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Import Contacts



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Import Contacts

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Import Contacts

The TntMPD Guides has thorough help on importing contacts. If this page does not answer all of your questions, or you want more details on preparing an Excel file for import, you would benefit from reading the TntMPD help on this topic.

There are also two videos for Importing Contacts into TntMPD that you may find helpful.

View > Video: Import Contacts-Setup List in Excel

View > Video: Import Contacts from Excel

Most ministries seeking to use DonorWise will have an existing list of contacts either in their current donation or accounting system, or a contact database of some kind. Employee contact information may be found in the payroll or personnel database. By exporting those lists to Excel and re-formatting them, they can be imported into DonorWise.

Importing a contact list into DonorWise can be a complex procedure; the most difficult part of this process is converting the existing database into a format that DonorWise could import. This topic is not designed to be a comprehensive or step-by-step guide to everything necessary to import a contact list.

The length of time it will take to create an import file will vary greatly, but depends primarily on the four criteria.

1.The complexity of the existing database.

2.The consistency of the existing database (that is, all information in a certain field is the same type for each record).

3.How much information is combined in the current database. For example, in many systems the husband and wife's names are in one field, or some address and postal codes are combined in one field.

4.Your familiarity with Excel.

Overview of the Import Steps

These steps are just an overview and are explained in greater detail below.

1.Gather contact lists from existing sources.

2.Export each list to a text file or some other format Excel can open. When a ministry has multiple databases of contacts, they often are formatted differently in each database. It may be necessary to format different kinds of lists.

3.Open the lists in Excel.

4.Modify the column headings to match DonorWise field names when there is a direct match.

5.Separate fields that are combined in the existing databases.

6.Identify any fields that will not be imported into the contact database, but will be used to set up Saved Groups. These may be from fields in the current database that do not exist in DonorWise.

Export data to Excel

If a contact list is already in Excel, Access, or Outlook, it can be saved in an Excel format. Many other programs can export their contact lists in a comma separated value (.csv) text format which can then be opened in Excel.

Cleaning up the contact data

This could be the most time-consuming part of the data conversion. When converting existing data to one DonorWise can use, there are several problems that you may encounter.

Data has some missing fields (you have a name but no address).

Data that has to be split from one field to two or more (you have husband and wife in same field).

Data that does not fit anywhere (you tracked information in your old system that DonorWise does not have a field for).

Data that is inconsistent (such as phone numbers or other data is inconsistent with DonorWise formatting).

Data that has to be moved (data of multiple purposes in one field; for example, you have a postal code in an address field).

Contact IDs

If your existing database already has ID numbers for donors, staff members, or others, you may want to import those contact IDs into DonorWise so that those contacts are not issued new ID numbers.

Tip: Testing Contact imports using TntMPD

You may have to test your import several times, making adjustments each time, before you get a successful import. Because DonorWise is a very rigid database designed to prevent inadvertent (or intentional) destruction of data, it is not possible to test importing repeatedly without backing up and restoring DonorWise databases (a time-consuming process). The good news is that TntMPD uses the same contact import features as DonorWise, but the less-rigid nature of the database means you can import and delete entire groups of contacts. Once you have successfully imported your whole file into TntMPD, then you can be fairly certain of a successful import into DonorWise.

The most common problems new users experience are when they are using Organizations.

Importing into DonorWise

1.Save the data as a .csv file.

2.Select the command from the menu.

Menu Path: Tools | Import Contacts

3.Match the Excel fields to the DonorWise fields.


The column headers in the existing database.


The DonorWise field the imported fields will map to. You can drag a <Target Field> to map it, or you can leave it blank to not import the field.

Target Fields

The list of available, unused import fields. It is not necessary to import into all available fields. A <Contact ID> should not be imported unless you are certain that all Contact IDs are unique.

Data Being Imported

All of the rows in the existing database.

Try to match existing contacts


Will compare each contact with contacts already in your database, including ones previously imported during this import. This is design to prevent inadvertently importing a duplicate contact.


DonorWise will import each contact from your existing list and not compare to existing contacts.

Read More > Duplicate Contacts


Starts the import process.

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