By using a feature in the Connections tool (often seen in the system as the Mentoring Connections tool), administrators can import connections through a CSV file to create many connections all at once.
Importing connections is an excellent way to get connections that were already in progress outside of Chronus into the software, or, if connections needed to be created by committee as a requirement of the organization, this feature makes connecting those users an absolute breeze with just a few clicks!
Preparing Your File for Import
CSV files used to import connections require the following information in the first row as the header row and at least one entry for each of the following headers beneath their corresponding columns as the minimum amount of data:
- Mentor Email Address
- Mentee Email Address
You can also include a column labeled Mentoring Connection Name to define a specific name for each connection, if you would like to define those on your own. If this column isn't present in the file, then the system will use the default naming schema that is configured under the Connection Settings tool (either First Name & First Name or Last Name & Last Name).
You can download a minimal CSV template by clicking here. Note that the second row of this file will contain an example pairing for reference; please be sure to remove these examples before adding your own data to the file and before importing your own connections.
CSV files uploaded to Chronus must be encoded in UTF-8. The file included in the link above is already saved with this encoding, but if you are creating your own version from a scratch, you can set this encoding to your document in Excel by clicking File -> Save As. Next, click the drop-down menu just beneath the file name and select "CSV UTF-8 (Comma delimited) (*.csv)" from the list, then click Save to commit the change:
To get started with importing connections, first navigate to the (Mentoring) Connections tool by clicking Manage in the left navigation panel, then click the Matching card, followed by (Mentoring) Connections.
Once you are in the tool, in the upper right corner of the page, click the down arrow to the right of the Create New (Mentoring) Connection button, then click Import (Mentoring) Connections, as shown in the image below:
Clicking Import Connections will take you to this page:
Please Note: Be sure to read through all of the instructions listed on the page and make any necessary changes before uploading the file to ensure your CSV file will be accepted by the system.
Once your CSV file is ready, upload it into the box beneath the instructions section, then click the Continue button to take you to the mapping page:
Here you will select:
- The Connection Plan Template that the imported connections will utilize
- Whether these imports will be in a Drafted state or will be published immediately
- Who the connections will be created by (this will be the admin account you are currently using by default)
- Which column contains mentor emails and which column contains mentee emails within the CSV document
- If you also included Mentoring Connection Name data in your file, you can map the column on this page as well
Once you have made your selections on this page, click the Map & Validate button near the bottom right corner of the page. At this point, the system will check to ensure that:
- Users included in the file are already in the program in an Active state
- A row isn't missing a mentor or mentee email address in it
If there are any errors, they will be displayed in a red error message on the following screen after the system attempts to validate the file:
If your file does not have any errors, click the Complete button on the right side of the page to import your connections.
If there are any errors in your file, click the hyperlink in the error message ("...errors in # rows...") to download the error log to your device. Open the error log file to see which rows had errors and what those errors were:
If there are multiple errors in a row, you may need to click the individual cell under the "Error Message(s)" column to see all of them, as demonstrated in the image above.
From this point, you can either continue to complete the import for the pairs that did not contain any errors, or click Cancel to return to the previous tab and upload a corrected version of the CSV file, then try validating again.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Can I import group connections through CSV as well?
You can! For each additional individual with the same role (i.e. a second mentor or a second mentee), add a comma, followed by the email address of the user to be added to the connection. Repeat this process as needed until the roles are fulfilled for the connection.
As an example, if you wanted three mentors to be in a connection, three mentor email addresses would all need to be in the same cell in the following format: firstname.lastname@example.org,email@example.com,firstname.lastname@example.org
I have the teacher (third) role enabled for my program. Can I import users with this role?
You can! Simply include an additional header in your CSV with the title of the role followed by the word "Email" (e.g. Teacher Email).
Just remember that each connection needs at minimum one mentor and one mentee in it—you cannot create a connection between just a mentor or mentee and a teacher.
Is there a limit to how many connections I can import at once?
You can import up to 1,000 connections per CSV document.
Can I use the import feature to update existing users in connections that have already started?
No, this feature only creates new connections.
How many times can I include a mentor in a connection?
You can include up to the number of mentoring connection slots the mentor currently has available. Any connections that you attempt to make that would go beyond that limit will not be created with the import.
How do I publish connections that I imported in a Drafted state?
On the Manage page under the Matching card, click (Mentoring) Connections, then click the tab labeled Drafted to find your drafted connections.