Aristotle Support

Updating Voter Records from a Voter File

Article ID: 809
Last updated: 07 Mar, 2010

Updating Voter Records from a Voter File


Let’s talk about the days leading up to the election! As the big day approaches, you may want to improve your targeting by updating your VoterManager database with information from the registrar of voters. Most of time, you will receive voter files many times before the election day.


So, how do you update your voter record

Use the import tool!


It’s free. There is no charge to use the import tool no matter how many times you upload.


You can update your VoterManager database immediately. Importing through VoterManager gives you the ability to immediately update the information in the database to reflect the voter file using codes, include updating who requested an absentee ballot or who has already voted.


When you receive your first file from the registrar, we recommend that you attempt to update your record as soon as you receive it. Some registrars have files that do not have Voter ID numbers/Affidavits or do not otherwise work with our standard import tool. If this is the case, contact us ASAP so that we can address the problem immediately. The good news is that if your file doesn’t work, we can build a custom tool to help you upload it in the future.


The following steps will walk you through the process of adding a code to a set of Voter ID or Affidavits:


Lesson 1: Add a Code to VoterManager

Lesson 2: Defining your spreadsheet

Lesson 3: How to convert a spreadsheet into a .csv file

Lesson 4: Importing the file into the database


In order to use the Data Import Tool, you must have the administrator access permission level.


Lesson 1: Add a Code to VoterManager


You will need to add a code to VoterManager that represents what you are updating. For instance, if you are updating the absentee ballot request, your code will need to reflect that. If the code already exists for your update, you can skip this step. 


To add a Code:

  1. From the Management menu, select Codes.

  2. Click on the Add Code button. (NOT the Add Code Type button).

  3. The Add Code pop-up window will prompt you for a code of up to 4 characters and a full-length description for what that code represents.

If you use Code Types (see below), you may assign the new Code to a Code Type by selecting a type from the drop-down menu.  If you do not wish to assign a Code Type, you may leave the field blank. 

  1. Click the Add button. 

  2. You may click the Close button once you have seen the confirmation: The update was successful.  The Code Manager page will refresh, and the Codes list will reflect your addition.


Now that our code exists, we will want to import the Voter IDs or Affidavits that need to be updated.


Lesson 2: Defining your spreadsheet


In most cases, you will have an existing spreadsheet from your registrar. From that list, remove any voters that you do not wish to code with a single code. For instance, if you are updating your voters with a code for anyone who has requested an abstentee ballot, remove anyone on the list that does not fit this criteria. Your final list should contain one column of Voter IDs or Affidavits. If your final list in not a single column, it may cause the update to run much slower or time out. Since additional information (like name and address) will not be updated , do not include it in the file.


Ok, now that we have defined our spreadsheet, let’s convert it to a .csv file!


Lesson 3: How to convert a spreadsheet into a .csv file


If your file is already a .csv, you can skip this step.


If your spreadsheet is in an Excel format, you will need to convert it into a .csv file before uploading.


1.       Open your excel file.

2.       Click on File and Save as.

3.       Select where you would like to save the file (like your desktop or a drive – remember where you saved it!).

4.       In the File Name area, name your document.

5.       In the Save as Type area, select CSV(Comma Delimited) from the pull down menu.

6.       Click Save. Remember where you saved this file. You will need it in the next lesson!

7.       You may receive one or two warning about the formatting of .csv, click yes.


The file is now a .csv, let’s import it into our database!


Lesson 4: Importing the file into the database


1.       From your VoterManager database, click on the Management menu.

2.       Click on Imports.

3.       Next to File, click on Browse.

4.       Find where you saved your file (from step three) and click on that icon and click the Open button.

5.       Select VoterID as your Layout if your file consists of VoterIDs. Select Affidavits as your Layout if your file consists of Affidavits numbers.  

6.       Click the Upload button.


You should get a message that your upload was successful. Do a common sense check. Review a couple of the entries from your spreadsheet with the database to make sure everything was transferred correctly.


Importing through VoterManager is the fastest way to put the newest information into your database. Keeps in mind when you import this tool can not update addresses or add records into your database. If you have trouble importing or if your voter file does not work with this format, let us know so we can custom design a tool to work for you. 

This article was:   Helpful | Not helpful
Report an issue
Article ID: 809
Last updated: 07 Mar, 2010
Revision: 1
Views: 492