About Adventure Works and the sample business database

Sometimes, the best way to learn how to do something is to actually do it.

Business Contact Manager for Outlook includes a sample database to show you what a populated database looks like, and to help you get comfortable with using it.

The sample database contains business data for the fictional Adventure Works Bicycles company. You can use the sample database to practice configuring the workspaces, creating and naming your own forms, finding a record, or whatever you imagine, all without compromising your own business data.

We’ve included these Try It articles so you can try out a few tasks while using the sample business database.

You can choose to start Business Contact Manager for Outlook with the sample database during the Startup Wizard, or you can switch to the sample database after you start using Business Contact Manager for Outlook.

Switch to the sample business database

  1. Click the File tab.

  2. Click the Business Contact Manager tab.

  3. Click Manage Databases, and then click Switch to Sample Business.

  4. Follow the instructions on your screen.

Note: Don't worry, the database that you use for your own business is not affected by your temporary use of the sample business database.

What you can do with the sample business database

You can use the sample business database to try out almost any procedure or customization before applying it to your business database.

Note: You cannot try out the Business Contact Synchronization or Sharing features while using the sample database. You can turn on E-mail Linking and Tracking, but e-mail messages cannot be linked because you are not using an active e-mail account in the sample database.

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About Adventure Works - the fictional company

Adventure Works Bicycles, Inc. is a fictional bicycle wholesaler that sells and manufactures bicycles and sells clothing and cycling accessories to retailers around the country.

The people at the company perform typical business activities such as:

  • Sales

  • Setting sales and other business goals

  • Fulfillment

  • Managing inventory

  • Managing trade shows

  • Managing personnel

  • Budgeting

Adventure Works Bicycles has customized Business Contact Manager for Outlook to suit their business by doing the following:

  • Created Vendor, Store, and Store Employee records.

    Tip: Open the Store Employee record for Jesper Aaberg to see a description of how the Store Employee record type has been customized.

  • Linked Store and Employee records so that Adventure Works can easily access information about the primary contact for each store.

  • Customized the gadgets on the Dashboard, and the Sales, Marketing, and Project Management workspaces to display different data. For example, the Adventure Works Dashboard displays two Sales Pipeline gadgets. One displays data by revenue, the other by the number of opportunities.

  • Customized the workspaces to include the lists of records or tabs that they want to see. For example, the Contact Management workspace includes tabs for Vendors, Stores, and Store Employees in addition to the Accounts and Business Contacts tabs.

  • Created a project template for the Adventure Works trade shows.

  • Created a call list with a script to contact customers about overdue payments.

  • Saved a custom report.

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We’ve created the following exercises for you to try.

Customize a workspace

One of the ways in which Adventure Works customized Business Contact Manager for Outlook was to alter the workspaces so that they display the most useful information for the business.

Add and modify a gadget

A new addition to Business Contact Manager for Outlook is the ability to get up-to-date information about sales, fulfillment, or other events in gadgets. You can add gadgets to each workspace to show the latest information on your business activities.

Track a Lead

When the sales manager of Adventure Works meets a potential customer, he uses Business Contact Manager for Outlook to store information about the customer.

Close a sale

The sales manager of Adventure Works may identify purchases that an existing customer wants to make. This sales opportunity can be tracked in Business Contact Manager for Outlook until the sale has closed – when the customer decides or declines to buy the products or services.

Call your customers

Business Contact Manager for Outlook helps you to create a call list marketing activity to identify which customers you want to call and what you want to say when you call.

Manage your business projects

The promotions manager of Adventure Works often manages trade shows. There are many tasks involved and she uses Business Contact Manager for Outlook to organize and track them.

Create your own forms

Adventure Works created several forms, including Vendor and Store forms, to suit the retail bicycle business. Now, they need to create a Media Outlet form to track the organizations that help them promote their trade shows.

Convert a record

Adventure Works has learned that a company that used to be a Vendor is now a Store so they need to convert the record to a different type.

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