Modified on Wed, 06 Sep 2023 at 10:38 PM

What is an Action_ID?

The Action_ID field is a system-generated, unique, identifying number. It is designed as an internal identifier for matters. This field may not always be sequential, but will always be unique. Many Actionstep users use this field as a “Matter ID.” or reference number. This was not the original purpose of this field, but the automatic generation of the ID makes it an attractive field for this purpose. 

Why is it not always sequential?

Our recent database upgrade allows for better performance by caching the Action_ID field values in advance to ensure they are available instantly when needed. However, the database occasionally clears the cache to improve performance. This means that any Action_IDs in the cache at that time are purged. Because the field must contain a unique ID, those IDs purged from the cache cannot be used in the future. This leads to a gap in the sequenced numbers but ensures that all Action_IDs are unique. 

NOTE:  There is no loss of matters themselves, you can continue to use the Action_ID as a reference number however it may not always be sequential.

File reference field

This field can be used as a reference field for identifying your matters. The field does not auto-generate an ID so it is recommended to adopt a naming convention (examples below) to ensure each reference is unique. This is common practice, especially in larger firms that span multiple offices and have many users. You can also add a reference to your matter's name if this is preferable. The file reference can be edited at any time and is also searchable in the search bar.

NOTE:  The file reference field is not required to be unique, so it is best to adopt a naming convention to ensure each reference is unique.

Naming conventions

Naming conventions are a commonly used practice that can be tailored to your needs and ensures that each file reference is unique and also gives information about a matter. The most common method to use is to start with the date the matter is being opened. This can be followed up with the client's name or matter type for example.

Example: 20230809SMITH

Example: 230908DOE-FAM

How will I know how to keep track of how many matters I have created over a certain time period?

The best option is to use the built-in matter list view, which will show all of your matters. If you have changed your default view to a list that you have created, you can create a custom list view or custom report that shows all matters for this purpose. This way you will be able to filter by date period and have a count of how many matters have been created during that period. 

If you require assistance or have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to our support team by submitting a ticket here.

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