Formatting dates and times incorrectly while Importing can be the root of errors users tend to experience.
This article shows how to format dates when Importing and clarify two common questions users encounter.
How To Format Date Fields
Date Fields have to be formatted exactly as yyyy-MM-dd HH:mm:ss . If you don't have a time stamp associated with your date, use yyyy-MM-dd 17:00:00 . In order to reformat your dates in Excel use the following formula: =TEXT(A1,"yyyy-MM-dd HH:mm:ss") or =TEXT(A1,"yyyy-MM-dd")&" 17:00:00" if it is a Field with only a date and not a date and time.
1) What Time Zone is used when Importing dates?
The Time Zone used when Importing dates is based off of the Customer Profile Time Zone. The default Customer Profile Time Zone is UTC. Unless the user has manually changed their preferred Time Zone, it will stay at UTC indefinitely. The Customer Profile Time Zone can be changed by clicking the icon in the top right corner then Profile. Once in Profile, the Time Zone tab will be in the bottom right corner of your screen.
2) Why is 17:00:00 the recommended time when a user does not have a time stamp associated with their date?
As noted above, the Customer Profile Time Zone determines the Time Zone used when Importing. However, the Time Zone displayed in the records is based on the user's browser Time Zone. For example, if a user sets UTC as their default Time Zone, but lives in the Central Standard Time Zone, setting the time stamp in the Import file to 17:00:00 will ultimately result with the records displaying 12:00 PM as the time.
We always want Record Dates to occur during the workday, so this is a good way to ensure that happens. It is important to be cognizant of your Customer Profile Time Zone when Importing Records with dates.