Import Items From Microsoft Excel

Import from Microsoft Excel might be very useful feature especially if you formerly used some other contact management system than eWay-CRM or if you purchased a commercial contact database and now you want to move these contacts to CRM and track communication with them. The import from Microsoft Excel can be also used for updates of items that are already in the system. How to start the import depends on the situation. Below are listed 3 different use cases.

Be aware, the user who executes data import from Microsoft Excel should be granted sufficient permissions to create and edit items from the Companies, Contacts, Deals, Projects, Journal and Products modules, otherwise the import or update may be done only partially or not at all. Visit the chapter Set Module Permissions to learn more about permissions.

A - Import Existing Data Sets

In most cases, you will have the data already prepared in an Excel sheet. You may have gotten that file as a commercial database, or it may be an export from your former software as well. Anyway, such data set needs to be customized to be suitable for the import to eWay-CRM.  Mainly, it means to give a name to every single column so that it can be matched with a correspondent field in eWay-CRM. Sometimes, it is also necessary to adjust the data as well, please go through the Source Fle Conventions section to learn more.

  1. Prepare files to comply with Source File Conventions, remember to insert right values in the column Companies in the Contacts file to related company with its contacts.
  2. Consider the risk of duplicates and take the steps to prevent its creation if needed.
  3. Use one of the Import Methods

B - Create New Set of Data to Be Imported

Follow these steps if you don't have any file with data to import. You can use this template to quickly create your data and load them into the system at once.

    1. Save Template for Import - the file will contain the exact subset of columns as the view you are using to display Companies, Contacts, Deals, Projects, Journal, or Products list.

      In case you want to have imported all the columns belonging to the module, please use the All Columns option as shown in the picture below.

  1. Insert data to be imported.
  2. Consider the risk of duplicates and take the steps to prevent its creation if needed.
  3. Use one of the Import Methods.

C - Update Existing Items

You may also use the import items from Excel feature when processing mass changes among data.  For example, when you want to assign all your companies to another user (change its owner), or relate to some category and such. It has proven to be way faster than opening every single item and changing it manually.

  1. Export data to Excel - Go to the module main list you want to import data to. Right-click any blank space, select Export List and then Items to Microsoft Excel. The exported file will contain only items and columns that are currently displayed.

    In case you want to have exported all the columns belonging to the module, please use the All Columns option as shown in the picture below.

    If it is on, you need to turn a data filter off to export all the items that the selected module contains.
  2. Update the values in the Excel file as needed. You need to ensure that existing items will be correctly paired with items in the Excel file for successful update. Items are paired on the basis of these field due to the module:
    Company Matching on the basis of ID or Identification number
    Contact Matching on the basis of Email 1
    Deal Matching on the basis of ID
    Project Matching on the basis of ID or Project name
    Journal Matching on the basis of GUID (unique database entry)
    Products Matching on the basis of Code
    You can also use other fields to pair items - you need to use Unique permission. The table shows only default pairing fields, but when you set a field as Unique, it will be used for pairing too. For more information, go to Set Unique Permission.
  3. Use one of the Import Methods to commit the changes.

Import Methods

Important: Before the import, be sure you save changes in Excel file and you close this file. When the file remains open, it is possible that data import will not be correctly done.

If your file complies with Source File Conventions, it is possible to import your data to eWay-CRM. There are several ways to initiate the import.

Simply, you may drag and drop the Excel file to the appropriate list.

Or there is an option Import From Excel in context menu of modules main list.

And finally, when you display one of supported modules, the import features will be enabled in the Outlook ribbon or within the eWay-CRM menu in Microsoft Outlook 2003 or higher.


Source File Conventions, Additional Settings

Column Names

Column name is always the first row in the file. Names of the columns in your Excel file are dependent on eWay-CRM language settings. If you use the English localization of the system, it is necessary to have column names in the file in English as well. Analogically it  also works for other languages. If there is any column name that doesn't match with any of the fields in the module, the import won't be processed and a dialog pops up.

Check Box Values

If the part of the imported XLS file is check box column, it is possible to have there only these values: 0 or 1, respectively FALSE or TRUE.

Drop Down Menu Values

The system also cannot import items that contain values which are not listed in the existing drop down menus. For example, if the Priority field in the Contact window offers values Low, Normal and High and the column Importance in the source file contains anything but one of these above mentioned, contact will be skipped. Every such occurrence will be listed after the import.

Import Companies and Contacts Linked Together

To gain the most from the import, execute the import of companies first and contacts afterwards. If you have filled "Company" or "Companies" column in the Contacts file, the imported contacts will be automatically related to those companies. As you can see in the picture below, it is possible to fill either the name of the company, or its ID, or both in the form "Company Name [ID]". All these 3 entries are equal. In the case, you want to relate a contact to several companies, use comma to separate the company info (as shown in the row 6).

Availability: For the "Company" column, the function is available since eWay-CRM 5.4.4.

Categorize Imported Items

"Categories"  is the only exception where you are not tied down by what values eWay-CRM offers. You are enabled to fill in whatever value you want, and a category with such name will be created while importing, of course only if it doesn't already exist. Use commas to separate the entries in order to relate an item with several categories.

Duplicates in the Source File

It is possible that there are duplicates in your files. As long as golden item is the heart of a CRM system, to prevent duplicates we recommend to have Check for Duplicate Companies settings and Check for Duplicate Contacts activated, both settings are to be found in Global Settings section in Administration Settings.

Import Statuses (During the Import of Deals and Projects)

Workflow statuses are very specific values that can be linked with actions. So, you will be asked—in the case that the imported Microsoft Excel file is containing a Status column—whether you want to import also this column and validate actions. If you click Yes, the statuses import will be proceeded and actions will be validated. If you click No, statuses won't be imported—you can use this in the case that you make large changes in the existing list and you don't want to change statuses by mistake.