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How can I update Lists data for Custom Fields in bulk or via a spreadsheet?
How can I update Lists data for Custom Fields in bulk or via a spreadsheet?
Kathleen McGahey avatar
Written by Kathleen McGahey
Updated over a week ago

As the Admin of your Tribal Habits portal, there will be times when you need to manage any Lists types of your Custom Fields in bulk. The "Bulk upload or enrol" feature allows admins to use CSV spreadsheets to manage data in bulk.

NOTE: This upload only manages items in existing List fields (it will not create a new List field itself) and items cannot be deleted via this import.

Admins can navigate to the People menu in the admin area and use the "I want to..." menu on the top right of the page to select "Bulk upload or enrol". There are a variety of data imports available via this feature. Please see this article for an overview of the choices.

In this article, we review uploading Lists data - to update existing Lists.

NOTE: Only Super and Standard admin access levels can create or update Lists via the upload / import CSV function.

What are the steps in uploading Lists?

The Lists upload follows four steps:

  1. Select the import type (Lists).

  2. Select Continue

  3. Upload your CSV.

  4. Map the columns in your CSV to the fields in your portal.

  5. Process the upload.

Step 1 - Type

In Step 1, select Lists.

You will need to create your CSV for the upload. There is a template CSV you can download for this type, which will also export your current Lists.

What columns/fields are required for an upload of Lists?

If you are uploading a CSV with EXISTING Lists, then you need:

  • List id - mandatory for existing

  • List name - mandatory for existing

  • Item id - mandatory for existing

  • Item name - mandatory to update an existing List field

NOTE: If using the template provided, any List fields with no items will not appear in the template below. List ID numbers for Lists with no items can be obtained from the Custom Fields panel in Admin/Accounts. You can review how to obtain your List and Item ID's in the Custom Fields article FAQ'S here.

If you are uploading a CSV with NEW List items, then for each new group you need the following columns:

  • List id - mandatory - List ID must already exist to create a NEW list item

  • List name - mandatory - List name must already exist to create a NEW list item

  • Item id - leave blank to create NEW list items for an existing list field

  • Item name - mandatory for NEW

Step 2 - Upload

You can now upload your CSV (only standard CSV files are accepted).

Step 3 - Map

You now need to map your CSV to your fields in Tribal Habits and select a few key settings.


Now review each column in your upload and select which Tribal Habits field to map the data to. Select 'Ignore this column' if a column does not need to, or cannot be, mapped. All CSV columns must be mapped or ignored.


Please check that you have mapped all columns in your upload to your fields, or selected 'Ignore this column' if not required.

Step 4 - Process

Your upload will now be processed. You can return to other tasks or go to the overview page to see the results of your uploads and any errors.

On the overview page you can view your uploads (Super Admins can see uploads from all users, while other admins access levels can only see uploads of their own).

What if there are errors?

If there errors in your upload, you will see an Errors file to download on the overview table and a number of errors. Admins can download that Error file, which is a CSV containing each row in the upload which had an error.

NOTE: Rows with errors will not be processed. This means Lists were not updated or added.

When you open the 'Errors' file, the final row of the CSV will outline the errors in that row. Admins can fix those errors and re-upload the file with the fixed rows to import those users.

Common errors include:

  • The List ID does not exist or is missing - this error occurs if you have tried to import new 'Item Id's' and/or 'Item names' and populating the 'List id' column with data that does not already exist

    • Ensure that your List field already exists to be able to create new or update existing List items

    • Check this by navigating to Admin->Accounts->Fields and reviewing your Custom Fields with 'List' types associated

  • The item doesn't belong to the List name field specified in your CSV (updating existing list fields)

    • This error will specifically state 'The item doesn't belong to the *list_name* requirements list'

    • Check that you have correctly mapped your existing fields to the correct list name

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