1. Import and export data
  2. Get started with imports

You can import lists and data to your model from spreadsheets, databases, or other accounting and reporting systems. You can also import data from one Anaplan model into another.

Import actions are performed using flat files in any of these formats:

  • tab separated,
  • comma separated (.csv),
  • semi-colon (;) separated, or
  • pipe (|) separated.

Note: If you're an end user, ensure your administrator has assigned you the appropriate roles and access permissions. To import into a list via an action, you need permission to access both the list and the action.

Workspace administrators can run imports faster than end users where access restrictions apply. If you're a workspace administrator, consider selective access or dynamic cell access when you set up data imports.

If you're an end user, you can run imports from a dashboard via a context menu item or a button configured for you by an administrator. Learn how to import data as an end user.

Additional configuarion options are available for production administrators with Application Lifecycle Management. Learn more about Production Imports.

For details of the different kinds of import, with examples and instructional videos, see:

When you import into modules, you can exploit various options to control how existing items in the target will be updated with respect to the source items that will be mapped in. For details of the options available for clearing the target before mapping, see Clear the Target.

You can also use other mapping options to control how the timescale in the source is mapped into the target. For details see Map the Timescale.

This introductory topic provides some key points and examples as background information to prepare you for using the Anaplan import feature to populate and update your models:

Check import file formats

Before you attempt to import data into Anaplan, make sure you have your files or data in the correct format:

  • Double-byte characters are not supported. Replace these characters before uploading files.
  • Carriage return and line feed characters are supported, but any text string containing one or more of these characters must be delimited by double quotes.
  • If you are importing dates, an upper date limit of 31st December 2399 is imposed. If any date values in the import source are past that date, the import gives errors for those values and they are not imported. Other data will be imported as normal.

Import from Text Files, .txt, .csv, tab separated or flat files

If importing from a spreadsheet, first save as a .txt file (on the File menu point to Save As then click Text (Tab delimited)). You can only import one sheet at a time from spreadsheets. Virtually all databases, accounting, and reporting systems will have the facility to produce any selection you want and save it as a text file.

Accelerate the upload using zipped files

Anaplan can read a zipped file (file with .zip extension), which can dramatically improve the upload speed.

The program will automatically unzip the file on the Anaplan server. Browse for the .zip file (instead of the .txt or .csv file) and upload.

Make sure the .zip file contains exactly one (1) file. Anaplan does not support multiple files inside a zip for import.

The speed of the upload depends on your connection speed. The more the file is compressed by zipping it, the less data there is to transfer. A 1 Mbps (megabits per second) connection will upload at 60/8 = 7.5 MBytes per minute.

Multiple column files are quicker to load than single column files because there is less repetition of the labels, so the files are smaller.

Change the number format for imports

When importing from an external source, such as a text file, a number can be ambiguous depending on the thousand separator and the decimal separator.

For example 1,234 means one thousand two hundred and thirty four in the UK and US, but one point two three four in France. The interpretation of the number can be controlled by each user individually because it's dependent on the language setting in each browser.

To change the language setting for your browser, go to Preferences or Settings. If you're not sure check the browser help.

Import from another Anaplan model

You can import lists or data from another Anaplan model that:

  • Belongs to the Workspace where you are currently working.
  • Belongs to another Workspace in the same customer environment and to which you have access.

See Import from Another Anaplan Model to find out more.

Import from a button on a dashboard

From a button on a dashboard, end users can choose files to execute a process or an import (you don't have to be a Workspace Administrator to do this). It's a flexible way to import data from an external data source into a list or module to save time and improve workflow. See the End user file import from a dashboard page to learn more.


We may update our documentation occasionally, but will only do so in a way that does not negatively affect the features and functionality of the Anaplan service.