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DIY projects for solo Salesforce admins

April 08, 2020By
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Budgets disappearing? Here are some mini DIY projects for solo Salesforce admins.

Project 1: Permission Sets

In the current economic climate, a lot of companies are looking into cutting budgets and costs. For many Salesforce Admins within end clients, this means partner budgets have been reduced or put on hold indefinitely.

Whilst this presents significant business challenges, it also presents new opportunities! Now is the perfect time to complete some of the projects you couldn’t get around to before or upskill so you can take on more responsibility and be less reliant on partners.

If you’re a Salesforce Admin and wondering where to begin, we recommend these three mini-projects as a good place to start. Let’s begin with Permission Sets.

Rationalize profiles by utilizing Permission Sets

When you first implemented Salesforce you probably had a nice succinct set of profiles that matched the personas in your user base. Then, over time, as new teams came onboard and exceptions came to light, profiles started to propagate and before you knew it there were 50 profiles to cover every single permutation and edge case. Sound familiar?

Permission Sets were introduced as a better way of building permissions for a given user in a layered fashion. A user still has one profile but can have multiple permission sets as a way of adding additional permissions over and above what is in their profile.

Additionally, Permission Set Groups can be used to collect Permission Sets together to make assigning users easier. For example, you could assign one group to a user instead of assigning five Permission Sets.

The final piece of the puzzle before you can design your new model is Muted Permission Sets. When these are added to a Permission Set Group they mute permissions. For example, perhaps your group includes a set containing a delete permission that is needed elsewhere but not in this group - you can instead introduce a muted set to override.

Luckily there are tools to help. Salesforce Labs have built the free Profile and Permission Set Helper. This tool has two functions.

Unravel the profiles you already have

History leaves clues. When you create a new custom profile you choose an existing profile as a starting point. This is how the proliferation of profiles starts. Often the name you give that profile is a derivative of the profile you cloned it from. You may be dealing with years of history that predates your involvement but hopefully from the naming conventions and users assigned to each profile you can untangle these. Then you can use the tool above to convert the profile to a permission set. The users who were on that profile can be changed to the base profile and have the permission set assigned. This is a good starting point from which you can then build permission sets by functional area to rationalize these further.

I’ve seen organizations with upwards of 100 profiles. With this approach, you can hopefully reduce that number quite considerably. Once complete maintenance is much easier and general sanity greatly increased!

Project 2: Data backup

At the time of writing this post, we are experiencing an unprecedented global situation resulting in uncertain economic times. Many companies have pulled back or paused budgets.

For many Salesforce admins, this means partner budgets have been reduced or put on hold indefinitely. However, this can also be an opportunity to work on projects you haven’t had the bandwidth for or learn new skills so you can take on more responsibility and be less reliant on partners.

Managing storage within limits

We all know that Salesforce storage is expensive. There have been some changes to limits over time but you still need to be vigilant in order to keep your Salesforce org streamlined whilst being cost-effective.

So what’s the best way to keep an eye on your storage? Luckily there is a fantastic FREE app available from the Salesforce AppExchange called Storage Helper.

This app is easy to set up and includes dashboards to help you monitor both data and file storage.

Crafting a data storage strategy

With Storage Helper you can monitor your storage but you still need a data storage strategy that ensures you remain within the limits.

Things to consider are:

  • What data do you need to keep stored within your org?
  • Can you move files to another service such as Dropbox, Amazon S3 or others?
  • Do you have an archive policy in place?
  • Do you have a backup policy in place?
  • How can you restore any data that is archived or deleted?

Regardless of how big your Salesforce Org is or the size of your company/customer, you need to address these questions and come up with suitable answers. Preferably, these should be written up and properly distributed so that everyone required to be in the know is on the same page.

Sophisticated backup and recovery process

Where to from here? If you need a sophisticated backup and recovery process then you may want to consider applications such as:


“The OwnBackup platform provides a comprehensive Salesforce backup and recovery solution that minimizes user-inflicted data loss risk and costs, supports regulatory compliance, and builds business resiliency. With OwnBackup data protection, your organization can avoid unexpected detours along your digital transformation journey.”

Grax Backup & Restore

“Take control and ownership of your data in 3rd party apps:

  1. Snapshot everything over time (data, metadata, hierarchies)
  2. Store it in your cloud
  3. Recover any time
  4. Use backup data in reports & dashboards you already use”

Salesforce Shield

Protect your enterprise with point-and-click tools that enhance trust, transparency, compliance, and governance across all of your business-critical apps.

  • Meet compliance policies with Platform Encryption.
  • See performance and usage data with Event Monitoring.
  • Know the state and value of your data using Field Audit Trail.

Accountability within your organization

One last but vital point to consider is who will own this inside your company. Do you have the expertise, such as a dedicated System Administrator, with the capacity and understanding to set up and maintain the chosen app?

This will be truly tested when you have to recover and restore your data.

Still wondering how to get started?

Our experts are here to help.

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