Learn MagicTools – for PI

Contact us at Believable Magic if you have questions not answered by the learning content below.

MagicTools is a product of Believable Magic, not of The Predictive Index™ (PI). Please contact PI only if you need help activating API Access or obtaining an API Key for your PI account.  

Installation

  1. Download the installer – When your organization purchased MagicTools, the buyer was shown a download link at check-out. Follow that link and download the MagicToolsforPISetup.exe.
    • If your organization is licensed already, you may obtain the installer from a co-worker who already downloaded it. Any authorized users who manage your organization’s PI data may install MagicTools.
    • If you need to re-locate the download link, log into the My Account page and visit the Downloads sub-page where you will find a download link.
    • You can recover your password if you forgot it (or you never knew you had a password).
  2. Grant permission – Your browser may alert you to the fact that you are downloading an executable program that can make changes to your system. This is normal — you are making a change! You may need to click on options such as “Keep” or “Allow” before your browser will complete the download.
  3. Run the installer – locate the MagicToolsforPISetup.exe file in the location you downloaded it and activate it (click or double-click on it).
  4. Antivirus warnings – You might see an error or warning pop up if you have certain antivirus programs running. For example, Avast is known to pop up a “ShellExecuteEx failed” message which is a false alarm. Usually, this type of error goes away after a few seconds and the installer begins to run.
  5. Windows Defender warnings – You may see security warnings from Windows or Windows Defender letting you know the software is from an unrecognized source. Even though our installer is signed using an industry-standard code signing certificate issued to Believable Magic by USERTrust RSA Certification Authority, this warning will appear until enough people have installed it and it is recognized as safe. The warning looks like this:

    Click on the “More info” link, and you will see this:

    Click on “Run anyway”. 
  6. Grant Permission – Windows will ask if you really want to install the program and you should allow it.
  7. Follow Setup Steps – you will see this setup window:

    Review the agreement, click “I accept the agreement”, and click Next.
    After continuing through a few more setup screens, you will arrive here:

    Click “Finish” and the setup window will disappear.
  8. Launch “MagicTools – for PI” – click the Windows menu and you should see it at the top of the list, like this:

    If you don’t see it at the top of the list, scroll down to the “M” section, or start typing “MagicTools” and you should see it. 

Setup Tab

Every time the MagicTools – for PI software is launched, it checks whether the Setup tab contains all the things needed to run. If it finds anything missing, the Setup tab will display first.

After you’ve provided everything in the Setup tab, the next time you start MagicTools it will display the Clean or whatever tab you were using last time.

MagicTools License Key

You will need to obtain a MagicTools™ License Key and store it in the provided setting box in order to use the MagicTools software. Your organization only needs one currently active License Key and it may be used by any authorized users to manage your organization’s PI data. (see End User License Agreement)

License Keys look like this: 1A3B-C3D5-3E5F-4A6B 

You should have received a License Key in the order confirmation email sent to you by Believable Magic after you paid for a software license. 

If your organization purchased a software license but can’t find your License Key:

  1. The registered owner of the License Key must visit the My Account page and log in. You can recover your password if you forgot it (or you never knew you had a password).
  2. Click on Orders or recent orders
  3. Find your most recent order for MagicTools – for PI and click View
  4. Your License Key will be displayed to you

Copy and paste your License Key into the Setup tab where it says MagicTools™ License Key and click Validate. This will make a call to the believablemagic.com site to verify that your License Key is currently active. The outcome will be displayed below the License Key along with the expiration date.

  • If your License Key has expired, your organization will need to purchase a new License Key or work through your license administrator to extend the expiration date of your existing License Key. MagicTools will not function with an expired License Key.
  • If for some reason the believablemagic.com site is unavailable to check whether your License Key is active, MagicTools will still work for you — assuming the problem is with the License checking process and not with your Internet connection.

Predictive Index Settings

API Key

You will need to obtain a Predictive Index API Key and put it into the provided setting box in order to use MagicTools to read any of your PI data and/or make any changes to it.

API Keys look like this: 20078DE4-562E-4CEC-B3C9-B314E15438DA

You can obtain one by following these steps:

  1. Activate API Access to PI – Contact Predictive Index Support and ask them “Please ensure that API Access is turned on for our PI Account”. If your account does not have API Access turned on, any API Key you generate will not work.
  2. Choose or Create a PI User to Own the API Key – Keep in mind that you can only do with MagicTools as much as the PI user who owns the API Key is authorized to do. When deciding which User should own the API Key you’ll use with MagicTools, consider the following:
    1. It may be best to use your own User account to generate your API Key if you want all actions you take with MagicTools to be attributed to you. You won’t be able to tell the difference between actions you take while logged in directly to PI and those taken through MagicTools.
    2. It may be best to create a new User that you intend to use only with MagicTools so that you can tell the difference between actions you take while signed into the PI software directly and those taken via the PI API and MagicTools. For example, you might use “MagicTools” as the last name or Job Title for the user.
    3. If the API Key belongs to an Account Owner or Account Admin user, MagicTools will have access to read and change all person and assessment data in your PI instance.
    4. If the API Key belongs to a Power User, User, or Read-Only user who has access to only some of the person and assessment data, MagicTools will only be able to read or modify the permission-controlled set of person and assessment data available to that user.
  3. Generate an API Key for that User – Follow the instructions in the following PI Support site to generate your own API Key from within the PI Software’s Administration > User Management area: How to Generate an API Key
Using Cognitive Assessments

If your organization is using the PI Cognitive Assessment, be sure this box is checked. When checked, MagicTools will try to respect any Cognitive Assessment data when deciding whether Person data can be archived as part of the Clean processes.

If your organization is not using the PI Cognitive Assessment, be sure to un-check this box. Doing so will simplify the logic used by MagicTools and shorten the amount of time it takes to perform Clean tasks.

Processing Output Location

Select a folder into which you want MagicTools to place output files generated by any process you might run. For example, you might choose a sub-folder within your Documents or your Downloads folder.

In the case of Clean and Sync actions, log files containing all the proposed actions or actual actions are stored in this folder.

In the case of Export actions, your exported files will be placed into this folder.

Open Output Location – this link will open your selected Output Location in a system file explorer window so you can easily find the files you have generated during processing.

User Settings Location

This display-only information tells you where MagicTools is storing the settings you enter or select. These settings are stored in a file named “user.config”.

  • If you remove or modify the user.config file, it will affect the saved settings of MagicTools.
  • If you damage this file or it becomes unusable, you can safely delete it.
  • If you delete your user.config file, you will simply have to repeat the Setup steps to store your License Key and API Key. MagicTools will create a new user.config file if one doesn’t already exist.

Open Settings Location – this link will open the folder containing your user.config file in a system file explorer window in case you wish to view, edit, or remove your saved settings for some reason. 

General Notes

Internet Required

MagicTools does all of its work over the Internet by connecting to the PI API, so if your computer doesn’t have an Internet connection, none of its functions will work until you are reconnected.

Test Mode vs. Live Mode

When MagicTools is processing any action intended to change or archive data, two modes are available: Test and Live.

  • In Test Mode, all read-only API calls are made to search for, match, and evaluate which changes should be made, but NO changes are actually made to any data. The files generated will contain all the predicted outcomes (what would have been changed, what would have been archived).
    • You may safely throw away any Test Mode files that you don’t wish to keep because they do not represent real changes.
  • In Live Mode, the data is both read and changed according to the action selected. There is NO “undo” available. Changes made in Live Mode are permanent (unless the PI Support team is able to recover data lost as a result of not following the Best Practice below). 
    • The log files generated will contain all the actual changes that were made to your PI data.
    • You should keep these files as a record of what was changed just in case you need to identify some data item that should not have been archived or changed. MagicTools cannot “undo” any changes made to your actual PI data. The Predictive Index Support team may be able to recover archived data — a process made much easier if you know exactly what they should look for, so keep for a while the files created in Live mode. The process of restoring accidentally archived data is painstaking, so test thoroughly before making only changes you intend to keep.
Best Practice: Test and Analyze First!

Before you perform the VERY POWERFUL actions on the Clean and Sync tabs using your real “Live” data, it is critically important that you:

  1. Run your intended process in Test Mode
  2. Carefully review the processing output report to verify that the right changes are being proposed.
    1. The output reports are generated as comma-separated text files which means that you should be able to view them in a spreadsheet app like Excel or Google Sheets.
    2. This review may involve viewing the individual Persons or Assessments in the PI Software. For this reason, web links to the affected PI Person within the PI software are included in the processing output file.
    3. Satisfy yourself that all the changes to your data are correct and that you are willing to archive the data in the Test Mode logs.
  3. Switch to Live Mode and run the process again.
    1. Note: It usually takes much longer to run in Live Mode.

Stopping a Process

MagicTools does not currently include a feature or button that allows you to stop a process you’ve started before it completes. However, if you change your mind and wish to stop a process, it is “safe” to simply exit the MagicTools software using the X button in the corner of the window at any time, even in the middle of a Live Mode Clean or Sync process.

  • The process logs that are recording changes should contain a list of changes actually made at the moment you exited MagicTools.
  • All Clean and Sync actions are performed as a series of single changes, so stopping the program in the middle of a process will simply abandon any unattempted changes.
  • If you re-run a process that you previously stopped in the middle, the software will perform a fresh analysis of the data at that time and then make any appropriate changes.

Clean Process Tab

Problem: It is common for any data system, and particularly for assessment systems, to accumulate old, unwanted data over time:

  • Incomplete/expired assessments from invitations never acted upon
  • Multiple complete assessments for the same person
  • Duplicate person data representing the same human

All of these unwanted PI persons and assessments make it harder for your users to find good data. 

Solution: MagicTools Clean aims to reduce this clutter by performing two types of cleaning:

  1. Remove Expired Assessments and any Persons who only had an expired assessment
  2. Completed Behavioral Assessments – keep on only the oldest completed assessment and archive all others, removing any Persons no longer needed.

Both of these processes use the same configuration settings:

  • Choose which Person Types should be processed (e.g. Candidate, Employee, etc)
  • Choose whether to filter the exported data by assessment (Behavioral, Cognitive) and assessment state (Completed, Expired, etc)
  • Decide whether to process your data in alphabetical order or reverse alphabetical order. This option was created to work around the 100,000 record limit that normally makes it impossible to find any records beyond the limit. By choosing to process first in alphabetical and then a second time in reverse alphabetical order, the process can reach a data set twice as large, up to 200,000 records in two separate passes.

Expired Behavioral Assessments

This process locates any Behavioral Assessment (BA) that has reached the Expired state. This state is assigned when the expiration date for that assessment has been passed. The expiration date is calculated at the time the assessment was ordered by using the company-wide expiration period setting (a number of days).

This Clean process looks for:

  • any Expired BA assessment
  • for persons of the chosen Person Type
  • that were created more than the selected number of days ago

It archives one expired assessment at a time, then checks whether the Person has any assessment data remaining after archiving it. If the Person has no remaining useful assessment data, the Person is archived also (if the setting is selected to do so).

When NOT to Archive Expired Assessments
  • Still Recent and Relevant – If a BA has recently expired, it may relate to a person that is very much interested and involved in the recruiting cycle or another ongoing business purpose. The presence of an Expired assessment is important information relating to some ongoing processes and outcomes. Archiving an assessment too soon after it has expired may create a confusing situation where data seems to be disappearing. 
  • Managed by an Automated Integration – An Expired BA can be “re-sent” through features available to a system-to-system integration that uses the Predictive Index API. If you are using such an automated integration, it may be advisable to let your automated integration perform any follow-up on Expired assessments for a period of time. If your automated integration is using the assessmentStatusWebHook feature, that value is not re-used with or copied into subsequent assessments sent for the same person. Keeping and re-using the original assessment is important when relying on an automated integration to follow up on expired assessments. Archiving an assessment using MagicTools puts all of the data linked to that original assessment out of reach of your automated integration.

Note on Re-sending Assessments: Even though the PI software offers the ability to re-send an Expired assessment, such expired assessments are not really used again — this action creates a new assessment and archives the original. This function is normal and acceptable if you do not use an automated integration that relies on the assessmentStatusWebHook property. If you use no automated integration, archiving expired assessments and persons on a timeline you have chosen only affects the users who log in and view the data.

Best Practice: Archive Only Older Expired Assessments

For the reasons above, the “older than X days” setting is made available so that you can ignore recently Expired assessments and only clean up the older ones that are not recent or relevant. It is wise to start with a larger span of days such as 365 or 180, and then as your processes tighten up and you are confident in doing so, you might run it again with a smaller span of days such as 90 or 60.

Completed BAs – Keep the Oldest

Research offered by the PI Science team has shown that the first/oldest Behavioral Assessment a person takes is usually the most accurate. 

Problem: Some administrative practices surrounding the BA can lead a candidate or an employee to take and re-take the BA several times over the course of time. An automated integration may not have been designed to avoid duplicates, or the Invite by Link feature of the PI Software may have been used without realizing that duplicated persons and BAs are being created. This can make quite a mess when a person may have many BAs present in your PI data.

Solution: Find all the data for a given person, and remove all the BAs except for the oldest. This is what MagicTools does for you, with a few qualifying considerations. The most reliable method available for identifying multiple PI Persons describing the same human person is to use an email address as the unique identifier. While this may not be perfect due in part to the practice of job applicants using multiple email addresses, it goes a long way to remove known-duplicated data while avoiding making incorrect conclusions using less dependable data such as name. After choosing one BA to keep and the Person associated with it, other additional BAs are archived. If there are any PI Persons left without any remaining assessment data, the Person can be optionally removed as well by checking the box shown in MagicTools.

Considering Cognitive Assessments: If you are using Cognitive Assessments, it is not enough for the cleaning process to examine only the existence of BA data before deciding to archive a Person whose BA assessments have been archived. It is important to keep any Person who has a Cognitive Assessment, even if that Person’s data represents some degree of duplication. The PI platform has no method available to merge Persons, so duplication may be unavoidable if the BA data for a particular human is associated with one PI Person and the Cognitive data is associated with another PI Person for that same human.

Export Process Tab

MagicTools Export gives you a way to dump out your PI people and assessment data so you can use it for a variety of other purposes:

  • Analyze your PI data to learn new things
  • Combine PI assessment data with other sources to make new connections
  • See all your PI person data so you can then use the MagicTools Clean process to remove unwanted data or the Sync process to fix it

Persons and their Assessment data to CSV

Problem: You wish to periodically use PI data in an external system for further analysis, correlation, learning, or reporting, but PI offers reports that may or may not answer the questions on your mind.

Solution: The Export Persons and their Assessment data to CSV option offers the ability to dump into a text file all the person and assessment data you have chosen through the available Selection Criteria. Optionally, you may wish to include Behavioral Assessment Self-Concept and Synthesis individual factor scores though this option takes significantly more time.

Persons with only the data needed for Sync process input

Problem: You wish to update your PI Person data using the MagicTools Sync process (described in the next main section below) but you need to start with the current PI Person data, fix some of it, and then load it back into PI to replace what is in there.

Solution: The Export Persons with only the data needed for Sync process input option offers the ability to dump into a text file only the Person data you can use for the Sync process input. Once you have selected criteria and exported the data, you can use any method you like, manual or automated, to update the data before re-loading it into the PI system using the Sync process. By including the PI PersonID (Assessment User ID) in the exported data, the MagicTools Sync process can match any changes made in the exported data to the exact PI Person. 

Selection Criteria

Person Type – You can select one or several Person Types to meet your own need.

Filter by Assessments

  • Which type of assessment will you use to apply the next criteria?
    • Any/All – no filter will be applied based on assessments at all, so you will get all persons.
    • Behavioral – filter on the State/Status of the BA. Only persons with a BA will be included.
    • Cognitive – filter on the State/Status of the CA. Only persons with a CA will be included.
  • Which assessment state will you use to select your output data?
    • Any/All – ignore assessment state, so include all assessments of the type chosen
    • Behavioral – three States/Statuses are available: Pending, Complete, Expired
    • Cognitive – five States/Statuses are available: Pending, Complete, Expired, Failed, Aborted

Filter by Folder Path – Enter the full folder hierarchy or “path” including the folder whose data you want to export. For example:

\Your Company Name\Eastern Division\Employees

You can learn more about folder management in the PI Support documentation.

Export Separator – select what character should be placed into the output file to separate each “column” of data from the next. Options include: comma, tab, semi-colon, and pipe (” | “).

Reports for Persons to PDF – Coming Soon

Coming Soon functionality:

  • Choose Persons through a variety of selection methods
  • Choose which reports you would like to generate for those persons
  • Reports will be named using the person’s name, the type of report, and some other optional identifiers

Sync Process Tab

MagicTools for PI will synchronize PI Person data with input from an uploaded Text or CSV (comma-separated values) file, finding the right person in PI using the PI Person ID, up to two External IDs, or up to two Email Addresses and then making updates to Name, Email, Person Type, External ID, Folder, and/or Job using new values found in the uploaded file.

There are many common problems you might be able to solve by synchronizing your PI data like this.

Common Problems Solved Using Sync

Problem 1 – Candidates Hired: People are added to your PI data during the hiring process using candidate-supplied information, but those who were subsequently hired need to be re-classified as employees and have their PI data updated with their employee info so you can take advantage of the post-hire features of PI. For example, the PI Slack App depends on matching email addresses in both PI and Slack for your team. You need to update several data items:

  • Person Type changed to Employee
  • Email updated to use their current (likely employee) address instead of their previous (likely personal) address
  • Possibly an external ID changed from a hiring system ID to an employee system ID
  • Name updates
  • PI Job/position changed to match actual hired job
  • PI Folder path changed from Candidate to Employee

To solve Problem 1, prepare a Sync input file with both the Candidate ID (Previous External ID) from the hiring software and the Employee ID (Current External ID) from your HRIS system to update, and then include all the new name, email, etc from your employee data.

Problem 2 – Org Upload Collisions: You would like to use the Organization features of PI including uploading a CSV file to PI containing your Org Structure. However, you also use a hiring integration with PI that places an ID into the externalPersonId field which is also used for Employee ID in the Org Structure data. If you upload your Org Structure without first fixing the Employee ID, new persons will be created for all those having a left-over value in that field. To keep your pre-hire PI assessment data intact, you need to assign hired candidates their new EmployeeID so it will match the Org Structure data you intend to upload.

To solve Problem 2, prepare a Sync input file with both the Candidate ID (Previous External ID) from the hiring software and the Employee ID (Current External ID) from your HRIS system to update, and then you can use Employee ID to carry out an Org Structure upload successfully.

Problem 3 – Org Upload Duplication: You would like to use the Organization features of PI including uploading a CSV file to PI containing your Org Structure. However, you have many employees already in PI without an Employee ID in their External ID field. If you use Org Data Upload, you may run into a problem with PI creating new persons for many of your existing employees, sending them an invitation for an assessment when they’ve already taken it. 

To solve Problem 3, first use the Export process to generate a Sync input file format set of data, then edit that file to include the new/correct info in the Employee ID (Current External ID) column taken from your HRIS system or other org data along with any updated email address in the Current Email column plus any other changes in the other columns. Then upload that modified file using Sync so that PI has all the right data. Then you can use these newly assigned/corrected Employee IDs in an Org Structure upload using the PI features.

Problem 4 – Former Employees Identified: People are represented as Candidates or Employees in your PI data but now they should be identified as Former Employees. 

To solve Problem 4 with an HRIS system, generate a data extraction in CSV format from your HRIS system containing all the Former Employees and at least one column used by Sync for matching (Employee ID, Work Email, Personal Email). Use the Sync process column names in place of whatever original column names were generated originally. If you wish to switch your former employees’ email addresses from work email to personal email, then be sure to use CurrentEmail column name for the personal address you want to keep and PreviousEmail column name for their old work email address. Then use the Sync process with this input file, and set the Person Type setting in the Sync view to FormerEmployee (item in the drop-down list) so that all persons found will be identified as Former Employees.

To solve Problem 4 without an HRIS system, use the Export process to generate a Sync input file with all Employees, then change the Person Type column in that file to FormerEmployee for all the right people, and finally, use the Sync process to import this updated data file.

Problem 5 – Changing Employee Data Practices: In the past, you were using PI a certain way with your employees and now you want to make a mass change in the data for all your employees. For example:

  • Everyone’s email address is changing due to a new domain name after an acquisition
  • You’re shifting from position-based email addresses to name-based addresses
  • Your PI folder structure is changing and you need to move all your employees into new PI folders at once
  • You just created new PI Jobs for many of your common positions and you want to associate many employees with these new jobs

To solve Problem 5, use the Export process to generate a file containing only the Sync input file columns of data, then use either manual data updates or an Excel VLOOKUP function to match on name, email, or another column with a goal of updating some columns with new values based on the new structure or practices you are moving toward. Then use the Sync process with this input file to fix all your PI data at once.

Person Matching Criteria

The Sync process will only perform changes if one single PI person is found to match an input person row. If one of the four possible search attempts does not find a unique person record, the input row will be skipped, the reason reported in the processing output file, and no changes will be made to that person’s data. 

To find a person, searches will be performed matching up to five data items from your input file with three PI person fields:

  • PersonID = PI Person ID
    • The PersonID field is meant to reference an identifier that is “internal” to the PI system. It cannot be changed, but only used to search for an existing PI Person. You can obtain this value in one of two ways:
      • By exporting data using MagicTools Export process (look for assessmentUserId, the internal PI name for the PersonID field)
      • By looking at the PI software web address when viewing a person’s detail page — the Person ID shows in the URL after https://app.predictiveindex.com/person/{personId}
    • The PI system enforces uniqueness in this field so there is no way that two PI persons can have the same Person ID.
    • If a match is found on this value, no more matching will be performed because it must be the right PI Person record. 
  • CurrentExternalID = PI External Person ID
    • The PI External Person ID field is meant to refer to an identifier that is “external” to the PI system and may or may not be filled in for a particular PI person. If you’ve used the Org Upload feature of PI or an automated integration, PI External Person ID likely contains an Employee ID from a Human Capital Management System or a Candidate ID from a Recruiting System.
    • The PI system enforces uniqueness in this field so there is no way to assign the same value to more than one PI person’s External Person ID.
    • If a match is found on this value, no more matching will be performed because it must be the right PI Person record. And since the person already has the correct/current External ID, no update to this field will be performed.
  • PreviousExternalID = PI External Person ID
    • If a match is found using this value, no more matching will be performed.
    • If a CurrentExternalID value is included in your input file, the PI External Person ID field will be updated to use that new/current value.
  • CurrentEmail = PI Email
    • If only one single match is found using this value, no more matching will be performed and that PI person record will be used for any updates. We can assume that the PI Email already contains the correct value.
    • If no match is found or many persons are found to match, then…
  • PreviousEmail = PI Email
    • Finally, a search is performed using the PreviousEmail which might be person’s personal email address used prior to being hired or it might be an employee’s work email address used prior to becoming a former employee
    • If only one match is found using this email address, we can assume this is the right PI person to update.
    • If no match is found or many persons are fount to match, then the person described in this input row will be skipped with no updates performed.

All persons in your input file that cannot be found using one of the methods above are marked as skipped and added to a separate Skipped Records File (see Skipped Records File below).

Person Data Upload File

Sample Upload File: MagicTools-for-PI-Sync-Person-Data-SAMPLE.csv – contains the header row and one sample data row

File Format: Text file with one line/paragraph for each person and column values separated by commas or another separator character

Separators Supported: comma, tab, semicolon, or pipe (e.g. |)

Header Row: The first line/row of the file must contain all of these column names, though the exact sequence does not matter: CurrentEmail, PreviousEmail, PersonID, CurrentExternalID, PreviousExternalID, PersonType, FirstName, MiddleName, LastName, FolderPath, JobName. See Column Header Notes below for more details and alternatives.

Data Rows: The one required column (CurrentEmail) must have a value in each row but all other columns may be empty as long as the correct number of separator characters are present so that each line/row matches the number of columns named in the first (header) line/row.

Person Data to Include: The sync process will only update PI person data items that are different from the input file data for the person found as a match. You can choose whether to include in your input file only the persons with known changes or to include all your person data regardless of any known changes. 

Note: No Removal of Data: The methods available via the PI API do not support removing a value and leaving that data element “blank” or “empty”. Therefore, it is not possible to store a blank value in the input data file and expect an existing PI value to be removed. All fields are affected by this limitation. Once any field receives a value, the API cannot be used (and therefore MagicTools – for PI cannot be used) to remove that data field. 

Special Handling for Removing a MiddleName: PI requires that every PI Person must have a value in the FirstName and LastName fields, but the MiddleName field is optional. When updating name data, the Sync process will update all three fields (First, Middle, and Last) whenever First and Last names are provided in the input file. If the MiddleName field is blank/empty in the input file, but there is a value for Middle Name in the PI data for that person, MagicTools will change the MiddleName to “.”, a period. Since there is no way to remove the MiddleName field’s content and leave it blank, but it is still desirable to remove a MiddleName that is wrong, replacing it with a period is the nearest sensible value that carries the equivalent meaning of blank. The only way to update a MiddleName field to an empty value is by logging into the PI software and manually changing the name to blank, and then saving.

Column Header Notes:

The column header names below are also accepted as valid if they contain additional spaces or use any combination of upper, lower, or mixed case (e.g. CurrentEmail = Current Email = currentemail = CURRENT EMAIL)

The sequence of columns does not matter — only the names matter to MagicTools.

PersonID – optional

  • Alternate header names: AssessmentUserID, PIPersonID, or ID
  • If provided, this will be used first to search for a match before attempting to use CurrentEmail or PreviousEmail for matching
  • If no match is found using this value, but a matching person is found using an email address, the PI External Person ID will be updated with this value

CurrentExternalID – optional

  • Alternate header names: ExternalID, EmployeeID, ExternalPersonID, PrevExtID CurrentExternalPersonID
  • If provided, this will be used second to search for a match before attempting to use CurrentEmail or PreviousEmail for matching
  • If no match is found using this value, but a matching person is found using an email address, the PI External Person ID will be updated with this value

PreviousExternalID – optional

  • Alternate header names: PreviousID, CandidateID, PreviousExternalPersonID, CurrExtID
  • If provided, this will be used third to search for a match after PersonID or CurrentExternalID and before attempting to use CurrentEmail or PreviousEmail for matching
  • If no match is found using this value, but a matching person is found using an email address, the PI External Person ID will be updated with this value

CurrentEmailREQUIRED

  • Alternate header names: NewEmail, EmployeeEmail, EmployerEmail, or WorkEmail
  • If provided, this will be used fourth to identify a match after Person ID, Current External ID, Previous External ID and before PreviousEmail are attempted
  • If a PI person is found using this email address, no change to their Email data will be made
  • If one PI person found using this value, update other fields using any valid data provided; if multiple PI persons match this value, skip this person and perform no updates

PreviousEmail – optional

  • Alternate header names: OldEmail, CandidateEmail, ApplicantEmail, or PersonalEmail
  • If provided, this will be used fifth to identify a match after Person ID, Current External ID, Previous External ID and/or CurrentEmail are attempted
  • If a unique PI person is found using this email address, change PI Email to CurrentEmail, then update other fields using any valid data provided
  • If multiple PI persons match this value, skip this person and perform no updates

PersonType – optional

  • Alternate header name: Type, Role
  • If provided, matched persons will have their Person Type data updated to the value provided unless a setting is chosen to override this column value
  • Acceptable values can be a name (exact case matters! no spaces allowed!) or the corresponding number: 
    • Unknown or 1
    • Other or 2
    • Candidate or 3
    • Employee or 4
    • FormerEmployee or 5

FirstName, MiddleName, LastName – optional

  • Alternate header names:
    • First, FN, GivenName, Given, GN
    • Middle, MN
    • Last, LN, Surname, Sur, SN
  • If both FirstName and LastName are provided in the data row for a person, all three values (including the MiddleName value, even if blank) will be used to update the matching PI person.
  • If a PI Person has an existing PI MiddleName but the input file contains a blank MiddleName, the existing name will be replaced by a period “.” because the PI API does not support setting a non-blank field to a blank.

FolderPath – optional

  • Alternate header names: Folder, or PIFolder
  • Must be a valid PI Folder path including single or double backslashes or forward slashes, like this:
    • \XYZ Company\Western Division\Employees
    • \\XYZ Company\\Western Division\\Employees
    • /XYZ Company/Western Division/Employees
    • //XYZ Company//Western Division//Employees
  • If the PI Folder path is not correct, skip this person without any updates

JobName – optional

  • Alternate header names: Job, PIJob, PRO, or JobProfile
  • Must be a valid PI Job name
  • If no PI Job with this exact name exists, skip this person without any updates

Working with the Sync Process

Sync: Step-by-Step
  1. Construct an Input File containing all the data you want to have stored in PI for the persons you’ve included, following the detailed instructions above.
  2. Save that file in a location accessible from the MagicTools software and select it using Choose Input File button.
  3. Decide which PI Person fields you want to update with the data from your input file by checking or unchecking options. If you leave all the options checked, all fields will be potentially updated. You also have the ability to set a designated Person Type or Folder Path for all the persons that match your input file records.
  4. Perform some tests using Process Now
    1. You should run in Test Mode at first, then look at the Process Log file to see if the expected changes seem to be correct. There is no “undo” if you run in Live Mode, so be sure to check your Test Mode output carefully.
    2. You can limit the number of records to process in Test Mode using the Max Records to Process setting. For example, if you have a large input file, set this value to 2 or 10 when you first run and see if those PI persons are being handled correctly. Then increase the number and let it process the whole input file. 
  5. Run your data in Live Mode using Process Now!
    1. Again, you might use a low number in Max Records to Process and then check the results to make sure you like them.
    2. Then run again with Max Records to Process set to 0 (zero) which means “no limit” to process all your input file data.
Optimizing your usage of the PI API:
  • On your first use of the Sync process (after verifying in Test Mode, of course), possibly in partial batches, process all your person data so that every PI person will be updated to match your system of record.
  • On subsequent uses of the Sync process, include only the person data you believe has changed since your first run (recent hires, recent terminations, name changes, assignment changes, etc).
  • Periodically, include all person data again (like the first time) just to be sure everything is in sync.

Processing Results

Two output files are generated by the Sync process and placed into the Output Location specified in the Setup tab:

Reading the Sync Person Data Log File

When running the Sync process, a file named “MagicTools-SyncPersonDataLog-{Test or Live}-{DateTime}.csv” is created. It describes all that is known about the handling of each row of input data processed, in a comma-separated values format. In Test Mode, it describes the proposed changes, and in Live Mode it describes the actual changes.

The columns and their possible values are:

  • RecordStatus
    • Settings – the first row of “data” is actually filled with information about the settings used to process the input data. The NewExternalID through NewJobName columns will also have values when this status is shown.
    • Changed – a single record was found to match and one or more fields were changed using the input file
    • NoChange – a single record was found to match but all the PI data already matched the input file
    • SkipNoMatch – the record was skipped because no match was found using any of the available input columns
    • SkipNoCurrEmail – the record was skipped because the one required field (CurrentEmail) was not included for that person
  • MatchResult = a collection of one or several of the following, separated by colons (:)
    • OneCurrExtID, OnePrevExtID, OneCurrEmail, OnePrevEmail
    • NoCurrExtID, NoPrevExtID, NoCurrEmail
    • ManyCurrEmail, NoPrevEmail, ManyPrevEmail
  • MatchAssmtUserID = the assessmentUserId of the matched person, if any
  • PersonPageUrl = web link to PI Person page, if found (Note: the assessmentUserId is part of this web link)
  • CurrentEmail to JobName columns = the original input file column values using standard column names
  • PIEmail to PIJobName columns = the original values in PI data for this person before any change
  • NewEmail to NewJobName columns
    • In the second line/row of each file, these columns will contain the settings used for each of these data items at the time the process was started. Possible values include:
      • UseInputData – change the PI data using data from the input file
      • DoNotChange – no change to the data item because settings were turned off
      • UseFixedValue – the option was chosen to assign a single fixed value to all matched persons — applies only to the FolderPath and PersonType columns.
    • In all other lines, these columns contain the new values of any columns that were changed in PI; unchanged fields are empty
  • FailureNote – if a person is skipped or if an update of PI data fails, additional info will be shared here to help you determine what went wrong

Use this file to determine whether the MagicTools Sync process is doing what you want it to do. 

Working with the Skipped Records File

If any input file rows are skipped as described above, the Sync process will generate a file named “MagicTools-SyncPersonDataSkipped-{Test or Live}-{DateTime}.csv”:

  • Format: comma-separated-values (CSV) file, ready to be used as input for a re-run after you’ve tried to fix the problems
  • Each time you run the process and some records are skipped, another Skipped Records file will be generated

What to do with the Skipped Records File:

  • You may wish to use the MagicTools Clean processes to remove duplicate data
  • Skipped persons may require manual fixes before running the Sync process again. For example:
    • If a person in your input file is found to have multiple PI person records that match, you may need to go into PI software, decide which one is “real”, and manually archive the others.
    • If your input file contained an invalid Job Name or Folder Path, you may need to fix the value in the input file to match a folder that is actually available in your PI data.
  • After doing some form of clean-up of the PI data, run the Sync process again using either the original input file or a fixed version of the Skipped Records file to process only the persons who were skipped the previous time.