- Importing Skilled Staff in Bulk

Importing Skilled Staff in Bulk

This tool allows creating skilled records for multiple users in multiple documents. The names of the staff imported as ‘already skilled’, will appear on the reading list (‘Skilled’ tab) of the documents they have read with the status, ‘Confirmed’. It is intended primarily for new accounts, with no previous history of reading tasks. However, it can be used at any time, if there are multiple staff members who have already read a number of documents and this information hasn’t been registered in iPassport yet. It can even be used to import un-skilled staff, where the system will generate tasks with a deadline to confirm having read a document in the future.

The importer tool can be found in the ‘Controlled Documents’ area by navigating to ‘Laboratory Records > Controlled Documents > Import Skilled Staff’:


To see the ‘Import Skilled Staff’ tab, a user requires the permission, “Skilled Staff:Add Skilled Staff” in any OU.
To add skilled staff to documents from different OUs, the user requires the same permission (“Skilled Staff:Add Skilled Staff”) in each OU where the documents reside.

Features and Considerations

A new framework has been developed for this tool and other importer tools in the system. The aim is to make it easier for users to quickly populate their iPassport accounts with information migrated from other systems.

  • This importer tool accepts spreadsheets in Excel™ format (.xlsx) as well as in CSV format. There is no need to convert ‘.xlsx’ files to CSV here.
  • The importer progressively validates the information, so large numbers of records can be processed.
  • The importer will only work for staff members who have an active user record. If a staff member does not have a user record, they will be marked as invalid and the feedback message will say the staff member cannot be found.
  • If the target document is ‘under-review’, the skills will only be imported to the under-review version and not the draft.
  • When the record is marked as duplicate (within the staging area), the status will not be automatically cleared if the original record is deleted or uploaded. If the duplicate record is edited, after the original one is removed, the system will revalidate it and clear the ‘duplicate’ flag.
    • Duplicate checks also apply to verifying whether the staff member is already on the list of the ‘Skilled’ tab of the document in reference. If so, hovering over the yellow warning triangle will display the reason, ‘Staff is already skilled on this document’.
  • Skills imported to draft documents will always be set as not completed and tasks will be sent out to users when the draft is authorised, just as the system does now.

The data can be uploaded to a staging area in three steps and can then be checked and adjusted before importing it to the records within the account.

Step 1 - Download a Template

To facilitate the import, a formatted Excel™ template is available to download and populate, so the information can be uploaded to the system in a structured manner. Simply click the link, ‘Download blank Excel file’, to retrieve a template which you can open in Excel.

Step 2 - Preparing the Data

The template file will have a header row with the fields which will be imported. This row should not be altered; no additional columns should be added and they should be kept in the order they are presented. If such changes are made, the system will reject the file with a message saying the “upload validation failed” and a reason.

To populate the spreadsheet, use one row for each skill record and please ensure that,

  • the Document Indices are entered exactly as they appear in iPassport (copy/paste is easiest)
  • the Staff Members are also entered accurately; usernames, full names, or email addresses are accepted
  • the Completion Date should state the date when the skill was confirmed
The system does it's best to interpret different date formats but please check the Excel™sheet for errors before using it.
  • if the corresponding ‘Confirmed’ field is set as ‘False’, a date is not required in this field
  • Comments are not required; the column can be populated with free text if required
  • the Confirmed column should only have ‘True’ or ‘False’ entered; cells should not be left empty in this column
  • Due Dates must be entered if the corresponding ‘Confirmed’ field is set as ‘False’

Step 3 - Importing the Data

Once the spreadsheet is ready, it can be simply saved and uploaded by either,

  • dragging it into the dotted line rectangle labelled, ’Click or drag and drop the Excel file to add new Skilled Staff to the import queue’
  • or, by clicking inside the rectangle and using the browser window that pops up to find and select it.

The data imported will immediately start appearing on the screen and the system will quickly validate all the information. All the feedback is available on this screen to easily identify and fix problems.

Reviewing Data and Preparing to Import

The staging area will display all records which have been uploaded.

It has a Search field to help locate particular records, and two filters:

  • Show Errors Only - which hides all rows validated and ready to import
  • Show Only My Imports - which hides all rows added by other users

Four buttons are available at all times:

  • Clear Import Queue - This button will delete all the records in the staging area. If rows are selected by ticking their checkbox in the left column, the label will change to, ‘Delete x Skilled Staff’, where ‘x’ is the number of rows selected.
  • Import All Skilled Staff - This button will import all rows below which have passed validation. If rows are selected by ticking their checkboxes in the left column, the label will change to, ‘Import x Skilled Staff’, where ‘x’ is the number of rows selected.
  • Add New Records - Records can be added to the staging area by clicking this button. It will bring up a pop-up window like the initial screen (before the staging area is populated), where a template can be downloaded, if needed, and where a populated file can be uploaded.
  • Edit in Excel - Clicking this button will invoke a pop-up window, similar to the one above, containing a link to a spreadsheet populated with the information currently in the staging area (Download Queue in Excel file). It also offers a place to upload the edited file again.
    • Before clicking the button, rows can be selected and/or filters can be used to condense the list and only include in the Excel file those records which need amending.

The Staging Table

The information is displayed in a table with the following columns and features:

  • Checkbox column on the left
    • One or multiple rows can be individually selected.
    • The ‘SHIFT’ (⬆️) key can be used to select or unselect multiple rows.
    • The checkbox in the header area selects/unselects all the rows below.
    • When at least one checkbox is ticked, an additional button appears above the table - ‘Edit x Skilled Staff’, where ‘x’ is the number of rows selected.
  • STATUS - If information is missing or not found by the system, a yellow warning triangle will display on the row of the problem record. Hovering over the triangle will bring up a message listing the errors. When a record is ready to import, the status will show a green thumbs-up.
  • Record data uploaded from the spreadsheet:
    • DUE DATE
  • ACTIONS - There are three icons in this column:
    • Magnifying glass (🔍) - to open the ‘Edit Skilled Staff’ pop-up window; additionally, the pop-up window can be opened anywhere in the row where the pointer turns to a ‘pointing hand’
    • Import row () - to import a single row if it’s ready
    • Trash/Bin (🗑) - to delete a single row

Fixing Errors

If any of the cells have an error, they will be highlighted in pink.
If a row still displays a yellow warning triangle in the status column, and no cells appear to be invalid (highlighted in pink), the reason is most likely that the user doesn’t have permission to add skilled staff in the OU of the document.
Clicking a cell (where the pointer turns to a hand) or the row’s magnifying glass, will bring up the ‘Edit Skilled Staff’ pop-up window, which includes all the fields of the single row so they can be edited.

  • Fields which have an error will display the reason in small red text below them.
  • Hovering over the small boxes labelled, ‘original value’, will reveal the data originally entered in the records being edited.
  • Clicking the Staff Member field will bring up a dropdown menu of users. Start typing a first name to jump to matching names on the list and click the desired name when located.
  • If the Confirmed field is set as ‘True’, the date field next to it will be labelled, ‘Completion Date’; if it’s set to ‘False’, the date field will be labelled, ‘Due Date’, according to the information required to validate the record. If the ‘Confirmed’ field is changed, the system will delete dates in the wrong cells.
  • The # Date field produces a calendar when clicked, where dates can be selected, but dates can also be edited by highlighting the day, month or year, then entering a number or using the up/down arrows to increase or decrease the value.
    Once fixed, click Save Skilled Staff to validate, update and return to the staging area.

If multiple rows contain the same error, they can be selected and clicking the button, ‘Edit x Skilled Staff’ will allow editing and applying the same fix to all the selected records. In this case, reasons are not provided for cells with errors; the fields will state, ‘Multiple values, click to edit…’

Importing the Skill Records

There are three ways of importing skill records once they are ready:

  • Import a single row - Clicking the ‘Import’ () icon in a row will import that record alone.
  • Import multiple rows - multiple rows can be selected by ticking their checkbox and the button, ‘Import x Skilled Staff’ will import them in one step.
  • Import all rows - Clicking Import All Skilled Staff will import all rows displayed below which have passed validation.

A confirmation dialogue box will appear, stating how many skilled staff records are to be imported.

Once imported, the skilled staff will be added with the status, ‘Confirmed’, in the ‘Skilled’ tab of the corresponding documents. ‘Staff Profiles’ will also list the documents in the ‘Skills’ tab of the corresponding staff member. If the staff member was already a member of a skilled group, which includes any of the documents added in the import, the system will avoid duplicating records.

The next article covers, Skilled Groups, which is the preferred method to add skilled staff in the system when there are collections of documents that teams of users should read.