Managing Duplicate Profiles in Your Database
If you have not read Profiles and Accounts, and FAQ for Profiles and Accounts, we recommend you do so before reading this help file.
This help file will help you understand how to avoid duplicate profiles in your system, and what to do if you have them.
How are duplicates created?
GoDoChurch uses people's last name and email address to map any accounts created on the mobile app or admin system with any currently existing profiles. If you have added someone to your database, but they later created an account for themselves via the mobile app using a different email address than the one recorded in their profile on the database, then this will create a second profile for that person.
How can we avoid creating duplicates?
The system does its best to help prevent duplicates. If you create a profile on the admin system with similar info to another already existing profile, the system will prompt you with the current data available. The problem arises when congregants sign up on the app using different info than their profiles in the database. Because of this, when advertising the app to your congregation we recommend asking them to sign up using the same email address you have recorded in your admin system. You might want to set up a help desk where people can first check if their details are on the system before creating an account on the app.
Resolving duplicates can be a frustrating and time-consuming exercise, so prevention is definitely better than cure.
Is deleting duplicate profiles really necessary?
Absolutely. If there are profiles in your database with the same name, but different email addresses, how will you know which profile to update, or communicate with? It is vital that your church administrator regularly removes any duplicate profiles from the system. Duplicates also bloat the size of your database and can end up pushing your church into a higher monthly price bracket.
I found a duplicate, now what?
Ultimately, your goal is to delete one of the two profiles from the system. But before you do that there is some tricky housekeeping that needs to be done. You need to establish the following three things:
Which of the existing profiles contains the most up-to-date info about the person's involvement in church?
Which profile contains the members preferred contact details?
Do any of the profiles have an account associated with it, and if so, does the person use that account to log into the app?
Step 1: Decide which of the profiles you want to keep
If a duplicate profile was created by a user via the mobile app then you can assume the details they entered when creating the account are their preferred contact details. We recommend keeping this profile. If you don't keep this profile, be aware that the member will lose access to the app temporarily (since their account is associated with the profile you are about to delete), and they will need to create a new account using the details contained in the profile you have chosen to keep.
Step 2: Manually migrate the person's involvement to the new profile
This can be a laborious task. Put simply, you need to update the profile you are keeping with any info from the profile you are deleting. This includes: groups, lists, ministries, news subscriptions, roles, event registrations, follow up records, family info, etc.
Step 3: Manually remove the old profile from all aspects of the system
The system will not let you delete a person if they are current associated with other modules in the system. You need to manually remove them from each aspect of the system in order to delete them. You can easily remove them from ministries, lists, and growth paths by opening their profile, clicking on the Involvement tab, and then unticking the boxes. Events, groups, Ministry point person and Follow up point person, all need to be removed manually.
Step 4: Delete the profile
You are now ready to delete the person's profile.
Open the profile.
Under the Basic Info tab, scroll to the bottom and click Delete.