This is a classic issue, and it can be solved through workflow by reading in a flat (csv) file, but may be slow or sometimes inaccessible.
You could try using an ODBC connection (DSN stored on machine doing reading), and point it to an Excel spreadsheet or a DB that also lives on the same SQL-Server as the QC Projects. We do NOT recommend storing additional tables or columns inside your QC-related Databases. We also do not recommend direct manipulation of data in those databases.
Here are some posts related to the issue and some coding ideas: