How can I import data?

Import option is one of the important features in an applicant tracking system. In Zoho Recruit you can import job openings, candidates, clients and client contacts if you are authorized to perform this operation. Otherwise, the Import link in a module's home page will be hidden in the user interface.

Import Checklist

Before importing the data, please go through the following checklist:

  1. Permission: Make sure you have the access and privilege to import data. If you do not have the privilege, the Import link will be hidden in the user interface.
  2. File Format: The supported formats are Excel (XLS) and Comma Separated Values (CSV). In case of XLS file, only MS Excel 97 - 2003 formats are suppported. Unexpected errors may occur if the XLS files contain any special controls like combo filters or images embedded in it.
  3. Forbidden Characters:Any data for the file to be imported should not contain the following characters:
    • Double quotation marks(") - use only as a field delimiter
    • Vertical bar (|)
    • Angle brackets (<>)
  4. Mandatory fields: The required (mandatory) fields must contain a value. Make sure you do not leave the mandatory fields blank, in the XLS/CSV file.The Field Mapping page in the Import wizard shows the required fields in the * format. Do not proceed to the next step without mapping the mandatory fields.
  5. Date format: The date value for the import data file must be in the given date formats.
  6. File Size: Make sure the file size (Import data) does not exceed 5MB.
  7. Import limits: You can upload upto 1000 records at a time.
  8. Check box Data: Make sure that the data you plan to import from Boolean or check box fields contain values that will properly convert during the import process.
    Imported data from Boolean and check box fields are converted as follows:
    • If check box is selected - True or 1
    • If check box is not selected - False or 0
  9. Drop-down List: All data values displayed in the drop-down lists must exist in the corresponding Zoho Recruit fields.
  10. Field Names: Make sure the first row of data (records) in the source file contains the column headings or field names rather than the actual data values. These heading field name values help identify the data when you map the new data to the existing fields in Zoho Recruit.
  11. Blank Lines:Remove all blank lines from the file to be imported. A blank line is interpreted as the end of the file.
  12. User Name: When imported records are assigned to other users also, you need to map the Owner field with the appropriate field from the import file. While importing, the import file should have a column that contains the exact email address of the users to whom you want to assign each record. Only then will the records automatically get assigned to the respective users while importing.

To import data:

  1. Click the [Module] tab.
  2. In the [Module] Home page, click Import [Module].
    Module refers to Job Openings, Candidates, Clients and Contacts tab. 
  3. In the Import [Module] page do the following:
    1. Select Import My [Records] or Import My Organization [Records].
    2. Click Click here to browse and select the required file that is to be imported.
    3. Select the check box to Enable Manual Candidate approval.
      The records will be manually approved by the admin before being assigned to specific users. This option is available only while importing candidates.
    4. Select SkipOverwrite or Clone for duplicate records.
      The skip and overwrite option is available only in the Paid Editions.
  4. Under Advanced Options, do the following:
    1. Select the Character Encoding from the list.
    2. Select the Date and Time format for the date and time values in the import file.
    3. Select a Workflow Task, if required. 
      Note: The work flow task will be available in the list only if you had already created a work flow task.
    4. Select an option from the list to associate all imported candidates to a job opening.
    5. Select the Source through which the candidate was imported.
      This option is available only while importing candidates.
    6. Click Next to continue.
  5. In the Map Fields section, do the following:
    1. Associate the fields in CSV/XLS file column header with the corresponding [Module] fields in Zoho Recruit (Mandatory fields should be properly mapped).
    2. File/Image Upload field:
      If you have "File/Image Upload" fields in the form, please follow the steps below: For example, say you have "Attach Resume" field.
      1. In your XLS or CSV file, create a seperate column for "Attach Resume" field and name it as "Attachment" (user defined).
      2. Under the column "Attachment" enter the file names.
      3. All files under the "Attachment" should be created as a single Zip file.
      4. Browse the Zip file in the second page of the Import wizard (Details Mapping).
  6. Click Next to continue.
  7. In the Confirm Mapping section, verify whether all fields are mapped correctly.
  8. Click Import.
    When the process is over, the added, updated and skipped records will be listed for your reference.


  • Once Import process begins, you cannot cancel it and the manual approval option is available only while importing leads.
  • If you select a workflow task while importing, the Notify Assignee option in the selected workflow task, will not be applicable.
  • In the Free Edition, only the Clone option is available.
  • The option to cloneskip and overwrite records is available in the Professional & Enterprise Edition.The skip and overwrite options can be used only if the import file is in CSV format with not more than 5000 records per batch.
  • In case of duplicate records, only the fields that are mapped will be overwritten.