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The source refers to the data being imported into Totara Learn and should be configured for each enabled element prior to importing any data. A Site Administrator can configure source settings for a specific element.

  1. Go to Site administration > HR Import > Sources.
  2. Select the element name.
  3. Select the source option (either CSV or External database). 
  4. Configure the settings accordingly.
  5. Click Save changes

CSV 

You can configure options related to the incoming source data.

SettingDescriptionNotes
CSV file encoding

This option allows you to select the encoding for the CSV file. The default is 'UTF-8' but this can be changed.  

Source file encoding will be converted to the target database encoding providing the correct encoding for the source has been chosen for this setting.
Delimiter

This field allows you to select the delimiter used in the CSV file. Options include:

  • Comma (,)
  • Semi-colon (;\)
  • Colon (:\)
  • Tab (\t)
  • Pipe (|)
-
Fields to importDecide which fields you would like to import. The fields available in this section varies depending on the element. See Fields to import for more information.
Field mappingsAllows you to enter the column title for each field if these vary from the default. The fields available in this section varies depending on the element.See Field mappings for more information. 

File details in configure CSV source

External database 

Configure the settings for importing from an external database, including entering the external database connection details.

SettingDescriptionNotes
Database type

The database type e.g. MySQL or PostgreSQL.

Options that appear in the Database type dropdown are dependent on what database drivers have been setup in your php.ini file.
Database name

The name of the database you are connecting to.

-
Database hostname The database hostname e.g. 'localhost'-
Database userThe user account that has the appropriate database access privileges.-
Database passwordThe user account password.-
Database portThe port id number of the database-
Database tableThe name of the database table that contains the element data.-
Fields to importDecide which fields you would like to import. The fields available in this section varies depending on the element. See Fields to import for more information.
field mappingsAllows you to enter the column title for each field if these vary from the default. The fields available in this section varies depending on the element.See Field mappings for more information. 

Click the Test database connection button to verify that the details were entered correctly and a connection can be made.

The use of empty strings in your external database will delete the field's value in your site. Null values in your external database will leave the field's current value in your site.

Specific external database source settings.

Select fields for import 

Both sources include the Fields to import section. For each element, there are mandatory default fields that need to be included and there are additional optional fields that can be imported. Tick the checkbox next to each field that will be included in the source.

There are different fields available for each element.

Organisation

There are some mandatory fields; these include:

FieldDescriptionNotes
idnumber

A unique identifier that must be specified for each record being imported.

This is a mandatory field. 
fullname

The full name of the organisation item being imported e.g. 'Head Office'.

This is a mandatory field. 
frameworkidnumberThe ID number of the framework the organisation items are being imported to.
This is a mandatory field. 


You need to create your organisation framework and specify an ID number prior to import. If not, HR Import will not know where to import the organisation data to and this will result in an error during import.

timemodifiedA Unix timestamp that confirms the last time a user's details were changed.
This is a mandatory field. 


If you want records to be updated every time an import is performed and not take the Unix timestamp value into account, you can specify a zero (0) value for this field. This will effectively force HR Import to import the data every time and ignore changes in Unix timestamp values.

Shortname

The organisation short name.

Must have Display hierarchy shortnames enabled in Advanced features.
Description

The organisation description.

-
Parent

The ID number of the organisation's parent item. This is useful if you want to create sub-items, or children, of an organisation.

-

Type

The ID number of any organisation types you may have created. 

Only one type per item may be specified.

Position

There are a number of mandatory fields, these are:

FieldDescriptionNotes
idnumber

A unique identifier that must be specified for each record being imported.

This is a mandatory field. 
fullname

The full name of the position item being imported e.g. 'CEO'.

This is a mandatory field. 
frameworkidnumberThe ID number of the framework the position items are being imported to.
This is a mandatory field. 


You need to create your position framework and specify an ID number prior to import. If not, HR Import will not know where to import the position data to and this will result in an error during import.

timemodified

A Unix timestamp that confirms the last time a user's details were changed.

This is a mandatory field. 


If you want records to be updated every time an import is performed and not take the Unix timestamp value into account, you can specify a zero (0) value for this field. This will effectively force HR Import to import the data every time and ignore changes in Unix timestamp values.

Shortname

The position short name.

Must have Display hierarchy shortnames enabled in Advanced features.
Description

The position description.

-
Parent

The ID number of the position's parent item. This is useful if you want to create sub-items, or children, of a position.

-
Type

The ID number of any position types you may have created. Note that only one type per item may be specified.

-

User

The mandatory fields are:

FieldDescriptionNotes
idnumber

A unique identifier that must be specified for each record being imported. It will not be possible to sync data for users who have been added manually and have not been assigned an idnumber. By assigning these manually added users with a idnumber it will then make it possible to sync their data by including them in the CSV sync file. In 2.5 and later versions you will also need to tick the HR Import checkbox within a user's profile to allow them to be updated in the sync/import process.


This is a mandatory field. 

This checkbox will only become visible in a users profile once you've enabled/clicked the eye-icon for the User import option in HR Import > Elements> Manage Elements.

timemodified

A Unix timestamp that confirms the last time a user's details were changed.


This is a mandatory field. 

If you want records to be updated every time an import is performed and not take the Unix timestamp value into account, you can specify a zero (0) value for this field. This will effectively force HR Import to import the data every time and ignore changes in Unix timestamp values.

username

The username of the user being imported.

This is a mandatory field. 
deletedIf Source contains all records is set to No, the deleted flag must be provided. In your source, specify the value 1 if a user is to be deleted or the value 0 to create or update the user. This is a mandatory field. 
firstnameThe first name of the user being imported.This is a mandatory field. 
lastnameThe last name of the user being imported.This is a mandatory field. 
emailThe email address of the user being imported.This is a mandatory field. 

There are a number of additional user profile fields that can be imported. Any custom user profile fields created will also be available.

When users are created using the CSV sync/import process and the password column is not included, a random password will be generated and will be sent to users in a welcome email. The user will then be required to change this password the first time they login. 

If you have set up a different authentication system such as LDAP this will be different and you'll need to include the "auth" column in the CSV.

The following fields are important to be mindful of for mapping users to their appropriate organisation, position and manager.

  • Organisation: Specify the idnumber of the organisation item you wish to map the user to.
  • Position: Specify the idnumber of the position item you wish to map the user to.
  • Manager: Specify the idnumber of the manager user you wish to map the user to.

When making a user a manager of another user, the manager user is automatically granted the 'Staff Manager' role permissions and will have the capability to manage their team members.

Circular management job assignment loops

This occurs when a manager reports to themselves, this can occur when users are imported that have a manager assigned to them that they are the manager of further down the management hierarchy. For example:  User A has User B as their manager, User B has User C as their manager, User C has User A as their manager.  It is also possible with multiple job assignments to have a loop as follows. If you have two users A and B each with two job assignments 1 and 2, then you are allowed to have A1 > B1 > A2 > B2, but you couldn't then add > A1 at the end. This can lead to unexpected behaviour for management approvals and management reporting so needs to be prevented.

If a circular management is found when importing a manager with HR Import then one or more of the users forming the circular reference will fail to have their manager assigned, with a notice explaining why.

To import the users identified as having a circular reference the records of the import file will need to be adjusted so the circular reference no longer exists. In the example above User C will need to have their manager changed from User A.

Field mappings 

The Field mappings section allows you to enter the column title for each field if you want to match the names of the columns that are being imported to the HR Import field names.

More often than not, the field names in the source data might not match the field names required by HR Import to import data. Field mapping is useful if another system is exporting the source data files or being connected to directly, so that HR Import knows what to look for in terms of fields and column names.

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