How to search for an organization or for an individual
The key tip when using search (or find) in the SEP application is to use a single word (or part of a word) that is unique to that organization or individual. If you try to enter the full organization name, there may be some abbreviations or spelling discrepancies that keep the organization or individual you want from showing.
When conducting a search, the results will include any entered term or number populated for any organization (in your permissions set) in the following categories: Name, City, Phone, Email, and Reference. To limit these categories, click the down arrow to the right of the Search button and de-select any you want to be excluded from your search. By default, all of the search term categories are selected.
City: There are often many organizations with the same name: St. Mary's Parish, Holy Family Parish, etc. However, there may only be two organizations in LIttletown and only one by the name of St. Mary's Parish. Using the city as the search term may make it much easier to find the organization on the results list.
Organization name (in part): While the term "Holy" may return too many organizations, "Redeemer" may reduce the number of results. Using a less-often used word from the organization's name may be a strategy if you don't know the city in which the organization resides.
Avoid common terms (such as St. or Parish): Another example of using key search terms that will give you better results is to avoid common terms. This will help give results you may not get otherwise. Here are some examples and how they may affect the results:
- Parish or Church: Sometimes, even if the official title has the word Parish, it has been entered as Church or vice versa. Don't enter this term for most comprehensive results.
- Saint: This term is often entered in three possible ways: Saint, St, St. Notice in the image below Saint returns nothing, St. returns three items (in this very small demo database; expect tens of results in a larger database), where Mary's only returns one result.
The same concept is true for finding an individual.
- If you are not sure of an individual's last name but know their maiden name, you may select maiden name as the category in which you want to search. The caveat here is that you must have entered the individual's maiden name. Likewise, if you know that last name but it returns too many results, you may want to remove the checkmark to the left of Maiden Name in the dropdown.
- As you can see from the dropdown list, other categories for narrowing results are a phone number or email address.