Establishing a reliable customer relationship management (CRM) solution is extremely important for any organization. But once a business has a high-functioning CRM customized exactly the way they want it, they think their work is done. Routine Salesforce maintenance is just as important as building out your CRM.
Here’s what you should be doing in real-time and on a weekly, monthly, quarterly, and annual basis to maintain a healthy CRM.
As a Salesforce consulting company, we do more than just build out new functionality. We help our clients ensure that they have a well-maintained CRM that runs efficiently. You focus on your business, and our experts can incorporate routine Salesforce maintenance into the Salesforce monthly services we provide to your business.
While it’s important to be proactive and do everything you can to keep your CRM running efficiently, issues will occasionally need to be resolved in real-time. As an organization that uses Salesforce, expect to spend a few hours per week on the following activities:
- Unlocking user accounts and resetting passwords
- Helping users develop or make improvements to reports
- Troubleshooting email campaigns
- Expanding or refining sharing rules or access privileges so records can be viewed and manipulated by the appropriate team members
- Fixing data records that are inaccessible to users
Dealing with issues in real-time can be a pain, but it’s something that any growing organization must learn to deal with. If you have the right team of Salesforce administrators on board, you can solve real-time issues quickly and efficiently.
Things can change fast; something that was working completely fine last week could suddenly be a problem come Monday morning. For this reason, expect to spend a few hours each week on routine Salesforce maintenance tasks. The time you spend on weekly Salesforce tasks can range from a couple of hours to a couple of days. It really just depends on the week, the size of your organization, and how many different user groups you have.
The following are some of the most common weekly Salesforce maintenance tasks:
- Export weekly data/weekly snapshot and store it for at least 90 days
- Run adoption dashboards
- Run data deduplication tools to reduce the impact of redundant data
- Run data-quality dashboards
- Examine time-based workflow and check for unexpected entries
- Check Salesforce Dot Com (SFDC) error logs
- Look at the login history table and look for user lockouts and excessive login errors
- Deactivate any users who have left the company or are moving to a position that does not require Salesforce access
- Reassign roles and profiles to reflect organization changes and users’ new job duties
- Transfer record ownership due to job responsibility changes
- Modify roles or record-sharing rules to reflect any organizational changes
- Import leads and contacts
- Update price lists as needed if you use Salesforce for e-commerce; you may need to do this more often if you frequently run promotions or limited time offers
- Change delegation and escalation paths in workflows and approval cycles
- Run APEX tests to test for any new errors
Weekly maintenance tasks will look different for every organization, but no matter what, you need to make them a priority to keep your CRM running efficiently.
There are some tasks that should be performed on a monthly basis. These should take no more than one or two days’ time to get through. Monthly Salesforce maintenance tasks include the following:
- Read about high priority updates on Salesforce.com that will be automatically installed within a few weeks (it’s best if you do patch installs on your own so you can fix any problems you discover)
- Make additions or modifications to pick-list values
- Run field utilization reports and remove a field that isn’t used enough
- Metadata backups before sandboxes are refreshed
- Sandbox refreshes to update the sandbox’s metadata from its source org
- Archiving error logs and system backups
- Run a full system backup on any system integrated with Salesforce.com
- Use a data extraction tool to pull custom settings data and compare it to data from previous months
Making time for monthly Salesforce maintenance tasks is important and rewarding; because by completing these tasks, you’ll increase productivity for your organization as a whole.
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For checklist items that don’t need to be done every month, make sure you get them done at least once per quarter. Completing these tasks will take up one to three days of your time, but they’re extremely important. Here’s what you need to be doing on a quarterly basis as far as Salesforce maintenance goes:
Files to save:
- Add or remove members of your Communities or Partner Portals, then download the CSV (keep this file forever)
- Download the CSV from the system administrator set up audit log (save this file forever)
Reports to run:
- Run the Reports report to identify reports that haven’t been used in the last six months (hide them but do not delete them); this is a way of optimizing your CRM for users
- Run the Roles by Profile report to identify roles that have no active users in them
Additional quarterly tasks:
- Review release notes for any associated plug-ins and third-party applications; this will help you determine if any configurations and operational changes need to be made
- Also, educate yourself on any new upcoming Salesforce versions or updates
- Examine new pick-list values that have been modified or added to any field and investigate the impact of those changes
- If you’re a certified Salesforce Administrator, study for the recertification take it online
- Attend at least one Salesforce user group meeting or webinar every quarter so your team can stay current with the latest
- Archive weekly data snapshots that are more than 90 days old
Quarterly Salesforce tasks can take time, but you’ll be so glad you did them once it’s done. Not only are saving important data and files, but routine maintenance tasks like these help you maintain a healthy CRM that operates more efficiently for everyone in your organization.
Last but certainly not least, as an avid Salesforce user, you have to be completing certain maintenance tasks each year. The following tasks will take a few days max and should be completed every year:
- Create an archive of all the system’s field history tables to ensure you have an audit trail that goes longer than one year
- Archive or purge documents, emails, and tasks to reduce storage charges in your system
- Archive Salesforce Chatter histories (in case of audits and for compliance reasons)
- Update system road maps (add in summaries about upgrades and new Salesforce features that are needed to achieve business goals)
- Attend Dreamforce; a four-day event bringing together the entire Salesforce community
Hiring a team of Salesforce Administrators, even just one, is very costly. Do you need help with the management of your daily Salesforce instance? At Abstrakt, our Salesforce consultants know that Salesforce is a lot more than a CRM, it’s the backbone of your organization. Plus, our Salesforce managed services cost a lot less than hiring a full-time Salesforce administrator in-house.
Are you interested in discussing how our team could help your business use Salesforce more effectively? Schedule a meeting today.