How To: importing contacts and companies

Adding contacts and companies via import

You can easily add an existing list of contacts or companies in Teamleader. This way, you do not need to enter each contact manually. When you go to the contact page or company page, you will see the button 'Import' on the right hand side. When you click it, a pop-up appears giving you several options for importing contacts and companies in Teamleader.

Importing data

You will see a grey field with a button for choosing a file next to it. You have two options: either you copy an existing list from Excel or another spreadsheet program and paste it into this grey field, or you can directly upload an Excel file. This can be done with the extensions XLS, XLSX and CSV.

If you prefer to simply copy/paste data, then you need to ensure each record (each entry) is on a different line. If you copy from an Excel file, then normally this will cause no problems.


When importing you need to take following limits into account: 

When copy pasting your text directly into the grey field, you are limited to a maximum of 5 million characters. If you choose to upload a file, then the file can not be larger than 5 MB. In any case, your file must not contain more than 35,000 rows and 200 columns.

If you decide to upload a file, you need to take a number of points into account:

• You can indicate a person’s gender in the following ways: for men: "M", "MAN", "MALE", for women: "W","WOMAN", "F", "FEMALE". When a different value is used, the gender is set at unknown.

• All date fields must be entered in the following format: YYYY-MM-DD or DD/MM/YYYY.

• You can include tags in 1 field. Different tags must be separated by a comma (,). Similarly for custom fields of the type "Fixed options with several possibilities". Tags and options are created automatically during the import, so you do not have to enter these in advance.

For the next 3 fields you can indicate the standard value when importing your file. These fields can be omitted from your file if they are always the same (if for example you have only companies from Belgium in your database). If your file contains incorrect values, you will get an error message.

• You can enter countries using their name, or according to the 2-letter ISO 3166-1 standard. If a country cannot be recognised, the system will indicate this in a message.

• You can import languages using the 2-letter ISO 639-1 codes (NL, EN, FR, DE…). They can also be imported using their name in English (Dutch, English, French, German…).

• You can enter the account managers for companies. This has to be an existing coworker in Teamleader. Only the 'real name' that is entered on the employees’ page is accepted as a value. If the account manager cannot be found, the default account manager will be selected.

Last name/first name

Files are often imported with the first name and last name contained in the same field. In Teamleader however, these fields are separated. If this is the case, select either First name + Last name or Last name + First name (depending on the order in your file) in the field selector (see image). The fields are then automatically separated.

Street + House number

A similar situation applies to the address fields: often the street and the house number are contained in one field in the file. The field is correctly separated automatically and entered into the 2 respective columns in Teamleader.

Besides normal addresses you can also import other addresses such as a delivery address and invoicing address.

VAT liability

When entering the VAT liability, you can use the following abbreviations:
• BE: Belgian VAT liability
• EU_IC: Intra-Community VAT liability
• EU_EC: VAT liability outside the EU
• MC: Contracting partner
• PARTIC: Private person
• NO_VAT: Not liable for VAT

Payment term

When entering the payment term you can choose between the following values:

CONT/CONTANT/0D: payment term cash (0 days)

Default payment terms:
7, 21, 30, 7D, 21D, 30D… : normal payment term

Flexible payment terms:

If you use custom payment terms, you can upload these as well. They will be kept as a preference for your customer.
You can also create custom payment terms within Teamleader.

End of month:

30DEM: 30 days after the end of the month (identical for 60DEM and 90DEM)


Sectors can only be entered for companies by using the triple letter codes that are used by Trends: List of codes. However, you can create a custom field and import your own sectors as such.

Background information

If you want to add extra information about a contact or company, you can also add this to a column in your CSV file. The information in this column will be added to the default field "Background information" in Teamleader.

Custom fields

At present custom fields can be created immediately when importing. We do not recommend doing this because you cannot choose which type of custom field it will be: the field will always be regarded as a text field. Frequently this is not intentional, because for example the field contains several options. We recommend you create the necessary custom fields under "Settings" first, and then select those when importing. Custom fields of the "Yes/No" type must be imported as value 0 (no) or 1 (yes).

General information about the import

Customers often have a single file containing both contacts and companies. Teamleader has been devised to cope with this. The following options are possible:

1. When importing contacts you can enter fields for up to 3 companies where this contact works, in addition to the fields of contacts. If your contacts are linked to companies via a key, this is also possible with the import tool. First you import the companies, and then enter the key in a custom field. Afterwards when importing the contacts, you choose that custom field under the category 'Fields to match with companies'.

2. When importing companies, you have the following possibilities:
• You can add up to 3 contacts working at this company
• You can add 1 related company. This can also be used to create different branches of a company (as a separate company)

Several contacts/companies with the same name?

Does your file contain contacts or companies with the same name? Teamleader automatically detects this when you click on the button "Continue import' and gives you 2 options for merging:

All of the following fields must be the same: if you choose one of these options the contacts/companies will be merged only if these fields are the same. For instance, if you choose the option "Name, Zip Code", only companies that have the same name and the same zip code will be regarded as the same and will therefore be merged.

At least one of the following fields must be the same: one of these options is generally chosen if the file contains a lot of real double entries. In this contacts/companies are merged if at least 1 of the chosen fields matches. If you choose, for example, "Email or Name" companies are merged if they have the same name or the same email address.

After you have chosen a criterion for merging companies or contacts, you can click again on the button "Continue import", Teamleader will then calculate how many contacts and companies will be added or modified. You can also change your criterion and try again. This way you can immediately see the influence of the chosen criterion.

Has something gone wrong?

Has something gone wrong? After an import, an extra widget appears at the bottom right corner of the associated overview page, where you can approve or undo the import. This widget will only disappear when you have approved the import. Please note: Undoing an import will only remove contacts and companies that have been added. Modifications to existing contacts or companies cannot be undone!


Here you can find two examples of how an Excel file is drawn up:



You can also manually add a contact or a company to Teamleader. In order to find out how, you should check out our tutorials:

This article was helpful for 68 people. Is this article helpful for you?