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De-duplication and Merge

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There are template reports to help you identify duplicate People and Organisations? These are available within Start > Reports > New Template Report. Simply searching for 'Template Name Contains Duplicate' will highlight these reports.

If you have duplicated records in your database, Workbooks has the ability to merge them together. Only Person or Organisation records can be merged.

You must have the Merge module enabled, and the user must have the Capability called Merge. The user must also have full permissions on the records that are about to be merged. Therefore, we advise that only System Admins are given this capability.

Users with the Merge capability will see a Duplicates 2017-10-16_15-05-06.png or Merge 2017-10-16_15-03-16.pngbutton at the top of Person and Organisation records. As shown below, if Workbooks finds a duplicate, the button will change to convey this message.

Click the button to view the duplicates that Workbooks has found, to add any other duplicates that you know of, and to merge the relevant records together. A section will open up at the top of the page, the rest of your record will become read-only and the buttons at the top of the record will be disabled. Click Cancel merge to exit and go back to editing your record.

Workbooks detects duplicates using the main email address on Person records. On Organisations, it removes the common business suffixes from the end of the name, like Ltd or Corp, then does a 'starts with' search on Organisation names. For example, for 'Aerosystems PR Ltd' Workbooks has detected 'Aerosystems Products' as a duplicate. However, if you were on the 'Aerosystems Products' record then Workbooks would not detect 'Aerosystems PR Ltd' as a duplicate.

Select records are not duplicates

The above is clearly incorrect, so it is possible to select the row and click Selected records are not duplicates. This stops Workbooks from presenting the selected records as duplicates in the future.

No duplicates found

Workbooks may not find all of the duplicates. Below, 'Jane Doe' has been detected as a duplicate of 'Janey Doe' because the email address matches, but we know another 'Jane Doe' exists. If you are aware of any others, use Add additional duplicate records.

Add additional duplicate records

This opens a Search window, meaning you can use Names or Object References to find the duplicates. Any records that  you add in this way will be automatically ticked; you can then tick any other relevant rows and click Merge selected records. You can merge up to 5 records at one time.

Merge records

You will be taken to the Merge wizard, which will display all the records next to each other. Select which Object Reference you want the records to be merged onto. After the merge, this will be the only record that remains; the other records will be deleted. If you have an integration with an external system, or regularly use Object References in your imports, then be careful that you are not deleting records with Object References that are used in these processes.

Then select the values from each row that you want to keep.

Select fields to merge

Clicking Next will take you to a screen of the values you will have on your resulting merged record. It will also confirm which records are to be deleted. Click Merge once you are happy with this; the merge cannot be undone.

Confirmation of merge fields

Below is the resulting person record. All records with DLIs that had originally pointed to any of the merged People will be updated in the background so that they link to the correct Person, and show the correct Person name. Notes, Activities and relationships to other records have been copied across.

Resulting record

The Contact Details tab of the Person will now have a row for the previous Main Location Contact Details for each of the records you just merged together.

Contact details


  • It is not possible to merge any Organisation records with your Own Organisation.
  • If merging 2 people with different employers, i.e. the past employer and the current employer, we advise that you go through the Change of Employer wizard first, to ensure that the 'previous employer' relationship is created.
  • Some information may be lost. For example, if more than one of the Person records had been members of a single Campaign. Only one of the Campaign memberships can be kept, so the membership status and information in custom fields on the other memberships will be lost.