In your nonprofit Salesforce admin toolkit, a weekly backup is a must. Although I completely trust Salesforce’s security to store your data, having a weekly backup makes me feel extra confident in case anything goes wrong on my side of the data equation. Here are some examples:
- I perform a major import of new data, but something goes wrong. I can use last week’s backup to check and compare against.
- A staff member deleted a series of records in a merge operation, but now I need some of that ‘lost’ information and it’s past the 15 days the deleted records are held in the recycle bin. I can perform a find in the weekly backup spreadsheets.
How do I perform a Salesforce backup?
What tips and tricks should I consider when performing a Salesforce backup?
I’ve found several tips to make my Longshore Consulting clients more successful with their weekly backups:
1. Schedule the backup for a Monday, Tuesday, or Wednesday. Since the backup file download links are only good for 48 hours, starting earlier in the week means you’ll have more time on weekdays if you can’t get to this task the exact moment you receive an email from Salesforce that your backup is ready.
2. Export attachments on a quarterly basis. Since attachments are huge, it’s typically not necessary to back these up more than once a quarter. Add a calendar reminder for yourself to manually check off the attachments checkbox once every three months, then uncheck it for the following weeks.
3. Save the files to a shared drive or other secured location. Since keeping your data safe is the name of the game, be sure you know where you’re going to put the files. You may need to speak with IT if the files become extremely large.
4. Guess what: all data in your weekly data export is not really all data!
Thanks to a recent conversation in the Power of Us Hub, I learned that not all data is included in my weekly data export! As Judi Sohn said in the Hub, “[Your weekly data export includes] ‘all data at the time you scheduled the backup’ and not ‘all data now and in the future.'” YIKES!!!
So what can you do?
- Use an external, paid tool like backupify to perform daily automated backups (h/t Adam Kramer).
- Proactively check the boxes next to new objects you create or apps/managed packages you install from the AppExchange after the first date you set up your Data Export. (h/t Beth Breines)
What helps you with your weekly Salesforce backups? Have you come across any other tips, surprises, or tools? Let me know in the comments!