Saturday, 11 December 2010

Complete organization history & task status indicators

We added two new features to Insightly this week: the ability to view the complete history for an Organization on one page, and visual status indicators for tasks in the task list.

Viewing the complete history for an Organization on one page

We heard from our customers that they would like to get a complete history of all the activity for an Organization in one place, including the employees and contacts linked to an organization, and the projects and opportunities taking place that are related to an organization. Previously if you wanted to see this information, you would have to click through to each contact, opportunity and project and view the history for each separately.

We thought this would be a wonderful addition to Insightly, so we huddled around the design desk to plot out how it might work. The result of all that hard work was the addition of only a single additional drop down (we're big on keeping it simple) but this one little drop down can save you a lot of clicks.

The new 'History for' drop down under Organizations is highlighted below in red.


By default Insightly will show you the history for just the Organization. The other options for the drop down are to show the history for the Organization and all linked Contacts, all linked Projects, or all linked Opportunities.

This allows you to see on one page and in one place, everything that has happened around an organization. You can quickly scan the history list and catch up on progress if you've been away from the office, or if you're just about to make a phone call to that client. If you need more detail on a specific item, you can click through and drill into the details. (Tip: hold down the CTRL key when you click a history item to open up that item in a separate tab)

When you change the history drop down to show the history for the Organization + linked items, Insightly indicates those rows that are related to linked items with a small link image to the left of the title to delineate them. Insightly also provides information on which links the row is related to below the title, in a similar fashion to history under the dashboard tab.


Task status indicators in the task list

We also added another little time-saving feature to Insightly this week based on a customers suggestion. The task list now includes graphical indicators of each task's status, so you can quickly see at a glance which tasks are currently in progress, waiting on someone else, or have recently been completed. This is another click saver as you would have previously had to click through to the task details to see the current status of each  task.

The status indicators are highlighted below in red to the right of the task check-boxes.

Hopefully these two additions to Insightly save you time and make your day just that little bit more efficient !

Thursday, 2 December 2010

Google Docs integration in Insightly

Today we're introducing Google Docs integration with Insightly. You can now browse and search all your Google Docs, and attach Google Docs to Contacts, Organizations, Projects and Opportunities in Insightly.

We added a new sub-tab called 'Docs' under Contacts, Organizations, Projects and Opportunities and this is where you can add links to your Google Docs (highlighted in red below).


Click the 'Add Google Doc' link (highlighted in red above) to open the panel where you can browse or search your documents. To add a document to the item, just click the check-box next to the name of the item and click the 'Add Docs to Contact' button under the check-boxes (below in red). You can of course search your documents from within the search box at the top of the panel. Insightly will show an indication of starred documents with a yellow star to the right of the check-box, and any documents in the list that are already linked to the current item will have a tick next to their name instead of a check-box. We show a different icon for documents, spreadsheets, presentations, pdf's 's and drawings so you can distinguish them easily, and on the right hand side we also show the date the document was last updated.


Remember that if you're going to link documents that others will want to access,  set the appropriate permissions for those documents within Google Docs itself to achieve this. 

Newly linked documents will show up in the history for the parent contact, organization, project or opportunity, and in the dashboard history list for those whose parent item you have permissions to view.

So that's Google Docs integration in Insightly - simple yet sophisticated. We hope you like it.


Friday, 19 November 2010

Introducing Pipelines and Activity Sets

We're introducing two new features today that really help you get things done faster and more efficiently in Insightly. They're called Pipelines and Activity Sets.

Pipelines

A pipeline is a linear series of steps (stages) that can be defined for both projects and opportunities. If you repeat the same series of steps over and over for different projects, you can define a pipeline for those steps so you can visually track progress and see exactly where you are, what you have already done, and what you still have left to do.

You can also assign tasks to a stage in a pipeline (via Activity Sets detailed below), and when you progress to that stage, the tasks associated with that stage are automatically added to your project or opportunity. When you have completed all the tasks for a stage, you can progress on to the next stage. It's a good way of mapping out a workflow and making sure you don't miss any important steps along the way.

Pipelines might be best illustrated with an example. A pipeline for creating a new software feature for Insightly might look something like this:

Step 1: Strategize and think about feature aims, whats required, how it might work
Step 2: Map out rough sketches for what screens might look and iterate
Step 3: Develop HTML screens for feature
Step 4: Write code for new feature
Step 5: Test
Step 6: Launch to Production
Step 7: Update documentation, website, and add blog entry

Now we have each step mapped out, we can input them into Insightly. The pipelines configuration is found under the Settings menu in the top right (gear icon) accessible to Administrators. Our new pipeline is for projects, because we will create a separate project for each new feature we add to Insightly.


Next we can add the steps (stages) to the pipeline that we just defined above. Click on the 'Edit Stages' hyperlink next to the pipeline to add the stages in. After adding in our seven stages, the pipeline looks like the screen below, and you can see Insightly visually draws the pipeline  for you above the stage list.


Now, when we create a new project we will have two extra dropdowns in the creation form which enable us to choose a pipeline and a starting stage to use for the project. We're going to create a new project for the awesome new 'Activity Sets' feature we're building, so we choose our new pipeline for this project.
Finally, when we view the Project details, Insightly visually depicts the pipeline and highlights the current stage in blue, so we can easily see exactly where we are up to in the workflow, what stage is coming next, and how far we have to go. Advancing to the next stage in the pipeline is as easy as clicking on the 'Change Stage' hyperlink to the right of the pipeline.


Activity Sets

Activity Sets are like a template for a series of tasks (activities). If you find that you repeat the same set of tasks over and over for different actions - like 'qualifying a lead', or 'developing an opportunity', you can create an activity set to save you the time of having to create each task individually every time you start the process. Activity Sets can be applied to contacts, organisations, opportunities and projects, and they can also be associated with stages in a pipeline.

Administrators can setup Activity Sets under the Settings menu (gear icon in top right). The first step is to specify a name for the activity set, and to choose what it applies to (contacts, organisations, opportunities or projects). 

We will use the process of hiring a new staff member to illustrate how activity sets work. First we create the activity set and give it a name, in this case we're calling it 'Staff hire', and it's for projects as we will create a new project for recruiting a staff member.


Next we add the activities involved in hiring a new staff member. Insightly allows you to specify the number of days after the activity set is applied for each task to fall due. Insightly also allows you to skip days like Saturday or Sunday so tasks don't fall due on weekends or when part time staff are not working. 

So our task list might look like the following:

Task 1: Review resumes (due after 2 days)
Task 2: Create short list of favored applicants (due after 3 days)
Task 3: Phone interviews of short list (due after 4 days)
Task 4: In-person interviews with potentials (due after 6 days)
Task5: Send out offer letter to successful applicant (due after 7 days)
Task 6: Confirm acceptance and schedule orientation (due after 14 days)

To add the individual tasks to the set, click on the 'Edit Activities' hyperlink to the right of the Activity Set details. After adding the tasks, the set looks like the illustration below:


When we create our project to recruit a new staff member, we can apply our new activity set to automatically add in the tasks. You can apply an activity set to a contact, organisation, opportunity, or project by accessing the Actions menu. We click 'Add Activity Set to Project' for this one.

The last step is to choose our new Activity Set from the list, and click the 'Add Activity Set to Project' button to add the tasks. We can see the breakdown of tasks to be created, when they are due, and who's responsible, after choosing our activity set from the drop down list.

Activity Sets associated with Pipeline Stages

Activity Sets can also be associated with pipeline stages. When a stage commences, the activity set is applied to the project or opportunity and all the tasks for that stage in the activity set are created. You can associate an Activity Set with a pipeline stage by choosing it from the dropdown when editing or adding pipeline stages, as shown below.


When tasks associated with a pipeline stage are added to a project or opportunity, they show a blue 'S' and the number of the stage in the pipeline in the task list as illustrated below.


Pipelines and activity sets are a great way to capture and save repetitive workflows, and to visually see at a glance where in a workflow you sit and what actions need to be performed next. They can be a great time saver and a powerful way to automate repeat actions in your business.

Tuesday, 9 November 2010

Introducing the Insightly Gmail Gadget

Introduction

We just put the approval stamp on the shiny new Gmail gadget so it's now all official and out of beta, and we're proud as punch of how it turned out. When we initially designed and conceived Insightly, one of the things we modeled our process workflows around was email. An awful lot of important business communication these days is done via email, and recording and actioning email messages in an efficient and productive way is a big part of Insightly.

With the introduction of our Gmail gadget we can finally bring the productivity advantages of Insightly much closer to the source, right within Gmail itself. We are big fans of Merlin Mann's 'Inbox Zero' email management system and we kept the principals behind that in mind when developing the gadget - we wanted to make Gmail emails more actionable.

We had two overriding design criteria in the development of the gadget: make it simple to use, and make it fast. I think we achieved both.

Right from within an email message in Gmail you can create a new task, create an opportunity, or create an associated project. Insightly will also cleverly link up the email sender to the task, opportunity or project if they are already in Insightly.

The gadget can also retrieve and present all the information Insightly has on the sender of the email. You can see at a glance the recent history for the contact or organisation, and the date and time of the last actions you had with that person. It also displays the contact details, photo, and background information, all very conveniently shown right beneath the email itself. It also conveniently links to the contact or organisation's information page within Insightly so you can quickly pull up Insightly at exactly the right page.

Setting Google Apps Domain Permissions

In order to allow users within your Google Apps domain to use the gadget, the domain administrator has to set permissions for Insightly within the Google Apps domain administration. Click on Insightly in the list of applications for your domain, then click on 'Grant data access' to enable the new gadget features for users in your domain.

Once you set the permissions, the gadget make take up to 20 minutes to appear at the bottom of each users email, as it takes time for Google's Gmail servers to propagate the settings. Also we've found users may need to log out of Gmail and then log back in for the gadget to appear.





Adding Tasks, Opportunities and Projects

You can add tasks, opportunities or projects associated with the email by clicking on the appropriate button. Insightly will automatically fill out some of the details in the form from information contained within the email to make things a bit quicker.



Viewing Sender Info

To see what information Insightly has on the sender, just click the Sender Info hyperlink next to the buttons, and the gadget will retrieve all the latest information for the contact or organisation associated with the sender's email address.


We spent a lot of time designing and building our Gmail gadget with the hope of making our users a lot more productive in their day to day work, so we hope you like it as much as we do !

Sunday, 10 October 2010

Notes with multiple links, and new list ordering options

We're working hard on a Gmail contextual gadget for Insightly for the next few weeks, but we managed to sneak in a couple of new features this week.

Notes with multiple links

The first one is around links in Notes. Previously, a note was tied to one particular item, such as a contact, organisation, opportunity or project. This week we added the ability to link a note to multiple items, so you can write a note and link it to two contacts, a project, and an organisation. The note will show up in the history and notes list for all the linked items. The dashboard now also displays all the links associated with a note too.

Entering in a new note is the same as always, but now if you click on a note to view it, there is a links sidebar present on the right hand side that you can use to link the note to any other items it's applicable to, in the same fashion as linking other items in Insightly.



New Ordering options on Opportunities and Projects


We also added new order options to the Opportunities and Projects list, so now you can filter by the date created, the forecast close date, or the responsible user for Opportunities - and by the date created or responsible user for Projects. The order options apply to searches too.




Wednesday, 6 October 2010

Dropbox internal upgrade and BCC messages

Update 14-Oct-2010: We just added a further check to our system so if you sent the email from your Google Apps domain email address we will now correctly identify the message and user of BCC'ed messages.

On the 5th of October we upgraded our dropbox software that handles incoming emails to a new system. The change will allow us to better handle peak loads and the increase in emails sent as more customers sign up.

The new software is slightly different to the old system, but the only change visible to customers is when some email servers send email to Insightly via a blind carbon copy  or BCC.

Insightly looks through the header information in the email to match the message to a users special dropbox email address when the message comes in, but some email servers do not add the addressee to the headers for BCC messages. In this case, the Insightly dropbox cannot identify which user the email is for and discards the email.

Google's Gmail servers add the header on BCC messages, and by far the majority of our users use Gmail. If you use Gmail for email no change is needed and your dropbox will continue to work great. 

Yahoo email servers on the other hand do not append the addressee to the email headers on BCC messages, so if you use Yahoo email you will need to send emails to your dropbox by CC or by a Forward.

If you use another type of email server software it's best to test it yourself. Send out an email with your dropbox address in the BCC field and check Insightly twenty seconds later to see if that email appears in the email tab in Insightly. If it does: great - but if it does not, you may have to send future emails to Insightly with your dropbox email address in the CC field, or just forward messages to your dropbox as they come in.

Also, as always - if you use Gmail's auto-forward feature to forward every single email you get to your Insightly drop box we will not import them.

Tuesday, 28 September 2010

Dramatically faster Insightly for large data sets

We made a change to the way Insightly works under the hood today, that should see page load times dramatically decrease for those Insightly installations with a large number of contacts and organisations. We measured page load times decrease by up to 62% on those installations with greater than 1000 contacts.

We restructured the way we were pushing link data to the client and reduced the payload sent to the browser by moving some of the data to asynchronous ajax queries, resulting in smaller pages that compress more efficiently.

We hope you like the change !

Monday, 27 September 2010

Better user management features

We just added an update to Insightly to allow you to better manage users details, and to be able to track user activities within Insightly.

Previously, Insightly kept a contact record for each user which we use to track and associate emails within the system, and for internal linking - but we did not expose that contact record within the contacts tab, and it remained hidden. You could get to it from within the links sidebar on an email and by searching but it was not easily available or obvious.

Insightly now exposes those user records under the contacts tab, and provides a small user icon next to the contact name so you can differentiate them from regular contacts. We also link to the contact record from within the User Administration page so you can now easily change user details and contact information.

Actions you can take on a user are limited, so you can't merge a user into another contact or delete a user for instance. We show a red bar at the top of the user details page to indicate that you're viewing a user record rather than a plain contact record too.

We also changed the information that is displayed on the sub-tabs for users too. They now display the history of user interactions within Insightly, rather than records related to the contact. So for instance, the history for a user displays all the items the user has added to Insightly - like tasks, contacts, emails files etc - rather than what we display for contacts which is to show what emails and files are related (linked) to that contact.



We also quietly added an option to be able to choose the default currency (used in opportunities) under 'My Info' > Regional Settings (top right corner).

Thursday, 23 September 2010

Bypassing the Insightly login screen

If you wish to bypass the Insightly login screen you can use the URL below. What you will need to change is the "yourdomain.com" bit at the end to whatever your Google Apps domain is (which is what you type into the login screen).

http://googleapps.insight.ly/User/Authenticate?domain=yourdomain.com

You can then bookmark that URL so you can login to Insightly in just one click without having to type in your domain ever again ! 

Saturday, 18 September 2010

Dropbox intermittent issues all fixed.

We've now rectified all issues with the dropbox email system.

The problem we were having was a massive influx of spam email messages from spam servers (1000 messages  every five seconds) that thought the Insightly Dropbox SMTP server was an open relay server. This overloaded our load balancer and SMTP server intermittently which caused it to go down periodically and it took about 3 minutes to recover and come back up.

We've since put safeguards and protection measures in place to block spam messages of this type so this occurrence will not happen again. Thanks for your understanding and patience in waiting for us to rectify this problem.

Sunday, 12 September 2010

New Insightly version debuts with enhanced task system

Over the weekend we launched a new version of Insightly with a greatly enhanced task system, and many other improvements.

Linking is one of the pillars of Insightly, and being able to link relevant items to each other provides better context and captures relationships. Tasks in Insightly now have the ability to link to multiple contacts, organisation, projects or opportunities in the same way as other items within the system, using the links sidebar on the right hand side of the screen.

The previous tasks system in Insightly was great for quick to-do like items, but fell short of being able to define and describe complex tasks. We've added a big text area for defining longer task descriptions, and the ability to comment on tasks and add file attachments too.

We've also added a priority for tasks and the ability to set a task reminder when you want it, and the option of quickly adding further tasks after creating one for rapid fire task entry. If you want to set a reminder at a specific time for all new tasks, we have a setting for that under My Info > User Settings > Task and Calendar Settings.

We have also upgraded the task list with better filtering so you can now see a list of publicly visible tasks for any employee in your organisation, and we built in an associated link list (with popups for related item details) for each task right under the task title. We also included search in tasks so you can find items more efficiently in a long list.

We also upgraded the dashboard with better filtering, the associated link preview technology that we included in the task list, and the ability to search history items.

The new enhanced task system will provide a great foundation for two future features we have planned around workflow planning and automation for projects and opportunities.

One other feature we added was better integration with Gmail. When you click on an email address in Insightly we now take you directly to your Google Apps Gmail to send a new email with the To address filled out, and your Insightly dropbox email address filled out in the BCC field. If you prefer to use Microsoft Outlook, Mozilla Thunderbird, or another email client, you can change these settings under My Info > User Settings > Email Address Links.

We hope you like the new features !

Thursday, 9 September 2010

Insightly downtime tomorrow - 10 Sep 2010 for major upgrade !

Insightly will be down for two hours tomorrow (Saturday) at 11am Western Australian Standard Time (see the time in your local time zone here).

We're adding a completely new task system, and have many improvements which we will detail in a blog post after the upgrade has been completed tomorrow.

Monday, 16 August 2010

Improvements to your email dropbox

This week we've made some improvements to the dropbox feature that allows you to send emails to Insightly.

We've redesigned the system to speed it up and get your emails into Insightly faster. Under the old system, it could take a few minutes for an email you sent to appear under the email tab in Insightly, but the new system should be able to do it in under 30 seconds for emails without large file attachments.

We also made improvements to the algorithm that detects the actual sender on blind carbon copied emails. And  we also removed all the problems with emails being detected as spam by upstream email servers. These changes have resulted in a dropbox service that is faster, more reliable, and scales better to support increased workloads in the future.

Your new dropbox has a slightly different email address to the old system, so it's now yourdropbox@dropbox.insight.ly instead of the old address of yourdropbox@insight.ly (we added a '.dropbox' in the middle). You can see your new dropbox address in full in the grey section at the bottom of the page under the emails tab.

The new system is up and running now, and we'll keep the old system working for a week before turning it off, but you should change any references or address book entries to your new dropbox address now.

Sunday, 8 August 2010

Export your contact list to Google

One of the most requested features in Insightly is to be able to export your Insightly contact list back into your personal Google Apps contact list (accessible via Gmail). Today we've added just that functionality, and you can conveniently export all your contacts to Google in just a couple of clicks.

The new feature is under the Export menu on the right when viewing your contact list. When you export your contacts, Insightly will add those contacts not currently in your Google contact list, and for those that are already there we will check to make sure any additional phone numbers, email addresses, websites and postal addresses are copied over. It may take a minute to complete, so Insightly will send you an email once it's all finished.

So now it's much much easier to keep your Gmail contact list in sync with your Insightly contact list.

1. From the contacts list choose "Export Contacts" in the right hand sidebar.


2. From the Contact Exports page choose "Export Contacts to Google".

Sunday, 1 August 2010

Two small changes to Insightly this week

In this weeks update to Insightly we added a couple of things:
  • Formatting is now preserved when adding and editing descriptions for contacts, organisations, projects and opportunities. Links are now turned into clickable hyperlinks in text fields too.
  • We added a new user setting to allow for contacts ordered and displayed by first name then last name, or last name then first name.

Thursday, 1 July 2010

Dates on Emails

We changed the way we record the date an email was received in Insightly today. Previously we tried to determine what date the email was actually sent or received by the Insightly user in their own email inbox, rather than the date and time that it was forwarded, CC'ed or BCC'ed to Insightly.

That proved difficult to do, and sometimes Insightly miss-interpreted the date and what was saved was incorrect by up to about 11 hours due to timezones.

Today we switched to just recording the date and time that Insightly actually received the email in the Insightly email system. We can accurately record this, and all pages within Insightly now show that date and time. Unfortunately we cannot retroactively correct previous emails to show the correct time, so they may or may not be correct and may be out by a few hours, but rest assured all future emails will have the date that Insightly received the email shown.

Sunday, 27 June 2010

Navigating and finding things faster

In this week's update we've concentrated on navigating and finding the information you need in Insightly faster, no matter how many items you have stored.

Some Insightly clients have over 20,000 contacts in their database, so finding the one you're looking for can be like trying to find a needle in a haystack. The old Insightly list header bar (below) was functional, but far from perfect. When you clicked on the Contacts tab, we displayed every contact you had permission to view, which could be a very long list for some users, slowing down the responsiveness of the browser. Also the 'Select All' and 'None'  hyperlinks were on the far right, and not directly above the checkboxes they were associated with.


Our new list header bar is less cluttered, more functional, and more easily understood.



The biggest change is to search. Insightly now performs a super fast search in memory on the server, and returns the results back to you as soon as you start typing. And the focus is now automatically in the search box when you click on a tab - which means to find a contact you can just click 'Contacts' and then start typing in the name. Insightly will filter the list in real time while you're typing. This dramatically speeds up finding the information you need.

We also implemented paging for lists, so Insightly only loads the first 50 items in a list, and you can click the next and previous buttons at the bottom to navigate between pages, just like Google search. This decreases the page size and increases overall speed.

We reduced the 'Select All' and 'None' hyperlinks to a checkbox too, and moved it to directly above the list item checkboxes it's associated with, so it's intended purpose is clearer.

We also now support searching within the view you've got currently selected too. So for example on the contacts screen, if you change from the default view of 'All Contacts' to 'Contacts added in the last 30 Days' - and then start typing in the search field - we only search contacts added in the last 30 days.

Finally, we also included an alphabet filter for good measure, so clicking on a letter will filter all the items in the list down to just those starting with the letter you clicked. If you need every item to be displayed on the one page, just click the "All' link in the alphabet list.

If you're an administrator, under the Insightly Settings page we've included a user administration section that allows you to promote other users to administrators, which was an often requested feature. 

We've also been in contact with the Google Apps team this week, and they've informed us that installing apps for only a subset of users is one of their top priorities. This will mean that you will soon be able to "install" Insightly for only those users of your domain that need project management and CRM, and not automatically for every user in the domain - if you so choose.

Coming up in the development schedule we've got syncing your Insightly contacts with Google's contact list, and a redesign of the Insightly task system.

Thanks for using Insightly !

Sunday, 20 June 2010

Tags in Exports and Imports, and new tagging options

Tags are now exported along with the subject data for Opportunities, Projects, Contacts and Organisations.

You can now import tags for Contacts too. When importing from a CSV, from Outlook, or from Act! - there are new options in the field mapping drop down for Contact Tags 1 to 9. Match these up with your tags for each contact and they will be imported into Insightly. If the tag does not exist it will be created for you automatically.

See below for the field picker with the new tag options.



You can now rename  delete a tag from inside the list screen for Contacts, Organisations, Projects and Opportunities too. Just click a tag on the left hand side pane, then choose either the 'Rename Tag' hyperlink, or the' Delete Tag' hyperlink.

See below for a screenshot.


Finally, we added an option to remove a tag from selected items in a list. If one tag is selected, checking the check box next to items in the list will bring up the blue selected items box. The new option in that box allows for removing the selected tag from the checked items. See below for a screenshot.

Friday, 18 June 2010

Insightly introduces themes

In this weeks update we introduced a new feature around customizing the look of Insightly, called themes. You can choose from one of the twelve themes we've created, or you can make your own. We allow the background picture and color to be changed, which can make a big difference to how the product looks.

Configuration options are under the "My Info" section in the top right of the page.

Check out some of our favorites below.

Tuesday, 1 June 2010

Tasks get their own tab, and Google Calendar integration !

In removing the 'Tags' tab last week, we've made room to give Insightly tasks a tab all of their own. We're going to make some improvements to the task interface in the coming weeks, but this was the first step.

We also added the ability to subscribe to your Insightly Tasks from within Google Calendar, by exposing your task list as an iCalendar feed. Google makes it easy to subscribe to iCalendar feeds, and it refreshes the data every few hours. Other software such as Apple iCal, Microsoft Outlook, and Mozilla Calendar also support subscriptions from an iCalendar feed.

You can find instructions on how to add your Insightly Tasks to Google Calendar from within Insightly at  http://googleapps.insight.ly/Tasks/iCal

Google Calendar has very good notification options for task items, as you can receive notification by email message, popup window, or even by SMS message on your mobile phone. We're looking to turn off Insightly's own email reminder notifications for tasks in the coming weeks so as not to double up with Google's more flexible notification service.

A screenshot of what it all looks like is below:

Sunday, 23 May 2010

Better control over tagged items.

We've just updated Insightly to enable better control over tagged items. You can now filter the list of items by a tag using the new tag sidebar. Select multiple items to tag by clicking the "Select Multiple" hyperlink after clicking  a tag. Insightly now allows export of tagged items by clicking on the "Export" link in the sidebar too.

Wednesday, 5 May 2010

New as-you-type search in Insightly

We just launched a new as-you-type search box for Organisations, Projects, Opportunities and Contacts in Insightly. As soon as you start typing, Insightly now pairs down the list to items to just those matching your search query, instantly, through the power of JavaScript. Try it out today.

Tuesday, 4 May 2010

Issues logging in

We looked into issues some users had logging into Insightly for a one and a half hour period earlier today. We have determined that it was a malfunction with the database engine we use to power Insightly, which occurs only under specific circumstances. We have prevented the problem from occurring again in future by changing code in our software to avoid this scenario from presenting itself. We apologise to any affected users for the inconvenience.

Friday, 30 April 2010

Insightly now supports all languages

Insightly now supports storing and displaying data in any language, including Russian, Hebrew, Thai, Japanese, and Chinese. Previously it could only store information in languages that used the roman character set, but Insightly now supports all character sets for names, addresses, emails, notes and any text field.

Wednesday, 28 April 2010

Create a Task from an Email

We just added the ability to create a task from an Email, when viewing the email. When you create the task, it will automatically be associated with the email.

Tuesday, 27 April 2010

Filtering of Email List & bulk actions on Contacts

We just added the the ability to filter the email list under the "Emails" tab. You can now see your own emails by default, or emails shared by others by changing the filter drop down.

We also added bulk actions to the contacts list. Contacts in the list under the "Contacts" tab now have a checkbox next to them. Checking the box will highlight the contact, and you can:
  1. Add a tag to selected contacts
  2. Delete selected contacts
  3. or change the permissions of selected contacts

Insightly scheduled downtime Sat 1st May 2010

Insightly will be down for scheduled maintenance for 4 hours on Saturday 1st of May from 10:00am to 2:00pm WST, to add support for non-latin languages like Russian, Chinese, Korean and Japanese.

Friday, 9 April 2010

Filtering in Opportunities List and Projects List

We just added filtering to both the Opportunities List and the Projects list.

You can now filter the Opportunities list for open, closed or all opportunities. The status of each opportunity is now clearly displayed and colour coded too.

We extended the love to the projects list too. Colour coding of each project's state is shown, and the Projects list can be filtered too. We display open projects by default.

Tuesday, 2 March 2010

Insightly concept guide

We've just finished writing a concept guide for Insightly. It goes through the different data types that can be stored in Insightly, and some of the use case scenarios. It also has a helpful 'Getting Started' section that details how to import data into Insightly, and how to customise it to your needs.

You can get a PDF copy at http://insight.ly/InsightlyForGoogleAppsConceptGuide.pdf

Sunday, 21 February 2010

Importing Contacts

We added a new feature to Insightly today, a contacts file importer. It imports CSV or comma separated value text files which almost all contact manager applications allow export to, and which Microsoft Excel also understands.

You can start by clicking the "Import Contacts" hyperlink in the header of the Contacts tab.


It's a very easy twostep process of uploading the CSV file, then mapping your files fields to the contact and organisation fields within Insightly. We try to match most of the fields for you automatically from looking at the headers, but those we cannot find a match for will be highlighted in yellow.


After matching all the appropriate fields, we will import all the contacts and organisations and send you an email when it's finished. It could take a few minutes if you have hundreds of contacts to import.

If you are not happy with the final results (maybe the fields were not mapped correctly), you can easily roll back the import and attempt it again.

We will be progressively adding some comprehensive documentation around the whole system over the next couple of weeks to make a few of these features a lot more clear.

Monday, 15 February 2010

App Tabs in Firefox

Insightly runs great in the leading browsers, and we test on Firefox, Chrome, IE and Safari.

If you use Mozilla Firefox as your primary browser, a great add-on is available called App Tabs. It allows for small tabs to load on the left hand side of the browser window every time you open Firefox, and it automatically logs you right into Insightly.

This means whenever you need Insightly, it's right there in a little tab on the left hand side. Very convenient.

This feature is slated to be built right in to Firefox 4.0, but you can get it now with the App Tabs add-on at: https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/47734

Sunday, 14 February 2010

So what's Insightly all about ?

I thought it apt that the first post on the Insightly product blog should be a sort of a vision statement about what this software is all about, and where it's heading. A sort of manifesto if you will.

In essence Insightly boils down to bringing business communication, CRM, and project management together into one applications - topped with search across all three. We're trying to un-complicate business software by removing the need to context switch between these applications, while wrapping it all up in a slick web interface that's both fast and simple to use.

And there are big wins and advantages to doing this. Having a full and accurate history of communication between you and your client can prove invaluable down the line. And having file attachments right there next to the contacts, projects, or opportunities they relate to helps with things like making sure everyone knows where to go to get that latest version of the proposal.

Combining email with these other services mean people use the CRM and project management side of the software more too. One of the big problems with CRM and project management software is people just don't use it, while email is almost universally one of the most used application in the workplace daily. Combining them all together means that CRM and project management get used more, almost serendipitously, through all the foot traffic going past for email. It's a simple trick that maximises the use and value of the resources you've paid for.

And wrapping it all together into a cohesive product is great search. It's essential that search is prominent and easy to use when you're dealing with this much information, and it becomes doubly powerful under these circumstances. We implemented search across everything, including every single word in every single email - so you can find that one email you were looking for really fast. Or that one really important file attachment you know that client sent you three months ago.

It's ambitious, and we're not fully done yet - but Rome wasn't built in a day and we're only in beta. We've got the bones of a great experience already, and now we're getting on to building the things you can only get a feel for once you start actually using the application.

Amusingly we've still yet to put the majority of the 'insight' into Insightly - but I wanted to give you a general feel of what enhancements are coming up. A lot of work is going to go into the email experience, and leveraging working with email. We've got a great example in Gmail of what a good email experience should be like, and we need to build into that some leveraging of contacts, opportunities and projects too, as well as expanding what email providers we draw from. We also want to expose some email metrics too, like how many times have you emailed this person, what time of day they respond fastest to emails etc. We can do a lot there, because all that information is embedded in email histories.

This year we will also be expanding the form factors we're designing Insightly for to include the mobile phone, and the touch based tablet. It's important to have all this information in an easily accessible and portable form factor so were working towards that.

Also customisation of Insightly is coming up. In the back end we've built a lot of options to allow for customisations to suit the way you work, but we have not exposed any of those through the interface yet, so that's coming.

If you have any feedback you would like to give, please don't hesitate to drop us a line. This is a process that requires input from customers to make it work, so the more you give the better the product will be.

Thanks.