Building a Form via Import

This article covers how to create a form by importing data. You must be at least an Administrator to use the import featureIn order to learn how to import data into an existing form, please see Importing Data.


Forms can be built field by field using our Form Builder, but it is often the case that your data may already exist on another platform.  It is possible to create a form by importing existing data into Zengine.  Note, however, that there are pros and cons to this.


  • This is the easiest and fastest way to import your data. 
  • If you have many fields that you want to build, this is the quickest way to build the form. 


  • All data is imported as text and will be cut off after 255 characters. 
  • If you require any field types beyond text, text box, date, or dropdown, you will not be able to convert your data to those fields later. 

If you decide that you would like to proceed with importing data, you will first need to prepare your file for import.

Preparing Your File for Import

It is recommended that instead of importing all of your data at once, you import just two rows: the header and one line of data. By focusing on a smaller set of data, it allows you to troubleshoot any issues and customize the field types within the Zengine form builder before importing all of your data to a now-existing form. 

After whittling your spreadsheet down to just these two rows of data, you will need to save it as a .CSV file.

Please read these guidelines in order to ensure that your file will import successfully:

  1. Header Row: The first row of your spreadsheet should contain the names for every column.  These will correspond to the field names on your new form. 
  2. Mapping columns to fields: Please ensure that you have one column for every field on your form and no extra columns. 
  3. Order of columns: You should order your columns in the order that you wish them to appear in your form, although you can reorder them later if you wish. 
  4. Date Formatting: Dates should be in yyyy-mm-dd format. 
  5. Maximum of 255 characters per cell: At this time, when you import a file to create a form, all fields will be created as text fields, so they will get cut off after 255 characters. You can convert the field to a longer text box later, but anything beyond 255 characters will not be in the system. 

Importing Your File

Once you have prepared your file and saved it as a .CSV, it's time to import into Zengine.  Navigate to the Data tab on the navigation bar.  To the right of your existing forms, you will see an "Add Form" button.  Clicking this will bring up a dropdown which includes the option "Create a form by importing data."

Clicking this will bring up a page where you will select your file.  Choose the .CSV file you have prepared.

At this point, the system will process your file. This will take a few moments. It will then present you with a preview of your data.  Review the preview to make sure everything looks right. If it does, you can click "Continue."

At this point, your import will be processed. This can take several minutes or longer, depending on the size of the file. You will receive a system notification when the import is completed, and you do not have to stay on the same screen to wait for it to complete.

Remember that all data will be imported as text, so once your import is complete, you may want to go into the Form Builder and change your fields to be dropdowns, dates, or multi-line text boxes.

At this point, your form is ready to import the rest of your data.  Please refer to Importing to an Existing Form for assistance.


When you go to upload your form, you may receive an error message.  

Ensure that your file does not contain any blank columns, that there is data within the file, and that the file is a CSV.  If you continue to encounter problems, we're here to help. Us the Contact Us section at the top of this page for assistance. Make sure to elaborate on any error messages you're receiving to help us diagnose it quickly for you.

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