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Make any field searchable through basic sidebar search

Knowledge Article Number 000004299

The basic sidebar search is limited and typically only searches objects by the standard name field.  If you'd like to enhance the sidebar search, create External ID fields since the sidebar search can search on External ID fields.


For example, if you have a custom object that uses an auto-number record format, you'll want to allow your users to search on another field so they don't have to search by record number.  Another example could be if you wanted to have all of the Opportunities related to an Account Name show up by a basic search.

A custom field can only be searched on the Advanced Search and Global Search. 

Create a custom text field and set the field as an External ID.  Since this field will only be used for searching purposes, don't add this field to the Page Layout.

Next, create a workflow rule that will update the custom text External ID field with the value that you wish to search for. We recommend that you set the evaluation criteria to "Only when a record is created" and the rule criteria to Created date "not equal to" (null, or left blank as this is the same as null).

Now, every time that a record meets the criteria, the External ID field will be populated and this can be searched on through a standard search.

Small Alert Icon NOTE:  If the object doesn't have a tab it won't be searchable. The tab visibility needs to be either "Default On" or "Default Off," it can't be "Hidden." If you don't want users to readily find this tab, set the visibility to "Default Off" and don't add it to any applications.

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