I received this message today from a partner and thought I would highlight the folder data source feature below.

“Thank you so much for all your help. It is up and running and working like a charm. That Folder Data Source is such a cool feature built right into Smart Connect…. I’m going to let the rest of my co-workers know about it and our salespeople and I’m going to try and get everyone looking at where we could use this at other clients!”

Folder data sources are a great function inside SmartConnect that makes people’s lives easier. When Building a SmartConnect map there are many sources of data you can choose from (SQL, XML, Excel, CRM, Real time, GP, Change etc) – and one of those is simply to point at a network folder.

What is a folder data source: Defining a Folder as the data source for a map simply says that the system should look into this folder and if it finds new files, then run the map to import these into the maps destination. The map will run based on the defined time schedule within SmartConnect.

Why is that good: Perhaps the best thing is that there is no manual intervention to execute a folder sources map – it happens automatically. Another feature is that SmartConnect does not look for a specific file name, but imports whatever files are placed in this folder. The folder datasource allows for multiple files to be copied to this folder at any given time and it will import each sequentially.

Why use a Folder Datasource:

Client Scenario 1: One customer created a windows folder into which anyone from the accounting team could copy a month end journal that was written in Excel. There were 5 accountants that each prepared month end adjustment journals, so each could copy them into the same location and be sure that they would all end up in GP.

Client Scenario 2: Another customer received bank import files each evening which were always named something different. Rather than manually having to rename files for import – they were simply dropped into the import folder and imported automatically overnight via a folder datasource.

Tricks: It is important to have a consistent file format, even though the file name can change. When you first set up the mapping you will need a master format to enable the fields to be mapped to the destination. This file can be just a the column headings, but will enable you to build the original map.