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Version 2.0 - How to Upload and Create a Custom List

Sometimes, school administrators may want to communicate with individuals that do not reside within their PowerSchool application. For example, lunch staff members or bus drivers.

By following these simple steps, you will be able to add a custom contact list to Alert Solutions so users can send email, voice and text alerts to that particular group.

Start by clicking the dropdown arrow next to the school name, then select Import Data.

Click ‘Create New Import Map’ at the top of the screen.

Then, select your list (a .CSV Excel file) to upload from your computer by clicking ‘Choose File’. When you are done, click OK.

Tip! You need to have a Unique ID for each record. For example, if you are uploading a list of bus drivers, you can use BUS-1, BUS-2, etc.. Also, each field in your contact list needs to be in a separate column. Here is a sample:

Next, complete the following steps:

1. Match the fields from your list (Import Field Name) to the fields in Alert Solutions (Friendly Field Name).

Note: If you cannot find a Friendly Field Name in Alert Solutions that matches your list, please contact Customer Support at (800) 929-1643 for assistance.

2. Select ‘Type’ for each field (Type: Describes the type of content in the field. (Ex: text/numeric))

3. Complete the check boxes accordingly:

Editable: Checking this box enables parents to edit this field within the Parent Portal.

Hidden: Checking this box prevents parents from seeing this field within the Parent Portal.

Required: Checking this box requires parents to complete this field within the Parent Portal.

For contact fields that are phone numbers, you have the option to opt-in to these fields as phone numbers that can receive Voice and/or SMS messages by checking the appropriate box.

Tip! ID should be a field that is always required!

Once you are satisfied with your field mapping, you can ‘Name this import map’ at the top of your screen and click ‘Save’.

After you click ‘Save’, you will be taken back to the Maps screen. Find your new Map Name on the list and click ‘Import’.

Again you will need to select your list (a .CSV Excel file) to upload from your computer by clicking ‘Choose File’.  

You will also notice that this screen can be used for any mass updating of custom import lists and maps by choosing 'Clear existing subscribers for this import map and replace', or 'Edit existing subscribers'. 

When you are done, click 'Import File'.

Once you click ‘OK’, please refresh your screen. The Status of the import should change from ‘New’ to ‘Complete’.


Tip! If the status changes to ‘Error’ you can download the ‘Error Files’ to see what errors were found in the list. Correct the errors in your original file and re-upload your list by following the steps above.


Create Your List

Once your import is complete, you need to create a list. Click ‘Contacts’ in the top navigation menu, followed by ‘Create New List’.

Complete the following fields:

List Name: A friendly name for your list (Example: Bus Drivers List)

IVR Code: The IVR Code is the number you will use to select your list when creating a voice message using the IVR system.

Then, filter your subscribers to find the new contacts you have added.

Tip! Since ID is always unique, your first filter (Choose Field) should be ‘ID’ and your second filter (Choose Operator) should be ‘Starts With’.  Example: “NEWBUS-“.

Once your subscriber count matches the total number of contacts you added, click ‘Save’.


How to Confirm Your List is Ready to Use

To confirm your list is ready to use, click on ‘Create New Message’ from the top navigation menu, and check the box next to the list you just created. Once the box is checked, click ‘Finish’.

You will be taken back to the Send New Message screen where you should see recipient totals under each communication channel.

If your recipients are available, you have successfully created your custom list!

For assistance in updating your custom list, please refer to the following article.

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