There are three main ways of importing data to OpenBOM: from spreadsheets, using integrations or through REST APIs. In this article, you’ll learn how to get your spreadsheet’s data into OpenBOM.
OpenBOM has a variety of features to help you import a spreadsheet to an OpenBOM BOM or Catalog. This section will take you through:
The process for importing a BOM or Catalog is almost identical. A small amount of preparation can greatly improve this experience. Fortunately, OpenBOM can process either a formatted or unformatted spreadsheet.
From the OpenBOM Dashboard, click the “Create” button and select “Import BOM” (or “Import Catalog”) from the drop-down menu.
Select your spreadsheet file as shown below by selecting your source file form: Excel or Google Drive.
For a formatted spreadsheet, the defaults below will work:
Once the dialog is complete – Click “Import” and your BOM or Catalog will be created. Finished!
Note: Dashboard imports using the Create Button -> Import Catalog operation will always create a new catalog. If you import an excel named “Hadware.xls” you will get a new OpenBOM catalog called “Hardware.xls”. Later if you import another (different or the same) excel named “Hardware.xls” you will get an OpenBOM catalog called “Hardware.xls-1” (note the “-1”).
Here’s a quick video that walks you through the process.
Once you have created a new BOM or Catalog from an existing spreadsheet you may have a need to update the original spreadsheet (for example, if it is the output from an ERP system or likewise). Of course, you will also want these changes to the original spreadsheet to be reflected in your OpenBOM BOM or Catalog.
The update process involves re-importing the revised spreadsheet into OpenBOM. The rules of the import is different for BOMs and Catalogs.
1- Importing Excel (or Spreadsheet) into existing BOM.
When you import data into existing BOM, OpenBOM will attempt to “sync” data between Excel and BOM in OpenBOM. Which means the following rules: (1)- All new items from Excel will be added; (2)- All existing items from Excel will be updated; (3)- If the item, doesn’t exist in Excel, it will be deleted from the BOM. The “sync” nature keeps BOM in synch with external data source.
2- Importing Excel (or Spreadsheet) into existing Catalog.
It is important to understand exactly what Merging does for Catalog(s). OpenBOM applies the following rules to determine what to do with data during the merge:
The button for importing into existing BOM is here:
Please note that there is a difference between re-importing a spreadsheet to a catalog than to a BOM. If you are re-importing a spreadsheet to a catalog, OpenBOM will read the spreadsheet and “append” the data from the spreadsheet to the existing catalog. This means that OpenBOM will NOT DELETE any existing items in the catalog.
On the other hand, for BOMs, OpenBOM will remember what was imported before and will try to DELETE data from your catalog or BOM if data doesn’t exist in Excel. The best approach in this case is to export the data to Excel if you want to import it again and you’re afraid that data is not in sync.
Here is a short video on merging changes from an existing spreadsheet into an existing OpenBOM catalog.
If OpenBOM encounters any formatting issues the following message will be displayed. In this example below, our input spreadsheet header was on row 6 and our part number property is named “PN”.
Correct the values for property row or part number name as needed and try again:
OpenBOM supports the import of a multi level BOM spreadsheet as long as the spreadsheet has the following conditions:
Example of a spreadsheet which will create a multi level BOM on Import: