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Entering Metadata Using Database Lookups

Metadata information can be automatically populated into many metadata fields based on a single metadata “look up” value that comes from a database such as an accounting database or an ERP system.

If the administrator has configured the schema to use database lookups, you will see a Lookup button in the Metadata pane. Clicking this button after entering or selecting the value from the configured database drop down list metadata field retrieves any mapped values from the database into the remaining metadata field values of the schema. This can reduce the amount of time it takes to index a document with metadata.

When the list retrieved from the database is presented to the user in the drop down list, only the first 100 items will be displayed in the FDA and the first 25 items in the Web Client. As the user scrolls through the list or starting typing the value, more values will be loaded into the view but is limited to viewing 100 (FDA) or 25 (Web Client) values at a time.

If there are any blank required fields after the lookup is performed, you will need to enter those manually. The values of any read-only or automatically tagged fields are not affected by the database lookup.

The Lookup button in the metadata pane is shown when adding a single document or when editing the metadata of a single document. You cannot do database lookups for several documents at once from the Inbox; look ups have to be done one document at a time.

Lookup button - entering metadata

When configuring database drop-down lists, up to four “search by” fields can be set to help users choose the correct value from the list. Often the single lookup value is not sufficiently descriptive so selecting the correct value from the list can be difficult due to having similar names, long names or numbering. “Search by” fields help simplify the selection process. Once the “search by” fields are configured, the end user has the ability to click the “search” button in the metadata pane. In the search by window, the user has ability to view the search by information, and filter and sort the data in order to select the correct value from the list. For example, when putting employee information into the system, the lookup is done on the unique employee number field. However, remembering the employee number for each employee is not practical. Using this solution, the user can see the employee’s first and last name, title, department and so on to ensure the correct employee number is selected.

Metadata pane - Search by lookup fields

Up to five lookup fields can be configured for the metadata fields. For example, a customer is classifying construction documents for a property. Construction is related to a lease and can include one or more jobs. The customer would like the document to have the lease id, lease name, job id, and job name metadata information populated. When the lease id and the job id is selected from the drop-down list in the metadata pane and the Lookup button is pressed, then the system retrieves both the lease and job names.

Metadata pane - Multiple lookup fields

Read how to create database drop down list metadata fields or setting the database lookup on a schema.

To enter metadata using database lookups

  1. Do one of the following:
  • Add a single document to the document management system.
  • Select a single document in the Inbox.
  • Edit the metadata of a document in the library.
  1. Select the Document Schema.
  2. Enter or select the value for the database drop down list metadata fields that are configured to do the lookups. There can be up to five database drop-down lists configured in a schema.
  • If you enter a value in the wrong metadata field, you will receive an error message “Missing value for <metadata field name>”.
  1. If the “Search by” feature is configured, click the Search button Search by metadata field icon to display a table with related database information. The table can be sorted and filtered in order to select the correct value from the list. See How to manipulate the Batch Job report View for information on how to manipulate the table view.
  2. Click Lookup. All of the metadata fields that are configured will pull in the values from the database.
  3. Enter values in any other required metadata fields or modify any of the values that were retrieved.
  4. Click Add or Save.