I am working for a customer that has organizations as members. The employees are also registered, and a member organization must have a main contact. All official communication is sent to the main contact.

But sometimes a member has a compliance officer, depends on the size. Special mailings about compliance must be sent to the compliance officers if an organization has one. Otherwise, it must be addressed to the main contact. We have not decided yet register the compliance officer. It can be a separate relationship or a group on the contact.

Any tips how to achieve this?

  • 1
    Are you meaning: for each member organisation, if there is a compliance officer, email the compliance officer, otherwise email the main contact ?
    – Aidan
    Aug 29, 2017 at 18:52
  • Well summarized. Aug 29, 2017 at 18:57

3 Answers 3


One way of approaching it is with a handful of smart groups:

Lets assume you create compliance officers as individuals and link them with a 'Compliance officer is/of' relationship

1) Create a smart group of 'Compliance officers of member orgs' by using Advanced Search to search for organisations that have a current membership and setting 'Display Results as' to 'Related contacts' and the relationship as 'Compliance officer of' - this is the first group to add to your mailing.

2) Create a smart group of 'Member Orgs'

3) Create a smart group of 'Member orgs with compliance officers' by searching for members with a 'compliance officer is' relationship

4) Create a smart group for 'Member orgs without compliance officers' using Search > Custom Search > Include/Exclude search and the last two groups you just created

5) Create a smart group of 'Main contacts of member orgs without compliance officers' similar to 1) using 'Member orgs without compliance officers' and Related contacts/Main contact of - This is the second group to add to your mailing.

Use too many layers of smart groups and your server will be gasping for air, but it might work if your numbers are not too large.

  • Smart, this proves the possibility to accomplish this by using merely configuration. So no developer skills are needed. A developer mindset however helps. Aug 30, 2017 at 21:12

A different approach would be to have a 'compliance' email address on the organisation and use rules triggered on relationship changes to update that address to be compliance or main contact as appropriate.

A variant of that is to use a Contact Reference custom field on your org updated by rules on relationships - or just updated manually depending on the workflow.

Several options with different implications ... depends what works for you.

  • At the moment I suppose the need is to mail a list with compliance officers (or their main substitutes), so I think I cannot use the email address Aug 30, 2017 at 21:14

Not sure I fully get the issue. Using different relationships types would seem the obvious answer, but am thinking that isn't what you are asking for.

Key thing is that whoever does the renewal must have a Permissioned Relationship, so if you need to separate the 'default' from the others then you may be able to do it by creating custom groups that differ based on whether the relationship is Permissioned or not

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