Import via Excel with blueprints

I was wondering if it's possible to import projects from Excel and immediately add a blueprint to the project beingi imported?

I have a list of all projects, but no tasks yet. I want to add the tasks based on blueprints (which I already have).  I am willing to make multiple imports for different blueprints if neccesary. 

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Welcome to the Community, Chris Van den Ende! As it's said in this Knowledge Base article, it is possible to import blueprints. Please let me know if you'd like to receive further instructions, I'll be happy to raise a ticket with our Support team for you 🙂

Lisa Community Team at Wrike Wrike Product Manager Become a Wrike expert with Wrike Discover

Lisa Wrike Team member Become a Wrike expert with Wrike Discover

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Hi Lisa, thanks for your answer. I had already found the import functionality. 

My question is more specfic. I want to import projects and the apply a blueprint (during the import) which has all the tasks. 
My import file only has projects in it. 

Is this possible?

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Hi Chris Van den Ende,

I have been searching for the same answer and determined that this is not a feature. I really hope they do add it soon, as it seems like a relatively easy ask to implement and makes sense that when importing projects (especially in bulk) users will want to simultaneously apply an existing blueprint to the import. It could even be part of the Request form - a mass import option if you will. Hopefully we will see this in the future soon! 

My team and myself did however find a work around that may help you. It's still more work than what we may have hoped for with using the pre-existing blueprints, but it'll get the job done.

  1. Prep your project import file with all of your projects listed in the correct format for column headers for import and your custom columns. (This includes having the Key/Folder/Parent Task etc. columns at the beginning of your file.)
  2. Build out your blueprint/form in Wrike - implement a single copy of it so it is present in the folder you will be placing all projects into.
  3. Access the folder with a copy of your active blueprint and export a copy. It is important to export from this level so you can see all blueprint information in the export.
  4. Open the export and confirm how many (X number) of rows of tasks are present under the main project. (If the folder column has a / then it is the main project as it's going in the main folder. If the folder column has /project name/ then it is a task under the project.)
  5. In your prepped project import file, confirm the columns are in the same order as your export, add X number of rows between your projects, and copy all task rows from the export into the import file. You're copying the blueprint structure and all tasks over to your import by doing this.
  6. Update the folder column in the import file to have the correct /project name/ for all of the tasks you just copied.
  7. Repeat this process however many times needed to apply the blueprint to all projects, ensuring you're updating the /project name/ in the folder column so that the copy of tasks you add will be applied to the correct project.
  8. Once all of your projects/blueprints are in order in the import file, makes sure to update the Key column from top to bottom starting at 1 and ending at the number of rows you're importing. IE: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6.......to 100 down, etc. as needed.
  9. Follow regular Import procedure in Wrike in the space/folder of your choosing.

 

There are work arounds within Excel to make this insert row/copy/paste process a lot faster. I had 94 projects I needed to import using the same blueprint, so I did the following to make things faster: (Note: to do this work around in Excel you'll need to use a table or filters.)

  1. Copied my import sheet into a new tab in Excel, then deleted the data for all but one of my projects. This gave me the column header layout I needed and an example project to work with.
  2. Copied over the blueprint tasks directly under the project row, updated the /project name/ in the Folder column to match the project.
  3. Copied all rows of this instance of the project and blueprint, then pasted a copy directly under the last row of the last set of tasks.
  4. Updated the Folder column to have UPDATE PROJECT instead of a single / on the project line.
  5. Re-copied from UPDATE PROJECT down to the last line of the blueprint tasks below it, then pasted the entire setup 9x under that. From there I could highlight 10 copies of my blueprint on the file and paste it until I reach a minimum of the 94 projects I needed to import. (This was fastest for me, but don't forget to only add as many copies as you need. Otherwise you'd end up with some extra imports occurring.)
  6. Update the Key column from 1, 2, 3, 4.....to the end of the list in order. DO NOT SKIP THIS STEP.
  7. Sort the Folder column alphabetically to group all of the UPDATE PROJECT rows into a condensed list. Then turn on the filter for the Folder column to view only the "UPDATE PROJECT" rows. 
  8. Go back to your original project import sheet that has only the project level data. Highlight and copy from the Folder column (DO NOT include the Key column in this copy!) and paste over all of the UPDATE PROJECT rows in your second sheet. This should result in the Folder column displaying the single / again for all projects as you fill in all of the data for the import. (Note - you already have the first project on the list added to the second sheet as it was used to setup the formatting. Start at project number two.)
  9. Remove the filter on the Folder column and then sort lowest to highest on the Key column to reorganize things into the correct order. You should now have a list of your projects with the tasks directly under them due to the sorting of the Key column.
  10. Starting at the top of your list, copy the project name from the Title column (which is formatted /project name/) and highlight all tasks in the Folder column until you reach the next project (denoted by the single / in the Folder column) and paste. Repeat this process for all projects to update the tasks to be assigned to the appropriate project.

I then separated the sheets by copying the one for import to a new workbook and saving it. That way there would be no chance of conflict when running the import in Wrike. (You could also just use two separate workbooks to begin with of course, I just wanted to keep everything in one place initially.)

 

Important Notes:

  • This work around will copy the descriptive information of each of the tasks/subtasks but it loses all FORMATTING. So any custom formatted text, bullet points, or hyperlinked words will be lost. The raw information/url will still be present. When formatting your blueprint, you may want to take this into consideration and add dash bullets and line spacing to break apart text to make it easier to read.
  • Make sure your custom columns in Wrike match your custom columns in your import file EXACTLY. If they do not match, Wrike will still import the data, but it will create a new (hidden) custom column with the name that is in your import file. This can lead to some issues if you have pre-existing data in Wrike under the correct custom columns already. 
  • If there are blueprint assigned projects/tasks, aka the Assigned To column in the blueprint, the import will cause a mass flood of assignment notifications to those team members. (Unless they have custom notifications setup of course.) 

I hope this all helps! Just wanted to share for you and anyone else who is going through a bulk project import while needing to apply a blueprint.

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Thanks Melissa Lawrence. This is basically the same answer I received from Wrike and had found myself.

What a great and thoruigh walkthough! It'll sure save people some time. I would add, maybe make a TEMP folder for importing into if you already have a lot of projects in Wrike as not to mess anything up. Other than that, follow the steps from Melissa above!

While it works, it's still a lot of work. It would be great to have this feature implemented standard

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