about unusual particulars during the conversion.
SalesLogix has a very particular setup that is not easily duplicated on our end. That's why they have SalesLogix consultants to set it up on customer sites. So it is more cost effective for you if we log in to your existing environment for the data extraction phase.
When we are done with the process, we will call and send you an email with the ACT_DATA.ZIP file attached (if it is a small database), or a link to download the file with your browser. For your security, this folder will be have an unguessable name. In addition, we will encrypt the ZIP file. We want zero chance that anyone else will get your data.
Our Consulting Rates - Usually the job takes
about 3-4 hours, for about US$ 200-300.
The cost depends on several factors:
We can provide you an estimate at no cost or obligation.
For some clients, we do the conversion on a weekly basis at a substantial discount. For example, a salesman who likes to use SalesLogix, can send his database to his Sales Manager who uses ACT! for activity analysis. This way they are both happy.
Some features of SalesLogix have no direct or easy equivalent in ACT! But we can discuss alternatives or ACT! Add-Ons for such features as:
Each conversion improves the process as more and more of these limitations are overcome.
We do a thorough check to make sure all the information that is possible,
comes across from SalesLogix to ACT!
For example, we perform a Field Name Checking procedure. You will find an ACT Admin record used for this check. But if we miss anything the we should have converted, we do that at no additional cost. Please keep in mind that the reason this conversion was not included in ACT! was that it is very difficult.
We have been working to develop a generic software package that "does it all" but this has proven difficult as there are a surprising number of variations in the way people use SalesLogix and ACT! Plus, the Shark data is not always in the right place and may require some cleanup preparation. It's the exceptions that require special data handling.
The process still involves a number of expensive different programming tools which must be bought from software companies.
This list does not include the all important special programs and scripts written to make the conversion work. So it is best converted by a qualified database technician who already owns and has experience with these tools.
Even if we were able to create one conversion program, you would probably only need it for a one-time run. The program (and possible technical support) would cost more than our service work to do it, anyway. You might not use these database tools again and they would sit on your shelf.
We take care and run cross checking routines to verify that the data has converted properly. We know what to look for. The process is getting better and more refined just about every day. So you benefit from the latest refinements.
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That is a good question. If ACT! did, we would not have bothered developing the procedure.
For one thing, it takes a number of different software packages to accomplish the job: Sybase SQL, Sequitter Codebase, Microsoft Visual Studio and ZedTek's ZTreeWin. This would be too expensive.
It may come down to one word: "BLoB." ACT's BLB file stands for "Binary Large oBject." This is where the Notes, Email addresses, Attachment paths, Passwords, Usernames, etc. are stored. Blob is a good name for it. It is a complex file, and one wrong byte corrupts it. So special care must be taken to ensure the information from SalesLogix goes into the right place.
The conversion process takes more than a simple MAP file. Other programs, such as Outlook, can be easily imported. It is just a matter of matching the fields from one data file into ACT!'s structure. But SalesLogix's data structure is not that simple.
Another obstacle is the date format used in ACT! Instead of storing March 15, 2001 as "03-15-2001", ACT! stores this as "ZJ1D!" This was done to save bytes of storage space while storing the date as well as the time of day. So simple field mapping cannot be used, and a special conversion function must be used. So it may come down to another word - ZJ1D!
We are working to develop something that could be included in the ACT! product. But it would have to be compact enough, easy to run, and fit well into the ACT! menu system. That is a challenge in itself. So, for now, it is a special process.
It took someone knowledgeable and determined (stubborn) enough to pave a path for many frustrated SalesLogix users to move in to ACT! Rick Shaddock is an expert in contact management databases and database design. He has used both ACT! and SalesLogix since they hit the market in the early 1990's. He has performed various experiments on the products, such as importing over 1 million records to see if it will blow up ACT! (It didn't, but ran very slowly.)
As our Chief Contact Converter, he has been both an ACT! Certified Consultant (1992 - 2001) and SalesLogix Consultant. He has achieved certification in other contact managers, and as a Microsoft Certified Professional. He has proven himself in the field, handling hundreds of clients, taken the required advanced seminars, and passed the exams with the highest marks.
Dr. Shaddock (PhD in Computer Science) did his graduate work and dissertation on relational database modeling theory. He is proficient with the programming tools needed to develop the process: ACT SDK, CodeBase, Btrieve, Open Data Base Connectivity (ODBC), Structured Query Language (SQL), Microsoft Access and Microsoft Visual Studio - including Visual Basic and Visual FoxPro.
In order to accurately and objectively advise our clients which is best, C I
Corporation puts its own company database in one or the other, when a significantly new
version comes out in ACT! or SalesLogix. We want to keep on top of the latest
features of all the major contact managers, and be able to compare and contrast them.
This way we can speak from years of daily hands-on experience. Clients asked "Why is ACT! better than SalesLogix?" We wanted to be able to give an experienced answer. Some consultants can only offer advice about the one program they are certified in. At C I Corporation, we do our best to try all the major options, and compare and contrast them, in order to call ourselves consultants.
Like you, when it is time for a switch, we want to retain all our precious notes,
groups, and history records. The conversion procedures included in SalesLogix and ACT! do
not completely convert their competitor's format. A lot gets lost in the translation.
So, out of necessity, we have developed programs and procedures over the years to help us convert quickly and completely. We are experts in what is happening at the deep file and table relationships level.
Since 1992, we were quite satisfied with ACT! and may never have tried, much less mastered SalesLogix, except for a temporary difference of opinion years ago with Symantec Corporation, which used to market ACT! But it proved to be a fortunate thing for ACT! that we looked in to competing products and developed conversion processes.
We offer training and consulting in contact management and other popular business software.
Please click on the following links, or feel free to call with any questions.
Before in SalesLogix
After in ACT!