Messenger v5 – Data Syncronisation

Introduction

Below are the most common tasks you need to know if you are an administrator in Messenger v5 and wish to know more about the way Messenger v5 sychronises data with an external source such as your MIS. We have more in depth guides available that cover other areas of administration in Messenger v5.

 

Please see individual topics below, or alternatively expand all.

 

 

How do I know if I am an administrator?

Admin Tools Menu

When you are logged in as an Admin user you will see the following tools menu;

Some items, such as User Preferences and Release Notes, are available to all users.


Mv5 Data Synchronisation and ‘Refresh Now’

Mv5 Data Synchronisation & 'Refresh Now'

Messenger v5 provides automatic data synchronisation between itself and your MIS to keep data as up to date and accurate as possible.

To see more about this function, we have provided a diagram, which you might find helpful.
The specifics of integration may vary dependent on your MIS and integration method. Please take a look at this excerpt (taken from the Messenger v5 Data Security Summary) for the specifics in your school.

Dependent on your specific set-up, the integration will take place during various scheduled synchronisation windows (e.g. hourly between 7am and 5pm and once overnight). There may be times when you would like to refresh the data held by Messenger v5 so that it is up-to-date with your MIS.

Examples:

  • You need to send an attendance message.
    • The automatic sync took place 15 minutes ago.
    • Registers were saved 5 minutes ago.
    • Instead of having to wait 45 minutes or risk out of date lists of absent students you can update that data on demand using Messenger v5's 'Refresh Now' function.
  • You have changed a phone number in the MIS of a parent and want to get the new phone number on the recipient list of an important message.
    • The automatic sync took place 2 minutes ago.
    • Instead of having to wait another 58 minutes, or risk changing the number in messenger v5, you can update that data on demand using Messenger v5's 'Refresh Now' function.

In order to do this, please follow the following steps;

  1. In the footer of the Messenger v5 website there is an icon made up of 3 small rectangles (shown magnified in the screenshot below).M5_Refresh_Dots
  2. Simply click this icon, it will load a pop up box that tells you the last sync time, giving you the option to view settings (if you are an administrator) and request a sync to 'run now'.M5_Refresh_Now_PopUp
  3. If the ‘Last updated n minutes/hours/days ago’ value is before the change was made in the MIS, simply press ‘Request Now’ and wait for a few minutes for the data to synchronise between your MIS and Messenger.
    • You will be able to see the updates progress thanks to the icon becoming animated with green cycling rectangles and the pop up box will show which updates are running.
    • The sync can take up to 20 minutes but is usually much quicker and varies based on a number of factors including network/server speed and database size.M5_Refresh_Now_InProgress
  4. When the pop up box shows with no jobs running and the icon is showing as 3 static white rectangles, you will know the update has taken place.
  5. You can build your distribution list (i.e. select recipients and filter list to suit) and compose your message whilst the sync is taking place to save time, but you must not send it before the sync has completed successfully.
    • On a technical level, the database searching takes place twice for each message you send;
      • First when you build the distribution list.
      • Second when the message is sent.
    • This means that if you look at a single contact's information during a sync you may see the 'old' information. However, when you send the message after the sync completes successfully, it will be correct.

 


 

 

 

 

 

 


Data outside of the MIS

Upload Data

The upload data page allows you to import lists of contacts via a spreadsheet.

This is outside of the MIS automatic synchronisation enabled in the majority of schools and so should be used with care so as to avoid data conflicts.

We strongly recommend that schools using MIS data synchronisation do not also use csv data upload as there are several considerations to take in and the processes must be carefully managed.

If you believe you have a case for the use of csv upload in your school please contact us to discuss this so we can advise you on an individual basis to ensure the integrity of your data and systems.

Based on this, no detailed discussion of the csv upload process will be detailed in the main User and Admin guides. We can provide documentation to those schools that require it.

 


Next Steps...

If you need any further assistance or get in to any difficulty, please contact your School Administrator. Alternatively, they can contact Groupcall Support on your behalf.

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