Can I send a welcome email through Composer?

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Composer is a great tool for building aesthetically pleasing emails, and you may want to harness this functionality to send out your welcome emails instead of using the standard system email template. Is this possible? Absolutely! But there are additional considerations you should take into account.

You too can send out beautiful Composer emails as your welcome email to new parents and students! But make sure you take the extra steps required for this process.

Create the Welcome Email With Merge Fields

In your Composer email, use these two fields to provide recipients their username and a login link to set up their account:

  • {vc:username} 
  • {vc:portals_account_setup_link}

Set Up Welcome Email Templates Anyway

The account setup link you include in a Composer email expires after 72 hours. If a user clicks the setup link after 72 hours have passed, the system will automatically send them a system welcome email. Therefore, we strongly recommend setting up welcome emails even if you are using Composer to send welcome emails. To do this:

  1. Navigate to the Identity and Access Management or System homepage and click the "Security Roles" link.
  2. Ensure that the correct welcome email template is listed for each security role that could get a welcome email. For example, if you are getting ready to send Composer welcome emails to your parents, makes sure that the "Parent" portal role has the VC_Welcome_Parent email template indicated in the "Welcome Email Template" field. 
  3. To edit the actual template, navigate to the System homepage and click "System Email Templates."
  4. Find and click into the appropriate template and edit.

Create "Welcome Email Sent" Individual Events

The issue is that sending out a welcome email through Composer won't automatically create a "Welcome Email Received" individual event for the recipients. This can lead to you accidentally sending out multiple welcome emails if you also run the "Send Parent Welcome Emails" in the future because that procedure will send emails to people without the event.

To get around this, you need to create "Welcome Email Received" entity events for Composer welcome email recipients either manually or in batch. 

Creating an Event Manually

You can create the "Welcome Email Received" events on a one-off basis:

  1. Navigate to the relevant person record and click on the Events tab.
  2. Click the Add Record... button.
  3. In the Student Event column, ensure that the value is "SYS: VC Welcome Email Sent".
  4. Fill out the rest of the columns as you see fit and then click Update.

Creating Events in Batch

This process is ideal for when you want to create multiple events at the same time and uses the Veracross Data Importer tool. You can read more about this process by reviewing the Entity Event Import type documentation.

Be sure that, for the entity_event_type_id column, you insert the numeric ID for the "VC Welcome Email Sent" event type. For most schools, this will be "1000", but it is worth checking the value for your school here, just in case.

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