How to Sync HRIS Data from Gusto

How to sync HRIS data from Gusto

Jared Ellis avatar
Written by Jared Ellis
Updated over a week ago

What can I learn from this page?

How to sync HRIS data from Gusto

Who is this guide for?

Account Admins

Note: Gusto uses our full import process. When your data syncs, any employees not included in your data file will become inactive as former employees, with their End Date set to the import date. See: Importing your user data to Culture Amp for more information.

How to Integrate with Gusto

Culture Amp can import all your employee data directly from Gusto. The set-up process is straightforward and can usually be completed in a short period of time without technical support

What to Expect:

  • Employee Data will flow from Gusto to Culture Amp. Changes to employee data in Culture Amp will not flow to Gusto.

  • You can only integrate with a single Gusto company.

  • By default all active employees will be imported from Gusto into Culture Amp. Terminated employees and contractors will be excluded. If you need to exclude additional employees, you will be able to achieve it by creating a custom demographic. See Step 3 for further details.
    Any employees that are already in Culture Amp but are not imported from Gusto will be deactivated.

  • You will be able to configure which demographics to import into Culture Amp, in addition to the mandatory fields.

  • If you want to include demographics in Culture Amp that are not in the Gusto integration, you have 2 options:

    • Create and maintain the demographics directly in Culture Amp, the nightly automated sync will not overwrite them as long as there are no Gusto demographics with the same name.

    • Create and maintain a custom field in Gusto and include it in the integration sync.
      You can set up your integration to sync data manually (as triggered by an admin user when required) or automatically on a daily basis.

Before You Start:

Ensure that you have access to the following accounts when setting up the integration:

  • Gusto account with primary or full admin permissions

  • Culture Amp account with Account Administrator access

Step 1: Connect Your Gusto Account

1.Sign in to Culture Amp with an account that has Account Administrator access.


2. Navigate to your Settings > Data Integrations page in the Culture Amp platform. Select the Gusto Logo.

3. Click the Connect to Gusto button


4. Sign In to Gusto with an account that has primary or full admin permissions


5. Select Authorize Culture Amp to access your Gusto Account


6. Your Culture Amp account is now connected and authorized to import employees from Gusto into Culture Amp.

7. To disconnect your Gusto and Culture Amp account and remove authorisation select the Disconnect Link

8. If you have more than one company associated with your Gusto account, select the Company to sync with Culture Amp


Step 2: Choose the Fields to Sync from Gusto

The following Mandatory fields will be automatically imported in Culture Amp:

  • Name

  • Email*

  • Employee Id

  • Manager email

  • Preferred name*

  • Start date

  • End date


  • Email is used as an identifier for employees. By default work email from Gusto is used to identify employees and will be imported, If the work email for an employee is blank, the personal email from Gusto will be imported.

  • If employees are unexpectedly deactivated when you run an import please see the troubleshooting section below

  • Preferred name: By default the preferred first name from Gusto will be imported, if the preferred first name is not populated in Gusto then the full name from Gusto will be imported

  • Select any additional fields that you would like to be imported into Culture Amp


Step 3: Optional - Create a Custom Field to Exclude Specific People

If you'd like to exclude specific people, create a custom field in Gusto called "Exclude from Culture Amp". During the sync process, any employees with this field set to "Yes" will be excluded from being synced into Culture Amp. Any excluded employees with existing profiles in Culture Amp will transition to inactive users, marked as former employees with their End Date set to the date of import.

To create a custom field in Gusto, you'll need to be either a Complete or Concierge customer. For more information, take a look at this article from Gusto's help center.

We recommend creating the custom field with these options:

  • What is the field called?

    • Exclude from Culture Amp

  • Helper text

    • A field to exclude specific people from Culture Amp. People who have this field set to 'Yes' will not be imported into Culture Amp

  • What type of field should this be?

    • Radio with 2 options "Yes" or "No"

  • Who should fill out this field?

    • Admins

We’ll read this field and include/exclude people on every sync.


Note: The default behavior for users left off your HRIS sync file is to set their end date to the import date, categorizing them as former employees. If you prefer that these users are treated as deactivated instead, just contact Culture Amp Support, and we can adjust the default setting.

Step 4: Set Sync Settings and Save

  • We recommend leaving daily syncs disabled for now. The best practice is to first do a manual sync where you get to review how the integration data will change your employee data, before confirming those changes. After you have confirmed that data is coming in correctly, you can enable daily syncs.

  • Enter the email address of a person that should be contacted in case of any integration errors.


  • Select the Save settings button to save the integration


Step 5: Manually Sync Data

After setting up a connection between Gusto and Culture Amp we recommend that you perform a manual sync to confirm that the data is coming in correctly.

  • The easiest way to trigger a manual sync is to click the Sync button on the modal you see after saving your integration settings.


  • If you would like to skip the sync for now and do it at another time, select the Skip sync button. A manual sync can be performed via Account Admin Settings > Data integrations > Sync data.


  • Alternatively, you can also trigger a manual sync via Account Admin Settings > Users > Import users.


  • Click the Get Started button


  • At the bottom of the page in the Sync with Gusto section. Select the Sync button (Ignore the ‘Select Import’ and ‘Import your user data’ sections as these are not applicable for an integrated sync)


  • Culture Amp will validate the data being imported, if there are no concerns select Next


  • Review data. If there are any issues or errors with the changes that are going to be made in Culture Amp, please see the Troubleshooting Integration Issues section below or reach out to Product Support. Note: No changes are made to your employee data at this step.

  • Select the Import data button to import the employees into Culture Amp.


  • Culture Amp will import the data, select the Go to Users button


  • Review the users that have been imported


Step 6: Set Up Daily Sync

  • After you have done your first manual sync and are confident that data is coming in correctly, enable a daily sync on your Gusto integrations settings.

  • To update the integration follow Data Integrations > Configure > Edit


  • Scroll down to Step 3: Set sync settings, toggle Turn on daily syncs


Add Your Hierarchy

Once your integration has been successfully set up, the process of adding hierarchy to your account is quite easy! The steps to add hierarchy to your account can be located via our Add your hierarchy guide.

The right demographic for validating hierarchy for anyone with Gusto integration is 'Manager Email'. Therefore, it will be the only option you see on 'Set up hierarchy' step of your import workflow.

If before setting up Gusto integration you had hierarchy based on demographic other than 'Manager Email', please reach out to Product Support in order to change your hierarchy from that old demographic to 'Manager Email'.


Troubleshooting Integration Issues

Switching from CSV Uploads to the Integration

If you already have existing data in Culture Amp as a result of doing CSV uploads or using a different integration, then there are a few things to pay attention to:

  • In your first sync via Gusto integration you are more likely to see errors related to matching employees in current & integration data. Please review the troubleshooting information in ‘Duplicate employees in Culture Amp’ section below.

  • For all mandatory fields, we will automatically do the mapping, even if they are called differently in Gusto. E.g. we automatically map ‘Hire date’ in Gusto to ‘Start Date’ in Culture Amp.

  • If your additional demographics have a different name in Gusto than they are currently titled in Culture Amp, they will be created as a new demographic after your first sync. We would recommend keeping this in mind if you trend results in surveys for demographic groups over time. When you run your next survey, you can reach out to the Culture Amp product support team to do a once-off mapping of the previous demographic name to the new demographic name from Gusto. To avoid confusion from users about which demographic to use, we would recommend navigating to the Settings > Account demographics page and deleting the old demographics after your first sync (this will not impact any previous survey results or comparisons).

Duplicate Employees in Culture Amp

Culture Amp will match employees in Gusto to employees in Culture Amp based on the employees email address. If the same employee has a different email address in Culture Amp and Gusto, duplicate employees will be created in Culture Amp. To reconcile the duplicates please follow the steps below

Resolving duplicates before changes have been applied to Culture Amp

  • Feedback on all employees to be created/updated/deactivated will be provided on the ‘Review’ screen during the first sync. Ideally, you would then abort the sync and update employee emails in Culture Amp to match Gusto data.

  • In Culture Amp, employees' email addresses can be updated via a user modal: Go to the Users page and click on the name of the employee you want to update, then update the email of the employee. Repeat for all duplicated employees. After that you can try integration sync again.

Resolving duplicates after changes have been applied to Culture Amp

If you did not address the duplicates on the first sync and duplicate employees have been created, it is possible to clean the data the following way:

  • Deactivate the newest employee and remove email from it, e.g. by assigning a fake ID/email to allow saving.

  • Update existing user record to match employee email in Gusto. This will allow us to retain the history on the existing employee record.

Sync Blocked to Protect Employee Privacy

Your automated daily sync might be blocked if Culture Amp suspects that one of your employees may have had their details mixed up with another. You will receive a notification of this via email.

If a combination of an employee's Name, Date of Birth, or Email are changed, the sync will be blocked. This is to prevent an employee accidentally getting access to another employee's private information, such as performance reviews.

If you've intentionally changed the employee's details, you can run a manual sync to push through the change. Simply click 'Import data' from the Users page and select 'Sync'. Culture Amp will guide you through the rest.

Investigating and Resolving any Data Issues

Once the first integration has been performed and integration history has been created, the first step when investigating data issues is to check the import summary for your most recent import. This will provide information about the state of your integration.

To find this information, go to Account Administration > Import History and select your most recent import.

If there was a problem with your last import, you will either be able to view errors on this page or you will be prompted to run a manual sync to identify any problems.

Deactivated Employees in Culture Amp

Culture Amp will match employees in Gusto to employees in Culture Amp based on the employees email address.

Gusto has both work and private email fields, while Culture Amp only has one email field. The mapping rule in this integration is that we will use work email from Gusto by default. When work email is blank, we will use private email from Gusto.

If an employee has previously been imported into Culture Amp using an email different from the one coming through Gusto integration, then there is no way for us to understand that it is the same person. In that case in your Review screen during the manual sync you will see that the existing employee would be deactivated, while a new employee (with email coming from Gusto) will be created.

So the advice is:

  • Check on the Review screen during the first sync which employees are to be created/deactivated.

  • If you notice that some employees are about to be deactivated & created with new emails, do the following

    • Note which employees are deactivated and with what new Gusto email they are being created

    • Abort the sync

    • Go to the Users page and click on the name of the employee you want to update, then update the email of the employee to match Gusto email. Repeat for all deactivated employees.

    • Trigger a manual integration sync, confirm that the issue is resolved and apply the changes, once you are happy with them.

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