When it comes to organizing your home, Marie Kondo has become somewhat of a household name. But the never-ending challenge of staying organized isn’t limited to individuals and their collection of knitted sweaters.
Businesses also face a similar challenge when it comes to organizing their data. As data growth continues to accelerate, the regulatory and legal requirements to control this torrent of information keep escalating, causing data cleanup to become more than just a “nice to have”.
For companies using Salesforce, a lack of data quality can adversely impact the business in many ways: slow performance, reduced agility, sluggish adoption, and IT/business misalignment, just to name a few. Until older projects are cleaned up to make room for new initiatives, any Salesforce org will become unhealthy over time.
So what can you do about it? There are several actions every admin (and their users) can take right now to organize and streamline their Salesforce org. Let’s dive deeper into a few of those data cleanup tips, and explain how to mitigate the risk of data loss while tidying up.
Remove unused data and metadata
Maintaining quality data is a top responsibility for Salesforce admins. The more data you have, the more likely it is that you will encounter duplicates, faulty information, or missing pieces. These issues can be the result of a variety of factors–user error, no preventative automated safeguards, or a lack of data hygiene processes.
Help your data stay “clean” by identifying and removing any unused or unassigned roles, profiles, fields, and objects. Just make sure you understand what workflows, apps and child objects are associated with any parent objects you delete, so you minimize the risk of cascade delete.
Archive data that you need to keep but isn’t being used regularly
When doing an audit of your Salesforce data and deciding what you should remove, keep in mind that specific government or industry-imposed regulations, such as GPDR, CCPA, HIPAA, and SEC 17a-4, have data retention requirements. Check with your compliance, risk, and legal departments to see if they have set retention policies for sensitive data that align with the applicable rules.
After you’ve documented specific policies for each set of objects/records, you can create the technical documentation that includes a process for executing the queries to delete/archive the records from Salesforce. As you might expect, implementing your Salesforce data retention policy can turn into a significant project without the right archiving solution. With an automated solution like OwnBackup Archiver, you can quickly set up archiving policies, allowing your company to free up storage and stay in compliance easily.
Streamline your processes
Once you’ve cleaned up and archived your data, you can start designing your org the way you like. A streamlined org means that every user has the tools that they need to do their job and every admin understands how to maintain and support those tools.
For example, you can create list views to quickly access just the records that you need, customize search results to include only relevant fields, or utilize compact layouts to show the most important information right at the top of a page.
While it’s smart to tidy up your company’s Salesforce org, it’s even more important that you don’t remove data that is critical to your business. Like most SaaS platforms, Salesforce is not responsible for protecting you from user-inflicted data loss and corruption. You are responsible for building a solid data protection foundation that not only requires strict user permission controls, but also includes comprehensive backup and recovery.
So to help you avoid this, here are a few steps you can take to prevent accidental data loss.
1. Reduce “modify all data” permissions
The “Modify All Data” permission is one of the most powerful in your Salesforce platform, as it allows a single user to access all the data in your environment and change or delete it. Even just a few custom profiles containing “Modify All Data” permissions can put your Salesforce data at risk. At most, this permission should be reserved for admins or very powerful users.
2. Reduce your number of Salesforce admins
Having multiple “System Admin” profiles could invoke ungoverned changes that will make your Salesforce data difficult to manage. If you determine that some of these users need admin permissions, you may want to leverage the delegate admin profile option or make custom profiles for these users to make sure they can only access the data that is absolutely essential.
3. Provide users with sufficient training
Once you understand what your data should look like, you must train all your users to identify those same qualities and stick to a standardized process. Using tools like customized page layouts or in-app guidance will make Salesforce both accessible and useful to all users.
Just as important as training is communication. If your users understand the reason for the change, why it’s happening, and when it’s happening, they’ll be more likely to adopt and embrace the new process.
4. Have a backup and recovery solution in place
Even if you do all of the things listed above, accidents and mistakes can still happen. In fact, nearly half of all Salesforce data loss comes from human error. That’s why having a backup and recovery solution is so important, and why Salesforce themselves recommend it.
When considering such a solution, you should make sure that it meets your company’s security and compliance requirements, and provides accessible, reliable backups of all of your Salesforce data, metadata, AND attachments. Read more about the six questions you should ask when choosing a backup and recovery plan.
To all you 'Marie Kondos' out there, fear not. With OwnBackup, you can tidy up Salesforce records with peace of mind, knowing that your Salesforce data is safe.
With OwnBackup, you can identify a data loss in real-time, quickly understand the extent of the loss with visual compare and find capabilities, and recover that data in minutes with just a few clicks. OwnBackup customers feel 3x more prepared to restore from a data loss or corruption than non-customers.
For more useful tips for Salesforce admins, check out our latest webinar, "Salesforce Admin Tips That Will Make Your Users Love You"