suggestions, open for comment

Discussions around using and interfacing with the Church MLS program.
kisaac
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Postby kisaac » Mon Dec 20, 2010 12:29 pm

RussellHltn wrote:That's really an individual member's preference. I'm sure there are others that are quite the opposite.


It's not a big deal, but I guess I'm pointing out that there isn't a way to show my preference of: "call my home number first in all cases, then try my cell." My only option is not to list my cell number. Others may wish the opposite, but it IS a matter of preference.

To indicate this it would require two numbers to be displayed in all MLS lists for me, and this is not the case. To my knowledge there is no way to specify a Primary number and a secondary number, only "household" and "individual."

donaldmkitchen
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Postby donaldmkitchen » Tue Dec 21, 2010 2:01 am

RussellHltn wrote:That's really an individual member's preference. I'm sure there are others that are quite the opposite.


By better I mean least likely to get a hostile reaction. Calling a cell phone at
inconvenient time, using minutes when landline will do, or when cell meant only
for urgent matters has decent odds to make a person unhappy. Calling a home
landline when the person is not home is not 'better in the sense it will get directly
to the person quickly', but 'better in the sense that it's much less likely the person
answering will feel like the caller should not have called'.

So it occurs to me to wonder how to resolve when people don't want to
get calls on their cell when the household number will do. 'Contact Phone'
prefers cell over household phone.

One way would be to have a second 'Contact Phone' that prefers household
phone over individual phone. However this seems to only complicate the issue
and depends on the unit to use it in a way that actually solves something.

A better way seems to be to have a checkbox when entering individual phone
numbers, labeled something like "use as 'contact number' instead of household
phone". The box is checked depending on the person, of course, and then
the contact number column can be reliably used as the normal phone number.
You're absolutely right, it's an individual's preference, except without this MLS has
no way to record the person's preference, only the raw information of which phone
is the shared/household phone and which is direct to the individual, leaving the
caller to make the assumption (if both are printed) or MLS programmers to make
the assumption (with the 'contact number' field as it is now)

For maximum flexibility, do both! Call the new field 'Secondary Contact Phone', have
it be the opposite of whatever the regular contact field was. Then there will be two
phone numbers to choose from, and they can be printed as: always the household
and always the individual, or printed as which to call first (contact phone) and which
to call when necessary (secondary contact phone).

donaldmkitchen
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Postby donaldmkitchen » Wed Jan 12, 2011 4:35 am

There seems to be no dissent for several of the points.

-that the preference to call the individual number first or the household
number first is a member's preference and that it would be good for MLS
to record this preference and base the Contact Number field on it

-that a corresponding Secondary Contact Number field be created which is
opposite to the normal one

-that MLS should request membership details for out-of-unit membership records

-that out-of-unit memberships should not be listed as not being home taught
(though perfectly fine to visit or be visited)

So I would like to request that an administrator place in those points in
the MLS Suggestions wiki.

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aebrown
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Postby aebrown » Wed Jan 12, 2011 9:47 am

donaldmkitchen wrote:There seems to be no dissent for several of the points.


I'll provide a bit of dissent -- see below.

donaldmkitchen wrote:-that the preference to call the individual number first or the household number first is a member's preference and that it would be good for MLS to record this preference and base the Contact Number field on it

-that a corresponding Secondary Contact Number field be created which is opposite to the normal one


I can't disagree with the particular scenarios that are described, and I can see how these could be useful. But I do disagree with adding these features nonetheless. Every contact feature you add to MLS then probably has to be added to all sorts of reports, the Directory and Leader Tools on LDS.org (and many more applications to come), LDS Tools, etc. For each of these places, a user interface that is already complex with lots of options and fields will become more complex. I personally don't find these suggestions to be sufficiently compelling to justify the additional complexity.

donaldmkitchen wrote:-that MLS should request membership details for out-of-unit membership records

-that out-of-unit memberships should not be listed as not being home taught (though perfectly fine to visit or be visited)


I agree with both of those.

donaldmkitchen wrote:So I would like to request that an administrator place in those points in the MLS Suggestions wiki.


The request for MLS to pull membership details for out-of-unit membership records was already there. But I have added the other three suggestions.
Questions that can benefit the larger community should be asked in a public forum, not a private message.


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