Formatting Tips for Setting Date as YYYY-MM-DD in MS Excel


System Administration imports require date fields to be entered in the YYYY-MM-DD format. However, Excel uses a default “General Date Format” that differs from system Administration’s requirements. Below is the process for changing the default date format to the YYYY-MM-DD format required by System Administration.

Important Note
When a file is opened in Excel, the date fields will revert back to Excel's default format. As a result, the date format will need to be changed every time an import file is created, opened, or edited.

Below is the default “General Date Format” Excel uses every time a file is opened:


Steps to change date format to YYYY-MM-DD:

Highlight the columns with dates or select all the cells with dates.

On the Excel Ribbon, select the Home tab.

In the Number panel, click the Date dropdown.

Select More Number Formats.


From the Category list, select Date.

From the Type list, select 2012-03-14.Click OK in the lower-right 


Save your file as a CSV UTF-8 and import the CSV into System Admin.

Important Note

As stated above, if you open the Excel file to make an update, it will revert back to its default date format. As a result, the date format will need to be changed again.

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