New feature discussion: Data imports

Hey all,

Creating a standalone topic for the import feature that made its debut as part of the sitewide redesign thread we created last week. Here’s a couple screenshots, followed by an explanation. Please share your thoughts / comments / concerns!

If you’ve ever used a product like Mailchimp, you’re probably pretty familiar with this pattern already. Essentially, it’s as simple as uploading a CSV, mapping the fields in the CSV to existing data in your process, and then running the import.

I’m anticipating that there will be an MVP stage data importer, followed by a more robust one we develop in tandem with some other upcoming features. Here’s the breakdown:

MVP importer

  • After running an import, imported data shows up as line items in the dashboard exactly like non-imported processes. We will add a column to dashboard line items indicating source (CityGrows or imported)
  • We will add a new dashboard filter for filtering by source (CityGrows or import)
  • Clicking on an imported processes will bring up a page displaying the imported data. It will look the same as the existing public process summary. This page will not be the same as the active process view, which displays processes launched on CityGrows
  • All imported processes will be considered to be completed
  • Imported data will be searchable in the same manor as regular data


  • Imported data will not be associated with a user account
  • Imported data will not be editable (is this okay for MVP? Is there any reason historical data would need to be changed?)

Upgraded importer

  • Once we’ve built the upgraded directory, a feature that is also in the pipeline, we’ll upgrade the importer to (optionally) create directory listings for users enumerated in imported data
  • Assuming it’s needed, we’ll implement the ability to modify imported data, as well as an activity log to track modifications and associated users
  • Ability to import associated payment data, if required
  • Potentially, ability to import non-completed processes / create user accounts for those users

CC @Brittany @Catherine