Articles on: People

Import your contact data

The ability to store all of your church’s contacts securely in one place has many advantages. Firstly, it allows the entire team to access important information from their computer, tablet and phone. Secondly, ChurchDesk People allows you to collect consent from your contacts, enabling you to keep reaching out to people in and around your church.

If you want to import your contacts you have two options:

Use a csv or excel file to easily import your contacts by yourself.
Forward your csv or excel file to ChurchDesk and let us import for you (Will take a couple of days).

Before you begin

To ensure a successful import, please follow this list before getting started:

All columns in your file should contain a header (i.e. first name, last name, email, etc.).
None of your contacts share the same email or mobile number (In ChurchDesk, emails and mobile numbers are unique to a contact).
Address information is separated into individual columns (street+number, postal code, and city).
You’ve created all the contact fields you in ChurchDesk prior to beginning your import (read how to create your custom fields).
Data being transferred to contact- and custom fields comply with the standards listed below.

Standardised formats and options for certain contact- and custom fields:

Prefix: "Mr. || Mrs. || Miss || Ms. || Dr. || Other"
Civil status: single || relationship || married || partnership || divorced || widowed
Allergies and intolerances: nuts || eggs || dairy || fish || shellfish || gluten || soy
Diet: vegan || vegetarian || pescetarian
Tags: tag 1, tag 2, tag 3 (insert list separated by commas)
Checkbox: yes / no || y / n || x / (empty)
Multiple choice: XXXX, YYYY, ZZZZ (insert selected options separated by commas)
Dropdown: option - A

NB: The options for your multiple choices and dropdown in your file needs to match 100% with the options of the fields in ChurchDesk. If a letter is capitalised in ChurchDesk, it needs to be capitalised in your file as well.

Import your contacts

To get started, navigate to ChurchDesk People and click the “Import” button.

Logged in already? Then simply click the link and the system will take you to the import: Import contacts

1. Select your file

Drag your file into the drop area or click in the box to select a file from your computer. 

Important: Please make sure that your file is formatted following the standard formats listed above.

2. Update existing contacts

Now consider how your import should affect existing contacts.

During the import, we’ll try to identify existing contacts using their email and mobile number. In a scenario where you’ve received new information and wish to mass-update your contacts, all you have to do is use their email or mobile phone as the identifier and the system will update them. 

Contact is identified via email or mobile number

If either the email or mobile number is registered you can choose one of the following options:

Only update empty fields: Data from your file will only be added to empty contact fields.
Overwrite existing contact data: Contact data from your file will replace existing contact data.

Contact wasn’t identified

If neither the email or mobile number of the contact is registered in ChurchDesk People, a new contact will be created.

3. Set up columns

The final step is to match columns from your file with fields in ChurchDesk. We’ll automatically suggest matches based on column name. However, we recommend that you check that everything is matched correctly as well as match the columns that we weren’t able to recognise.

Skip columns

In case you’ve included columns which you didn’t want to be imported, you can simply skip these by clicking skip, or selecting “Do not import” in the dropdown.

To finalise this, you need to match or skip all columns. Now, you simply click “Import”, and we’ll send you an email as soon as all your contacts have been imported.

All contacts receive a tag

During the import, we’ll tag all your contacts to make it easy for you to search for them in ChurchDesk People.

Errors occurred during import

Due to various reasons, errors can occur during the import. If this happens we’ll inform you in the email you receive after the import is done.

To see the errors and why they occurred, simply click the “View errors” button. All contacts causing an error will not be imported.

How to easily fix the errors

Fixing the errors have been made very easy in ChurchDesk. We’ve created a file containing all the contacts that caused an error. All you have to do is download the file, correct the errors and try to import again.

Import history

You can always access your import history in case you need to look back. The history shows you how many contacts were imported and if any errors occurred.

TIP: Click the tag to quickly see a list of all imported contacts.

Updated on: 03/05/2023

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