Why You Should Backup Your Salesforce Metadata
Data backups get a lot of attention, and rightly so. Losing your records and analytics can have disastrous effects on your business. Not only will losing this data leave you without key insights, it can even become a compliance issue when customer data is misplaced.
Metadata can often be overshadowed by the immediate importance of these other data sets.
However, metadata is just as important to the functionality of your systems and should be protected.
Your Salesforce environment likely has a series of customizations to best serve the needs of your business, and metadata is at the heart of this personalization.
This metadata comes from hours upon hours of work from your team. Losing this information can result in the need to trace back old tasks and recreate the results.
Backing up this metadata and putting restore protocols in place can be done with a little time and attention. Compared to the potential losses, this effort can be a great asset to your organization and the systems you use every day.
1. Accidents Happen
One of the most common ways metadata is lost is the most simple explanation—it was an accident.
Many workflows will have multiple users. Any number of people can access pools of information at any time. This can lead to miscommunication and accidental overwrites of existing information.
The desire to clean up a project might lead someone to minimizing the amount of seemingly unused or outdated information. However, this can lead to the deletion of necessary Salesforce metadata. Unclear communication and non-existent safety measures will lead to eventual user error.
Instituting save points and alternate versions of your deployments can help guard against the negative aspects of this scenario.
2. Hacks Can Be Costly
Another potential threat to your metadata and overall system are the actions of cybercriminals. Your Salesforce platform can become a target for hackers that can either steal or corrupt your information.
Locking your system or simply vandalizing it can lead to the loss of essential metadata. Your operations will become directly impacted. Customer experience will deteriorate. And your employees will be busy playing catch-up instead of progressing through their duties.
Sufficient backups will be able to keep your systems moving after being restored when current files become damaged, either through an accident or through a malicious act. This saves you labor hours, which directly translates to saved money.
3. Maintain Data Relationships
There are many fields and operations that can be linked together. These relationships help automate your processes and make it much easier to utilize the available services.
Lost or corrupted metadata will affect these relationships, which translates to a decreased ease of use of your systems.
Salesforce data objects can be aligned and joined to better accomplish tasks. Losing the metadata means you lose these alignments. Fields that were previously populated with related data will remain blank.
Recovering your backups of up this metadata saves you the time of realigning all these objects and fields with related information.
4. Avoid Duplicating Work
Any metadata that is lost will need to be replaced. Much of this data is essential to the way your systems will operate, so you won’t be able to simply ignore the loss and move on.
Redundant work drastically decreases the efficiency of your operations. Your team is too busy trying to reestablish previous operations to make any progress on upcoming goals and tasks.
This costs money in labor hours, reduces profitable output, and ultimately delays planned progress.
Restoring backups eliminates the potential for redundant work, optimizing the efficiency of your team even in the event of lost or damaged metadata.
5. Allows for Secure Restoration of Data
A proper plan for backing up and restoring your metadata will include multiple snapshots taken at different points and relating to various data sets. This allows for the capability to implement restoration data from multiple areas in your Salesforce system.
The ability to access a variety of options ensures you have multiple layers of security for your Salesforce data and metadata. This information can be complicated and intricate, so you want to be sure you have access to everything.
Flexible recovery options allow you to recover data from any of these points:
- Object level
- Field level
- Record level
6. Rollbacks Account for Unforeseen Circumstances
Mistakes are going to happen. Proper testing of new code will greatly diminish the likelihood that new updates and applications will react negatively to existing systems.
However, this can still occasionally happen. Rollbacks allow you to revert to older versions of your system to work on the new updates and keep things working smoothly.
Metadata helps dictate how these new introductions will work, and sometimes these rollouts aren’t perfect. Backing up your existing Salesforce metadata with an available recovery infrastructure will give you an extra layer of security to go along with your testing capabilities.
Proper security measures will diminish the possibility of faulty rollouts, but it’s best to be prepared for the worst.
Considerations for Backups
AutoRABIT Vault offers the ability to configure your backups based on the importance of factors that matter most to your business. There are two main sections of these considerations—time and data.
The frequency of backups and amount of data backed up at any time will vary depending on your choices.
Recovery Point Objective (RPO)
This can be used to set the maximum data period a business is willing to lose from their system in the event of a disaster. A shorter RPO means a higher frequency of backups, which will require more storage capacity. A longer RPO is more affordable, but it runs the risk of losing more data.
Recovery Time Objective
This dictates how fast you’ll be able to recover from the moment a disaster strikes to the moment your can return to normal operations. A shorter RTO saves you on money lost from downtime, but costs more to keep up. A normal RTO is a few hours.
Backing up your Salesforce metadata is important to maintaining smooth operations. An adequate plan for restoring this backed up metadata and data is essential to a seamless process.