Special Function Table - Usage Notes

The Special Function Table contains records with up to 50 text fields of reference information that can be used to associate just about anything to an issue, such as contact records, parts, contracts, contractors, customers, or rooms. When the Special Function Table is used as a contact record, Issuetrak can even send email notifications to the contact. In this article, we’ll take a look at using the Special Function Table.

Users with the permission “Can Administrate” or with the Sys Admin parameter can navigate to Administration > Special Function Table > Data Values to add, edit, or delete records.


Data Entry Only

When a user wants to add data to the visible fields of the Special Table Record. All then need to do is enter it into the text fields.  The field will hold up to 100 characters each.  Any data entered into those fields save as a part of the issue record and can be searched using the Search issues page.  The information will also be available in the Report Writer Queries and Reports. However only the first 5 defined fields will show on the issue record.  You can define one of those 5 fields as an email address and have Issuetrak forward email based on the email distribution list setting in the Special Function Table setup.  

In this usage no table records are created, no details can be viewed, and not history records are created to view at a later date.


Creating Table Records

In some usages it becomes necessary to produce table records to associate data in the Special Function Table with the Issue Data.

If a user has permission to use the Special Function Table, then they can view existing records or create new records from the Submit page.  They will also be able to view details of existing records and view a history of issues submitted with the Special Function Table record

Use this method when you would like to view pre filled data, such as parts, or contact information.

To use this capability a  user can enter data into the field by the Magnifying Glass to start a search for matching records.  Or they can just lick the Magnifying Glass and enter information into the search form. The first five fields can be used to search for the required record. Users with appropriate permission can use existing records or create new records from this form.

Once entered into the form, links will appear to allow you to view the history of issues submitted using this record and allow the user to view details of the record they selected.


Record Visibility

An important point to note when using the Special Function Table is that any user can see the Special Function Table on the submit screen to select from an existing record or enter data into the first five visible fields. Only users with the permission “Can add, edit and delete Special Function Table records” can create or edit Special Function Records from the submit screen. If the user can also edit the issue, they can take the data entered into the five visible fields by someone else and create a record if necessary.

Another thing to keep in mind is that the data in the Special Function Table is visible to all users with these permissions.  There is no data restrictions to limit the view of data from one team to another.


Special Function Table vs. User Defined Fields

As we’ve discussed, the special function table in Issuetrak is very flexible. You can use as many or as few of the 50 text fields as you need to contain the data that you want to store. It’s important to note that User Defined fields also have some of this flexibility.

For the purposes of this comparison, we’ll assume that you are using the Special Function Table to store Customer Contact information, like First Name, Last Name, and Email Address. The features we’ve listed here are common across many usages of the special function table.


When you select special function table records.

  • Each of the values is part of a record, so John Smith’s email address is part of John Smith’s record. This information is constant across all of the issues that his record is a part of.

  • You can track history against those records, so you can easily see how many issues John Smith has submitted, and the history of those records from the issue view or submit page

  • You can configure the Special Function Table record as a contact record, so you can send email notifications to the customer listed on that record.

  • The First Five fields are displayed on the issue view and Submit page. You’ll have to select a record and click “details” to see the other fields.

  • To add a new contact your team will need to create a new Special Function Table record. This can be done from the submit page with the proper permissions.

  • The information on the Special Function Record is outside of your site’s visibility controls. Anyone who can view the issue can also click on “details” to see the full record.


When you enter text into Special Function Table fields without selecting a record.
  • Each of the values in the fields is a stand-alone value, so the name entered is not related to any of the other information on the issue. This information is not constant across the other issues that list the same customer.

  • Because no record is selected, there’s nothing to track history against. You’ll have to do a search or report to see the other issues that have the same information entered.

  • Since no record is selected, no email is sent.

  • There’s no way to use more than the first five fields unless you select a record.

  • If you can submit an issue, you can add data to the first five fields.

  • Anyone who can view the issue can see the information that’s been entered.


When you use User Defined text fields
  • Each of the values in the fields is a stand-alone value, so the name entered is not related to any of the other information on the issue. This information is not constant across the other issues that could list the same customer.

  • There’s nothing to track history against. You’ll have to do a search or report to see the other issues that have the same information entered.

  • User defined fields do not offer the ability to send email notifications.

  • You can create and add as many user defined fields as you want.

  • If you can submit an issue, you can add data to a non- private user defined field.

  • User Defined Fields can be configured as “Private”. Only users with the proper permission can view edit or enter data into private user defined fields.