Reply like a Pro: Email Templates

Template Emails & Activities - New Feature

21-Nov 2018 • Product
hugh2
Hugh Cowling PRODUCT & QA

Thanks to this time-saving enhancement to Accelo's create email/activity feature, you can get back to doing the work you love. Sometimes referred to as "canned responses", template activities allow you to quickly insert a pre-crafted message, including smart merge fields, when composing an email or note for your clients & colleagues. By leveraging this feature, you now have more time to focus on the creative, analytical, problem-solving, and consultative work that's core to your business. 

full view2

As your mouse moves over the list of templates, a preview of the subject & body will appear in the activity window!

Not only do templates help train and empower new users with the knowledge they need to handle common sales, service and accounts related inquiries, they also eliminate the need to copy and paste useful answers/replies you might have saved in Gmail, Word documents and elsewhere.

 - Please note: This feature is only available in the Premium version of Accelo.

Getting Started

show panelThe next time you open the Create Activity modal, you'll find a button on the right of the subject row to toggle open the new activity templates panel.

Note: This panel can't be accessed if you're composing an in-line reply - but you can always "pop-out" the reply to continue in the full create activity window and then access the templates!

You'll also see an Uncategorized folder under My Categories - though if your colleagues have already discovered this feature they might have started making some shared categories & templates.

basic viewTo create a new template, click the 3 dot menu in the blue Activity Templates header, then "Add New Template". As you can see, there's also an option to Add New Category (categories are essentially folders) to organize your templates. If you'd like to see a list of all the templates available to you (and configure them further), there's an option to Manage Activity Templates.

add templ

You can also turn an old activity into a template: View the full activity screen then click the 3 dot menu to find a handy new "Create Activity Template" option.

Features of a template

  • add against2Title - use this to briefly describe the template. This is what we use to identify the template in the templates panel, rather than the subject.

  • Category - associate a template with a category to help organize your templates. This also controls whether the template is shared; if you save the template into a shared category, then others can see and use it.
  • Against type - by linking the template to a particular type of work - such a project, ticket or sale - you're letting users know this template is designed especially for use with that kind of work. This also causes the available merge fields to adjust to only show ones compatible with that type of work.
  • Subject - this will be inserted into the subject of the activity you are composing.
  • Body - this will be inserted into the body of the activity you are composing - and will overwrite existing text. And yep, rich-text formatting is supported in the body - just click the A button on the lower toolbar to see the formatting options.
  • Hours & Minutes - for situations where a standard amount of time should be logged on save of the activity, you can template the hours and minutes too!
  • Class & Privacy - as with normal activities, you can also define the activity class and privacy/confidentiality setting if required.
  • Merge fields - let Accelo do the hard work for you by automatically fetching details about the recipient, their company and the work dynamically. To see the available merge fields, just hit the open bracket key  [  and start typing to insert the field you need with ease!

merge inline

Templates in action

The templates sidebar has been designed so you can find and add a template with minimal disruption to your workflow. While your categories & templates are kept separate from the shared ones, if you're not sure where to look, just try to search box at the top - this will match across the template title, subject, owner and category.

When it comes to inserting a template, we've added a few smarts to let you know if there are merge fields which couldn't be converted, as well as the option to undo the insert if you change your mind. You can even re-apply the template (to refresh the merge fields) if you change the work that the activity is going against.

giffy template

A note on permissions:

While all premium tier users will be able to create and edit their own (personal) categories and templates, we've added specific permissions into the Activities area so you can configure whether someone should be able to add, edit and remove shared categories and shared templates.

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We're always looking to improve our product, and already have some additions in mind for these templates - such as tracking template usage and being able to template attachments too. If you have any feedback or questions, you can always reach us via support@accelo.com.

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