I'm a real newbie to databases, but am a computer veteran of some 22 years.
I'm using Filemaker Pro to create a really simple customer tracking database, where I just log their details into a single page.
Now I want to add some extra functionality: I need to make a kind of sub database that can be attached to the main customer record where I can make lists of what each customer brings in to me to be repaired. I initially didn't think I'd get that much repeat work with what I do, but it's growing and my database is inadequate.
Any suggestions on how I can make a sub or linked database that has each customers visit and item repaired, attached to their main 'name card'.
Go easy on the DB jargon, as mentioned I'm new to all this!!
You'll have another few items to deal with in a bit.
The list of items will become inventory or line items.
The date will become date in, date promised, date delivered, and date paid
(2 name a few)
So what you will need to do is understand just a little bit, not too much, about relational database structure and how you use that in FMP.
1. You'll need to know what a 'one to many' and a 'many to many' relationship looks like
2. You'll need to structure the data so you can work on the tables (files) individually, occassionaly.
There are several good examples that come with fmp for a 'line item' .
Then just be sure to break the data according to the relationships.
What I mean by that is, for example, the customer can be many different people from the same company, or many different companies. It's also critical the 'customer' info is UNIQUE. Many times a 'key' field is created from the customer name and the time created. This works fine in a non-networked solution.
So you'll have to decide on your needs for a seperate 'company with address' and add a person to the company or just a 'person with address and company'.
Usually the latter.
So now you have a UNIQUE customer key field. You then create your neccessary 'Order' fields in a SEPERATE file which holds the customer info from the first and then create the third file which holds the unque LINE ITEMS.
Most of my line items are stock inventory or labor charges,
Don't forget the 'taxable' for each line item and % tax for each line customer.