How do I combine records?

There are two routes you can take to combine records in Redtail. The quickest, easiest method is available from your Contacts by Duplicate Names Report, as if the records you are looking to combine show up in that report, no searching is necessary on your part. Instructions for combining records from the Contacts by Duplicate Names Report are available here. Note: whichever of these two routes you take, the information below will give you more detail about how to determine which record you want to keep as well as a list of the data that is and is not transferred when combining records.

You can also combine records from your Advanced Search page, as that action is available from your contact options --> bulk actions menu. You first need to bring up the records you would like to combine on your Advanced Search (or Contacts A-Z or Favorites) page. 

As an example, let’s say that you mistakenly created two Client Records for John Smith and you're viewing those in search results:


To combine these records, you'll first need to select both records by placing checks next to their name as in the example above. Then, click Contact Options and select Bulk Actions. You'll then see the below:


Select Combine Contacts. You'll then see the below:


You can then click inside the box to indicate which contact will be the Primary Contact, i.e. the Contact record you are keeping and merging the other contact(s) into. Note when doing so that the Contact Status, along with some other identifying data, for each of the records being combined is displayed - this will allow you to select the one you want to retain. This may require that you change the Contact Status of the records you aren't keeping prior to combination.

What we recommend is that you 1) look at the list of fields below that do and do not transfer when combining records, and 2) determine which of the duplicate records has the most important information (of the data that won't be transferred). All data that existed in the Primary Contact's record prior to combining records will be preserved. Note as well that, for all contacts being merged into the Primary Contact, the first merge contact in the list of contacts-to-merge is the next-most-important record, i.e., their information is second in priority in terms of what data will be preserved where there is no conflict with the Primary Contact, and so on down the line of contacts to be merged. Since there is no way to change the order when combining contacts, if you are combining more than two contacts, we'd recommend combining the Primary Contact with the next-most-important record first, the second-most-important record next, etc. In other words, you'd want to perform the Combine operation multiple times to ensure you preserve the information you'd like to preserve.

So, after you've selected the Primary Contact, click Combine.

All other records on this Combine dialog will be combined into that one record and then marked for deletion.  

Additionally, you may need to do some cleanup after combining records.  Since phone numbers, addresses and internet addresses do transfer from one record to another when combining, you will want to check to verify that you don’t have two different field values for the same type of phone number, address or internet address after the combination.

One final note - You should be aware that not all data will transfer from the deleted record to the record you are keeping.  Below is a list of data that does transfer when combining records and a list of data that does not:

Data that transfers when combining records:

Phone Numbers
Physical Addresses
Internet Addresses
Activities (both Completed and Open)
Account Activity associations
Account Details (Assets, Agent, Beneficiaries, BICE Dates, Coverage Info, Documents, Insured, Notes, Owner, Participant, Payment Info, Riders, Strategic Allocation Model, Transactions, UDFs)
UDFs (Contact UDFs)
Primary Contact Info 
Professional Contacts
Misc. Personal Info
Health Info
Assets & Liabilities
Know Your Client  (Important Info, Keywords, Personal Interests, Identifications, Employment Info, Banking Info)
Family (As with other types of data, familial relationships are given precedent based upon what relationships each record currently has and where each record falls in the pecking order of the Combine Contacts operation. It’s pretty clear cut if the Primary Contact already has family ties set up within your database - those relationships will prevail. Should the Primary Contact not have any family relationships established within your database, the Primary Contact will assume the family position of Contact B, if any is indicated. If not, they’d assume the family position of Contact C, if any indicated, and on down the line. As an example, if your Primary Contact is set up as a Family Head, they are going to remain Family Head, regardless of what part of a family Contact B, C, etc., have been established as. If, however, your Primary Contact doesn’t have any Family Relationships established, but Contact B is listed as a Spouse within their Family section, the Primary Contact will be situated as a Spouse within that Family after the Combine Contacts process is complete.)
Roles (Advisor, Associate Advisor, CSA)
Contact Permissions
Tag Groups
Orion contact integration mappings
SEI contact integration mappings
LPL contact integration mappings
Sharefile integration folder links

Data that does not transfer when combining records:

Contact Photos
Broadcast Email History
Some integration data, such as integration points between Riskalyze, Pocket Risk and FinaMetrica
Speak Rooms
- If you are a Redtail Speak user, and the record that you are deleting has a Speak Client Room, be aware that restoring that contact will not restore their Speak room.


Information you should know about combining some Types of Contact Records:

When combining business records with other business records:

Employees from the business records you are not keeping will transfer.

When combining individual records with a business record:

Items that don't pertain to business records will be removed.

If a spouse exists for the individual record that is being removed, that spouse will become the Family Head.

If there are any items not listed here that are present in the record you intend to delete, please contact our Support Team to verify whether or not they will transfer prior to combining your Records.

Note: When combining records, though you can indicate which record you want to "retain" for purposes of having their information supersede the other record's information, both records are actually deleted when the combination happens and a new contact record is created. This is important to know because if you determine a mistake has been made, or you have lost some data from the record being "replaced," both records are in your Recycle Bin, which allows you to restore one or both if necessary.

Note as well: all Combine Contact operations are now run as a job, allowing you to move onto other areas within the CRM as those jobs process.

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