Placement history import file requirements

When assigning contacts to specific committee seats you may enter any number of records in an import file and set all placements via an import.  As with any import file there are specific requirements for the import file.  For each placement history record you must specify the contact (by their Contact ID), the committee they were assigned to, the seat they were placed on that committee, what the time period for the assignment was, and any notes related to the assignment.  A committee (i.e., Communications) has seats (Chair, Website Manager, General Member) and each seat can have one or more positions (Chair = 1 position, Website Manager = 1, General Member = 10) and you can have different types of seats (leadership, appointed, general) .  Contacts are assigned to a seat on a committee, for a specific time period.  Jane Smith was placed as the Chair (Leadership seat) on the Communications committee from 06/01/2012 through 06/01/2007.**

The following are rules for the import file:

(1) The import file must be in CSV or tab delimited format.  Within Excel, for example, you can click File > Save As and select either of these formats.  For this example we will reference the CSV format.

(2) The file must have six (6) column headings labeled CONTACTID, COMMITTEE, SEAT, START_DATE, END_DATE, and NOTES.  Do not added, delete, or rename column headings.

(3) All history records must have one row for every history record.  For instance, if a contact has been placed into 5 different positions over the last 5 years, the placement history import file would have 5 rows inserted for this one contact .  Please do not add columns to the import file and list all 5 placement in one row.  The system will only import the first history record and ignore the rest. Each row must contain a value in all columns with the exception of the Notes column.  This is the only optional field.  Your import job will return an error if any of the other values are left blank.

(4) The committee seat pairing must match exactly an existing committee seat in the VolunteerMatters database**.  For example, If your system has a committee with the name "Communications" and a seat with the name "Newsletter Chair", the following entries in your import file will cause an error:

Comm, Newsletter Chair
Communications, Newsletter

**This can include spaces before and after the committee or seat name within VolunteerMatters or the Import file itself.

To correct any discrepancies between what you have in your import file and the committee/seat structure you have in your database you would either have to correct the import file or correct the structure in VolunteerMatters or both.  To manage the committee structure within VolunteerMatters you may visit

(8) All dates must be formatted in mm/dd/yyyy format.  This means that January 1st, 2008 would have to be formatted 01/01/2008.  If you entered dates with any other variation, the import verification process will generate an error: 

01/01/2008 - correct!
01/01/08 - incorrect
1/1/08 - incorrect
1/1/2008 - incorrect
01/1/2008 - incorrect
1/01/2008 - incorrect
Jan. 1, 2008 - incorrect
January 1, 2008 - incorrect


**Note: The "End Date" for a placement is midnight of the date entered, meaning it does not include that date.  For example if your end date was 5/31/2012 and you filtered by that placement for Jane Smith on 5/31/2012 she would not be returned as the placement ended at midnight of that date.  If you wish it to include 5/31/2012, the end date should be 06/01/2012.

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