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ZOHO CRM: One-to-Many or Many-to-Many relationship between modules



User Name: jamest85
Name: James Tang
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Google Apps for Work Partner, Certified Zoho CRM Consultant. 7 years experience on Zoho consulting, implementation, and programming using C#, VB, Php..., 15 years of total IT experience including prog... [More]
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Add Date: 03/28/2010
The modules relationships (one-to-many or many-to-many) are quite important to know so when you implement your Zoho CRM application, you won't be lost or put unnecessary fields in some modules, or require some info to be shown in a module which could be unreasonable or impossible.
Here just discuss 3 modules relationships: Accounts/Contacts/Potentials, other modules are pretty much the same concept:

Case 1: Accounts <=> Contacts : One-to-Many
That means one account can have a lot of contacts info listed in account's details section, but one contact can only have one account to be related to, so there is no way (or not necessary) to show the account info in contact's details section

Case 2: Accounts <=> Potentials: One-to-Many
That means one account can have a lot of potentials info listed in account's details section, but one potential can only have one account to be related to, so there is no way (or not necessary) to show the account info in potential's details section

Case 3: Contacts <=> Potentials: Many-to-Many
It is reasonable that one contact can have more than one potentials related to, so in contact's details section we can see list of potentials there.
It is also reasonable that one potential can be related to more than one contacts, so in potential's details section, we can see list of contacts (using: Contact Roles). I am pretty sure that between the table of potentials and contacts there is an extra table helping to build the many-to-many relationship.
Note: the Contact Roles only contains the contacts which belong to same account, also the potential belongs to that account. (That is also reasonable, in fact, very nice feature).

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