Validate your hierarchy with an HRIS integration

Note: We're rolling out new hierarchy validation features to a select group of customers. To enable hierarchy validation on your account, talk to your Customer Success Coach or email

Why you should validate your hierarchy

Customers with validated hierarchies can unlock new functionality for automatically sharing data and insights. This makes it easier than ever to get data into the hands of your managers, allowing them to understand where to focus and act on a local level. 

This is important because a truly thriving culture has to be driven by more than just HR. Managers and team leaders play a critical role as well. That's why Culture Amp is continually building out capabilities to enable and support managers.

All you need to do is specify in your employee data who is the manager of whom.

Note: This article is for customers who update their data using an HRIS, such as Workday or BambooHR. Customers who update their data manually, using a CSV or XLSX spreadsheet, should see validating your hierarchy using a manual data import

How to set up your employee data to validate your hierarchy

Once hierarchy-based features have been switched on for your account, you need to prepare the data in your HRIS so that that it can be used to build a valid hierarchy in Culture Amp. This involves assigning every employee in your HRIS a manager (except your CEO), using a unique manager identifier.

The specific steps you need to take may depend on the type of HRIS you use. 


  1. Every employee must have a Manager designated under ‘Reports To’. This field can be found in Person > Job Information table > Reports to

  2. Create a report in BambooHR to integrate with Culture Amp, or use an existing report.
  3. In BambooHR, navigate to 'Report > Edit (pencil icon) > Calculated fields' and ensure the ‘Supervisor email’ and/or ‘Supervisor ID’ fields are included in the report.  These fields will add the email/ID of the ‘Reports to’ selection to the report.

    Ensure the ‘Supervisor email’ or ‘Supervisor ID’ field appears in the ‘Selected Fields’ for the BambooHR report, e.g.



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How to validate your hierarchy in Culture Amp

Once you HRIS is ready, open Culture Amp as an admin, go to the 'Account admin' section and click 'Import users'. 

Scroll down until you see the option to manually sync your Culture Amp data with your HRIS. Click 'sync'. 


After your data has been analyzed, select your manager identifier from the dropdown shown below. If you decide you do not want to enable hierarchies at this time, you can do so by setting ‘Enable hierarchies’ to off. 

Note: If you do not see the correct manager identifier in this dropdown, you may need to complete a manual sync in order to pull the identifier into Culture Amp first. Toggle hierarchies off and complete the import process. Then, start a new import and click 'sync' again. 


Your HRIS data will be reviewed for any roadblock hierarchy errors that prevent building your hierarchy. These will appear in the far left tile. You cannot continue with the sync if hierarchies are enabled and roadblock errors are present. You must either fix these errors in your HRIS and re-sync your data, or return to the previous step and turn off hierarchies.

How to troubleshoot hierarchy errors


Once you've completed the sync and validated your hierarchy, hierarchy validations will be permanently turned on for your account. Every time you sync data with your HRIS (automatic or manual), it'll be checked to see if it forms a valid hierarchy. This ensures your managers always have access to manager-based capabilities, such as hierarchy-based report sharing or performance cycles.

Manually adding and editing users

If you have a hierarchy enabled, some of the fields in the Add/Edit user modal are blocked to prevent you from unintentionally breaking your hierarchy. This ensures Culture Amp functionality works correctly and you can continue using manager-based features.  


If you want to update those fields for a user, correct the data in your HRIS and run a manual sync. 

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