This article shows you how to keep card data synchronized between Placker and an external system by using the card title to synchronize the data. 

In this case we synchronize custom fields in Trello to custom attributes in Placker but you can use this method for any system that supports exporting data. Advanced knowledge of excel is required to use this approach.

We will use the following Placker features:

  1. Custom attributes, to define additional attributes in Placker, in this case we will create an Placker custom attribute for every custom field attribute we would like to import.
  2. Placker import/export, to synchronize the data in Placker with the data that was exported from the source system (this case Trello).

Step 1; Setup the target board in Placker, and prepare the export.

  1. Import your board in Placker, or create a new board in Placker. (we will call this the Placker board in this article).
  2. Export the data from the source board to a format that can be read in excel, like csv. Be sure to include the card title and the relevant attributes in the excel.

Now you have the Placker board that will be used to synchronized the data from the exported document.

Step 2: Create custom attributes in Placker

To make sure each attribute is available to be imported, check all of the attributes you like to import;

  1. If this attribute can be matched with an attribute that is already in Placker like start date, duration, status etc, you don't have to do anything as you can import this value without any action.
  2. If this attribute is not yet in Placker, create a custom attribute in Placker on the Placker board. See this article on how to do this: https://help.placker.com/board-in-depth/creating-custom-attributes-in-placker

You can always get back to this step and create a custom attribute when you discover an attribute is missing during the import.

Step 3: Export the card data from Placker

Now, make an export of the card data and the relevant attributes from Placker from the export page on https://placker.com/app#/export

Click on download to open the excel.

Step 4: Match attributes based on the card title

Please note that in case the external system has its own id (like an unique number), you can also use this identifier to synchronize the data. In this example we match the data by using the card data.

You can also copy the excel template from here

In order to retrieve the attributes values based on the card title, we will create a lookup table in Trello and then map the attribute values from the source data to the Placker data.

First prepare the source data:

  1. Open the excel from Placker, and do the following:
  2. Add the source data in a second tab, add a name to this data 'source_data' so we can use this to lookup the attributes values later.
  3. Add two rows on top of the placker exported data and the source data, and number the source data columns.

Now map the source attribute to the placker import:

  1. Copy the columns that should be mapped from the source tab to the Placker export data (the first tab).
  2. Add a lookup formula to the attribute value cells that will find the attribute values based on the card data. 

The formula works like this; Take the card title ($D4), and then do a VLOOKUP in the source_data table to find the card data, then select the value from the column number that is set in E$1.

The formula is extended to avoid 0 values and cases where the card title is not found.

=IFNA(IF(VLOOKUP($D4;source_data;E$1;FALSE <>0; VLOOKUP( $D4; source_data; E$1; FALSE);"");"")

You can check the excel structure and the formula in the excel template from here

Step 5: Synchronize your data into Placker

Now you can simply copy the table from the excel and past it into the text area on the import page on https://placker.com/app#/import

Make sure that the target board is set to the correct board, and click on "process data" to process the data and go to the next step.

In step 3, check to make sure that the columns are mapped to the right attribute in Placker, when this is correct, click "Process mapping".

In step 4, check to confirm that the detected updates match your expectations, are the number of cards to be created, updated as you expected? If so click "Start import" to process the import.

And you are done, the attributes are now set in Placker!

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