CRM Software for Economic Development Organizations
Phone: +1 805 967 1280 | email:

How to use the Export Module in Neoserra?

Neoserra allows administrators, in administrator-mode, to export large amounts of data for use in third-party applications such as Microsoft's Power BI or Tableau. However, rather setting up the export process under a user account that is associated with a human being that may leave your program, OutreachSystems recommends that you create a separate "integration user" administrator account under which the process will be configured. The reason for this recommendation is that employees may come and go from your program, and setting up a process under one person's account means that that account has to remain active, even after the employee is no longer associated with your program in order to access the data. Setting up the export process under a generic account will ensure that the processing can continue even if the staff member who configures it, is no longer active with your program.

An export is always associated with a filter, and the data will be presented in a CSV format. By default, the internal code values will be included in the file unless a cross walk is created.

It should be noted, that OutreachSystems does not provide customer support once the export file has been created. In other words, our customer service team cannot assist you with the import of the data into third-party application. Our support is limited to the creation of the exported file. In this FAQ we will discuss the export process.

How to create an export definition

Under the Administration menu, you will find the "Export Module" menu selection. Initially the interface will simply present you with the option to create a new definition or a cross-walk:

Click "New" to create your export:

Provide a name for your export and choose the type of data you want to export. Click "Save". You will now be presented with the interface where you can start to add fields:

You can choose as many fields as you want for export. Once you have selected all your fields click "Save" to see the fields selected. If you need to add more fields, then you can click "Add Fields" again to add the remaining fields:

You can use the "Reorder" option to move fields into the order in which you want them included in the CSV file. The first row of the CSV file will always contain the name of the field. The second row and beyond contain the record data. Dates are returned in the user?s timezone at the time they created the export. Dates are returned in the standard Neoserra date format of MM/DD/YYYY HH:mm. Fields with null values are represented as an empty value in CSV. Codes will be exported based upon the internal Neoserra code value. If you want to expand the codes to the Neoserra value then you can "Edit" the coded field, and choose to transform the code to the description:

How to create a code cross-walk

If you don't want the internal Neoserra codes in your exported file, nor the Neoserra description, then alternatively, you can create a code cross-walk. Click to return to the main Export Module interface and choose More|Cross-walks:

Click "New" to create a new cross-walk. Enter a name for your cross-walk and choose the pick list from the drop down. Click Save to save you entry and you can now create your cross-walk:

To apply your new cross-walk to the export simply go back to your export and "Edit" the field for which you created a cross-walk:

Click "Save" and the codes will be expanded during the export to the new values entered in your cross-walk. The screen will display the order in which the fields will be exported and any transformation that will take place during the export:

In orange we see that the Business Size field will be exported using the Neoserra description, while the Ownership Gender field will be exported using the custom cross-walk.

How to manually run your export

As noted in the introduction, you must first create a filter before you can run your export. A filter must be created and saved. To run the export simply click the "Export" link at the top of the page:

You will be asked to select a saved filter that corresponds to the form type that you are exporting, and only records matching this filter will be exported:

Click "Save" to create the comma-delimited export file to your local system where you can review it. You will notice that the fields that were to be transformed, have in fact, been transformed:

How to create an export application

Rather than running the export manually, the administrator can also set up a user application under their Personal Preferences. Again, keep in mind that OutreachSystems recommends that you use a generic administrator account for this function - not an actual user accounts. Setting up the automated process under a generic account will allow the process to continue even after the person setting up the integration is no longer associated with the program.

Scroll to the bottom of the screen and select New|Export. Enter a name for your export, choose your export definition as created in the Export Module, and choose the corresponding filter in the Source field:

Leaving the "Allowed Sourced IP(s)" field blank means that your data can be accessed from anywhere on the internet. Alternatively, you can list specific IPs in CIDR notation separated by commas to limit access to only those IP addresses listed.

The data served up by the URL is "live". In other words, the data constantly serving up the most current data in the database.

Want more? Browse our extensive list of Neoserra FAQs.