Import/update values for custom fields in VolunteerMatters

If you would like to make a bulk update to the value of any existing custom fields, follow the below steps. You would follow the same steps if you have just created a new custom field and would like to import default values for that field . A Custom field must already be created and active for these instructions to work.   

**Please note: if you include a row for a custom field that is blank for a contact in your import, the Custom Field import will remove any existing data. 

(1) Run the Contact Listing Report by logging into your VolunteerMatters Administrative system and navigating to Admin > Reports and clicking run on that report. Make sure to click 'Edit' on Report Fields link and check the boxes for all Custom Fields prior to running the report.   You can also export an new or existing List View with the appropriate custom fields and Contact ID selected as columns.

(2) Download the resulting CSV file, and update the values in the column that corresponds with the custom field you would like to update. The column names match the Unique ID of the custom field.  When updating the values for those fields that allow multiple selections you would enter in the values for each record separated by the "pipe" key: "|".   If you import custom field choices without the pipe and separate them out into different rows it will overwrite the first import choice with the second.

So a correct example would be: Finance|Computer Knowledge|Law

(3) Perform a custom field import by going to Setup > Import, click New Import, select the Import Type "Custom Field Import", click Browse to select your modified field and click Save.

(4) Under field mapping maker certain that only the MEMBERSHIPID and the custom fields you want to update are mapped. All others should be changed to "Not Available". Otherwise the values for all other custom fields will be changed back to what they were at the time you performed the export, potentially losing any administrative changes in the interim.

(5) Click Save and Return

(6) Click Verify to the right of the Custom Field Import job. The only errors, if any, that might appear would be for missing contact IDs. The system requires a contact ID for import. To eliminate errors you can delete those contacts without IDs from the CSV import file, edit the import job, upload a new import file, Save and Return, and re-attempt the Verify.

(7) Click Import


You can update custom fields also by using the Contact Update import utility as well.   The main difference is, with the "contact update import", if someone already has data in custom field and your import contains their contactID/memberhshipID and the cell is empty in the spreadsheet it will not update their custom field from what it was to make it blank. With the "custom field import" if a cell is empty it will remove the value in the custom field.

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