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  1. #1
    2 Star Lounger
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    Interface File to Outlook Contacts (Microsoft Outlook)

    I am currently updating the company wide outlook contact folders manually. I am updating the name, jobtitle, home phone, work phone, deleting terminated employees and adding new hires . It takes me a full day per week to upkeep these folders every week. Can Microsoft Outlook accept an interface file from our company Human Resources Information system? If so, what type of file and how is this done? My company said it wasn't possible but I am not taking no for an answer.

    Any information will be great!

  2. #2
    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: Interface File to Outlook Contacts (Microsoft Outlook)

    You can import Contacts from MS Access, if you get the HRIS system to output any Access file and then structure that Access file to match the Outlook Contact record structure.
    -John ... I float in liquid gardens
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  3. #3
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    Re: Interface File to Outlook Contacts (Microsoft Outlook)

    A few questions...
    Can it override all of the records in the folder with the new file every week? In other words, a full file?
    Can the Access file be written so that the structure is already there when the file is extracted?
    What type of file? xls, txt?

  4. #4
    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: Interface File to Outlook Contacts (Microsoft Outlook)

    First, I haven't done anything like this myself, and second, it's going to depend on what your HRIS system can produce. If you have more than 10,000 employees I'd use Access rather than Excel, and I'm very limited in Access knowledge. Since I haven't done it, I'd try the following steps:

    1. Export your contacts to Excel or Access so that you know what the data layout is. Keep the Contact record layout as a template.

    2. See if the HRIS will produce an Excel file or an Access MDB file or a text or structured text file of the data you need, or a superset of the data you need. (A structured text file would be, for example, a CSV or tab-delimited file, or other delimited file.

    3. Import the HRIS file into Excel or Access and structure the data to fit the Contact record template. That may be the tricky part. Eventually you can automate it.

    4. Backup the existing Contacts file and delete all Contacts. (I don't think you can leave the contacts in place and overwrite them, but I may be wrong, never having done it.)

    5. Import the file, check out the results in the Contacs folder against the source data.
    -John ... I float in liquid gardens
    UTC -7ąDS

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