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7 Step Data Cleanse: Salesforce Hygiene

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CloudFixer and MCG Training have concocted a 7-Step Master Cleanse for Salesforce data that they shared via webinar on Tuesday, March 19th at 1 PM EST. Luckily, there are no lemons, maple syrup or …

CloudFixer and MCG Training have concocted a 7-Step Master Cleanse for Salesforce data that they shared via webinar on Tuesday, March 19th at 1 PM EST. Luckily, there are no lemons, maple syrup or cayenne pepper involved!

You’re the perfect data cleansing candidate if you:
- Are worried that Salesforce, while very powerful, can also be costly and time consuming. We want to show you how it can be done easily and inexpensively.
- Need the right arguments for investing in data quality.


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  • Hi folks! Welcome to The Seven Step Data Cleanse. We’re going to get started! Anyone who joins late will be forever wondering what they missed…
  • I’m Ehren Foss, of CloudFixer. I’ve worked with nonprofits and Salesforce.com for around six years, and I’ve seen some data so scary my hair fell out. I’m a developer and coder, I really enjoy using hotkeys in Gmail and other programs, and I like the outdoors when the Northeast isn’t blanketed in 14 inches of gray slush.Hi, I’m Marc Baizman….
  • So what kind of cleanse is this going to be, Marc? Do I need to drink a cup of lemon juice and snort cayenne powder? …Oh good, what a relief. Well, actually, cleaning data can be just as bad, can’t it?….
  • Stop us if you’ve heard these before…Uh oh, you built the database and you’re not sure? What happens if all the reports are wrong?Right, after this campaign. After this webinar I’m finally going to get in shape, organize my music, and learn Chinese.All of your historical data? Like 10 year old volunteer signups? I wish I had a pony and eternal youth!Yeah, because this intern will be way better than the last intern who made this mess in the first place.Our goal with this webinar is first to remind you that data hygiene is really, really important. Really really important. Like brushing your teeth, eating right, doing your taxes properly, the repercussions of not keeping your data clean can be pretty nasty. Our next goal is to show you that it’s not as hard as you thought to keep your data clean. Then we’re going to show you some really handy, specific strategies and tactics you can use.
  • Uh oh, if I came across that note in an Excel file I’d start to worry!Don’t worry, I’m exaggerating. Just a little.Why do people need to clean spreadsheets? Because the data that comes out of Salesforce is messy, and before it gets sent somewhere else – to a bookkeeper, or bulk mailing system – it has to be cleaned up.
  • Whoah, what if after you spend a whole day cleaning up the spreadsheet, the number STILL doesn’t match finance? Well my friend, then it’s time to dust off the resume and fire up your job search. Time to abandon ship!You’re exaggerating again aren’t you…any data can be cleaned. You might be left with a smaller database, but the world will be a better place.
  • Marc I think the organization that sent this email should attend this webinar. Looks like their mail merge didn’t go so smoothly!
  • SHOW POLL RESULTS Ok, we’ve pounded into you the importance of keeping your data clean, and shown how much damage bad data can do. For the rest of the webinar we’re going to…7 issuesTalk about themSpecific, take home tacticsWill share slidesAsk questions anytimeWe’ll send slides, recording, and Q&A we didn’t get to out to all participants.
  • Topic number one! Strategy. There’s a reason we’re starting here, because everything else flows from it.
  • It’s silly to have a slide about “strategy tactics”, but because your strategy has a goal in mind, you’ll need to break down that goal into tasks and prioritize them. These are just a couple examples of what you can weave into your staff meetings, priority lists, and the like. You can also give your organization an assignment to publish a data strategy in one month, and to follow up on it every three months.A high level goal about data should exist on the same level as goals involving fundraising, your program, or your mission. Who cares if you served 10% more meals but had to work twice as hard to do it because of bad data?
  • Hand in hand with strategy is who will be implementing it. Who is accountable for executing the strategy?
  • We hope you’ll appreciate that we won’t be doing the next section, automation, in a robot voice. Why not use some amazing Salesforce features that automatically help keep data clean?
  • Here’s a screenshot of what it looks like to edit a Validation Rule. On the left the Green arrow is pointing to the Validation Rules area for the Contacts object. For Custom Objects, they’ll be on the Object configuration page under the Create menu. The Red Arrow is the Error message. Be sure to make this informative and helpful! Imagine explaining it to someone on their first day using Salesforce. The Description in Yellow can help you and other Administrators remember what the intent of the rule was, and to help document the formula.Standard ObjectsSetup (top right, under your name) -> App Setup -> Customize -> (Object) -> Validation RulesCustom ObjectsSetup -> App Setup -> Create -> Objects -> Object-> Validation RulesNext to field vs. top of page
  • If you aren’t sure where to start, do a quick web search for validation rules examples and ideas. There are tons out there in the community, and some of them are exceedingly clever!The most common types are to make sure dates make sense. Should I set a reminder in the past? Can an event end before it starts? Was someone born 5 years from now? These are philosophical questions, but the answer is probably no.If you use Record Types, or have two different kinds of behavior or processes in a single object (like Organization or Individual Accounts), you can use validation rules to enforce data in each case. Same thing for picklists. If the Status is Open, Closed Date should be blank.Do you have “placeholder” Leads and other stuff that are basically empty? Make sure people don’t just type in garbage like a single question mark.
  • This is a real world example of an organization that tracks internships. You can see way out in the year 2069 and 2093, there are a couple records with really, really strange dates. They could use a validation rule to prevent those records from being saved.
  • Let’s say you’re validating a Contact, and have a rule that should only flag records if the Contacts’ Account has a certain Type. Validation Rules already allow you to do that for certain types of relationships, which is really cool.You can use Roll-Up summary formula custom fields, or other clever formula fields, to make it easier to validate data. How about you can’t Close an Opportunity that has pending transactions? Or you can’t cancel an event with registrants?This next one is extremely easy to forget. When you create a validation rule, Salesforce doesn’t magically go and fix your old bad data. Create a report that finds records that violate the rule, and fix those records. Keep that report around so you can use it later to double check your validation rule. Sometimes for imports, people turn validation rules off and then forget to turn them back on. A backup report is a great way to find out when that happens.Let your data be your guide. Don’t make 50 validation rules just because you think something might be a problem. Look for problems and let them guide where you apply validation rules.
  • We don’t have the time to show you each step in detail, but this is a quick overview.A rule has an Action – updating a field, sending an email, stuff like that.A rule has criteria – when should this rule happen? What records should be affected? When should the rule fire? You put those two things together and create the rule.Something that is extremely easy to forget? Activate the rule. Check a box, it’s that easy.But you’re not done! You need to inform your users about the rule, what it does, why it exists, and who to talk to with problems. You should document the thinking behind the rule, and the process it helps drive, so you can remember what it does in a year. You should test the rule. Make sure it operates on the proper records, and does the right thing!
  • Record must be saved first before workflow can execute!
  • As you drill down, start with objects. New Salesforce users are often stumped by the tabs at the top, because they don’t yet know what everything does and are afraid to break things. Soothe them by removing tabs or apps they don’t need. When the time comes, you can add them back.Next, take a gander at your Lookup fields. You can use apps like Field Trip or CloudFixer (or just run reports) to see how “filled in” those relationships are. Should objects always be related? Should a certain Opportunity record type always have a Contact associated? Other relatively simple things to check for are records owned by inactive users – they will be harder to find – or records that haven’t been modified in a while, especially Accounts and Contacts. Same with records not related to anything – does the data in that record stand alone? Or should you give it context?
  • A typicalsalesforce instance has between 100 and 200 objects and around 20 fields on each objects. That’s a lot! But don’t worry, you can focus your review on the objects people spend most of their time with.Again, use reports or an app to identify unused or under utilized fields. Remove them from layouts, or delete them entirely.Another handy rule is to always remove a field from the system when you need to add one. When creating new custom fields, be sure to use special field types for special data. Salesforce will help you validate dates, emails, phone numbers, percents, numbers, and URLs.
  • Easy describe helps dig into your data model and other configuration settings – this is for when you need to look at what system administrators in the past may have set up.Grid buddy allows you to do bulk updates to records on different objects in a spreadsheet type interface, all within SalesforceDupe Blocker does exactly that – blocks common types of duplicates. It’s by the same folks who make Demand Tools
  • If you’re so inclined, these are apps we’d recommend when you really have to get your hands dirty and move some data around. ETL stands for Extract, Transform, Load, so you can use that to help your web searching.Demand Tools is the cat’s pajamas. They’ve recently ended free support for nonprofits, but this app is still deeply discounted and extremely valuable. It’s a challenge to learn but valuable expertise. Apsona falls into the same category – comes up quite a bit in the NPSP and NPSF google groups and can provide more powerful reporting.Jitterbit’s data loader is just as powerful as the regular Data Loader, but it’s much easier to use and more configurable.
  • Once you’re done creating a strategy, getting your leadership on board, doing daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, and annual things to keep your data clean, and your data is pretty clean, now you can use business intelligence tools with confidence. The amazing reports that can come out of these tools will help you make the best decisions you can for your organization and your mission, and that’s what it’s all about.
  • 7 issuesTalk about themSpecific, take home tacticsWill share slides
  • Transcript

    • 1. 7 Step Data Cleanse
    • 2. Your lovely presenters Photo Photo here here Ehren Foss Marc Baizman @ehrenfoss @mbaizman Salesforce.com data Nonprofit technologywrangler, developer, gamer, coach, Salesforce andhotkey afficianado, outdoor Google Apps, improv and enthusiast sketch comedy (Lefty) performer, unrepentant nerd. 2
    • 3. Wait…what kind of cleanse? http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Master_Cleanse_refrigerator.jpg
    • 4. Stop me if you’ve heard this one… “I’m not sure this report is showing us the right information.” “After this campaign, we’ll update our donor data.” “We need to import ALL of our historical data.” “I wish people would enter the right information into the system.” “We can get an intern to clean this up.”
    • 5. Symptoms
    • 6. Symptoms
    • 7. Symptoms Doesn’t match Finance!
    • 8. Dear <<FirstName>>,We would like to thank you for your generousgift of $NULL. This will help us give NaNrescued cats to starving children.Sincerely,Error Division by Zero
    • 9. Why?! Make the pain stop, please! No automated prevention systems No data Little or poor hygiene training policiesNo Culture of “Clean Dirty Historical data import Data” data!
    • 10. Time for your cleanse!1. Strategy2. Accountability3. Data Quality Reports/Dashboards4. Automation: Validation and Workflow Rules5. Help Your Users6. Objects and Fields7. Apps
    • 11. 1: StrategyIt’s as easy as one, two, five
    • 12. Strategy• How does data serve your mission?• Does data jeopardize your mission? – What should always/never happen?• A good strategy means: – A culture of good data – Practices & process survive staff turnover – Tools, objects, and fields change – but data stays clean
    • 13. Baby StepsToday: Sit down with intern, explain data rules, document rules for next timeThis week: Create validation ruleThis month: Review reports with your E.D.This year: Decrease duplicates by 90%. Mailing files should take no more than an hour to prepare.This decade: Make sure data is never a barrier to growth. 50,000 more meals served, 10,000 duplicates removed
    • 14. 2: AccountabilityWe have met the enemy, and they are us
    • 15. Accountability: A Clean Data Culture• Who is responsible for data? – Board and Leadership • Support the culture, drive data priorities, give rewards & accolades – IT / Salesforce staff • Integrations, data sources. Training and “data ambassadors.” – Directors • Responsible for team’s data – Staff • Fundraisers, interns, accounting: responsible for data they own or touch.
    • 16. Accountability Tactics• Appoint a “data czar” (coach)• Public dashboards / reports• Topic in regular staff meetings• Leadership: “If its not in Salesforce it doesnt exist.”• Section in annual report / board reports• “Data Day” : all staff works on data cleanup• Identify champions & coaches
    • 17. Rewards & Punishments• Wall of fame / wall of shame• Data Rockstar / Data Dunce• Competition and/or collaboration• Show me the $$ – Amazon / Starbucks cards – PTO… – Bonuses
    • 18. Adoption Dashboardshttps://appexchange.salesforce.com/listingDetail?listingId=a0N30000004gHhLEAU
    • 19. 3: Reports &DashboardsOooo… shiny!
    • 20. Data Quality Reports/Dashboards http://www.flickr.com/photos/smallbrainfield/381731208/
    • 21. Create “Missing Data” Reports! http://www.flickr.com/photos/katiethebeau/8387139427/
    • 22. Data Quality Reports – regulars!
    • 23. Cross Filters are your friends!
    • 24. Use the “without” filter when looking for missing infohttp://www.salesforce.com/us/developer/docs/workbook_analytics/workbook_analytics.pdf
    • 25. Schedule Reports and Dashboards!
    • 26. What are your “must have” fields? Try using images in formula fields!http://assets.salesforce.com/pdf/getting_started_with_images_v1.pdf
    • 27. Anything owned by inactive users?INACTIVE
    • 28. Mass Transfer Toolhttps://na11.salesforce.com/ui/setup/own/BulkTransferPage
    • 29. Data Quality Analysis Dashboardshttps://appexchange.salesforce.com/listingDetail?listingId=a0N300000016cshEAA
    • 30. 4: AutomationWe welcome our new validation andworkflow rule overlords
    • 31. Validation RULES!• Before a record is saved: 1. Check for bad things 2. Inform the user what’s wrong• Automatically! Works for integrations tooError: Invalid DataReview all error messages below to correct yourdataYou must solicit user feedback about yourvalidation rules
    • 32. Validation Rule ideas• Dates – End before Start – Too far in the future / past• Conditionally required fields – Per record type – Per status or picklist option• At least… – 2 letters in First Name, Last Name – $5 for Donation value
    • 33. Internship Validation Rule: Job End Date can’tbe more than 1 year in the future!
    • 34. Validation Rule tips…• Combine with formula fields for more powerful cross-object validation• Check old data after you create a new rule! – Bad data will remain unless record is edited – Keep your report for this, re-use periodically to double check• Let your data guide you – Don’t go rule crazy• Don’t reinvent the wheel. Ideas: – http://login.salesforce.com/help/doc/en/fields_ useful_field_validation_formulas.htm
    • 35. Validation GoldilocksToo many validation rules? No data entered, user rebellionNot enough required fields / validation rules? Bad dataJust right Less new bad data Happy users deem you: “Data Hero”
    • 36. Automation: Workflow Rules:It’s like having your own robot!
    • 37. What can they do? Update fields Create tasks Send emails Send outbound messages
    • 38. Workflow Rule Process Create Rule Criteria Action Activate Adopt Profit!
    • 39. Create Workflow Rule
    • 40. FieldUpdate
    • 41. EmailAlert
    • 42. Task
    • 43. Some Data Quality workflow ideas! Update Opportunity Name to “Account – Donation Type – Date” Update a custom date field whenever the Owner is Changed. Create a task to review a Contact if it hasn’t been modified in over a year. Send an email if someone enters a donation missing some key info.https://help.salesforce.com/HTViewHelpDoc?id=workflow_examples.htm&language=en_US
    • 44. Workflow Gotchas –Consistent Processes? http://www.flickr.com/photos/rakka/420157350/
    • 45. Workflow Gotchas –Documentation? http://www.flickr.com/photos/nzdave/491411288/
    • 46. Workflow Gotchas – Test first! http://www.flickr.com/photos/gywst/1426287043/
    • 47. Workflow gotchas: Last in line! http://www.flickr.com/photos/sarae/2465725950/
    • 48. 5: Help Your UsersHelp your users help you to helpthemselves
    • 49. Help text (almost) EVERYWHERE!Help people at the point of entering info.Afterwards…it’s too late.
    • 50. Simplify! Relentlessly remove crap! Crap Crap Crap
    • 51. Rename standard objects and fields
    • 52. Organize Report/Dashboard Folders GOOD  BAD 
    • 53. Create Screencasts!• Record once, use multiple times – While it’s still fresh in your mind!• Jing – http://www.techsmith.com/jing.html• Camtasia – http://www.techsmith.com/camtasia.html• Screenr – http://www.screenr.com/• ScreenSteps – http://www.bluemangolearning.com/screensteps/
    • 54. 6: Data ModelFields of Dreams
    • 55. Data Model ChangesSimplify simplify simplify• Delete records you don’t use• Delete objects you don’t use• Delete fields you don’t use• Hide what you don’t use but can’t deleteThen, let Salesforce do the work for you• Convert field types for maximum data cleaning benefit
    • 56. Objects• Remove (seldom) used tabs for users – And related lists• Check relationships – To and Fro – 100%? 99%? 2% filled in? – Filter by Record Type• Records owned by inactive users?• Records un-modified for 1+ years• Records not related to anything
    • 57. FieldsRemove unused / under used fields (< 5% filled in)Adding one? Take one away!Use Date, Date/Time, Email, Phone, Percent, an d URL
    • 58. Field Type Changes• Textareas? Only if absolutely necessary• Few unique values in a text field? – Convert to picklists / checkboxes• Multi-select Picklists – Great for creating reporting headaches. – Try checkboxes instead?
    • 59. 7: AppsJust apps. Nothing snarky.
    • 60. Apps! Diagnostics & Utilities• CloudFixer • Diagnostic report of common problems (and their solutions) for Salesforce, NPSP, Common Ground • https://cloudfixer.co• FieldTrip • Standard and custom field usage • https://appexchange.salesforce.com/listingD etail?listingId=a0N30000003HSXEEA4
    • 61. Apps! Diagnostics & Utilities• Easy Describe • View and extract object metadata • http://www.etherios.com/products/easydescribe• Grid Buddy • https://appexchange.salesforce.com/listingDetail?listingId=a0N30 000003IkInEAK • Data entry & editing across objects, en masse!• Dupe Blocker • http://www.crmfusion.com/dupeblocker
    • 62. Apps! ETL / Heavy Lifting• Demand Tools – http://www.crmfusion.com/demandtools/ – Duplicate formulas and much much more…• Apsona – http://apsona.com/pages/sfdc/index.html• Jitterbit – http://www.jitterbit.com/salesforce/data-loader• Apex Data Loader / LexiLoader – Setup -> Admin Setup -> Data Management -> Data Loader
    • 63. Business IntelligenceFancy toys to play with when your data is all clean!• Birst – http://www.birst.com/• Good Data – http://www.gooddata.com/• Crystal Reports
    • 64. How did that feel?1. Strategy2. Accountability3. Data Quality Reports/Dashboards4. Automation: Validation and Workflow Rules5. Helping Our Users6. Data Model7. Apps for cleaning
    • 65. Contact us! We can help• Ehren Foss / CloudFixer – https://cloudfixer.co – ehren@cloudfixer.co – @ehrenfoss• Marc Baizman / MCG Training – http://mcgtraining.com – marc@mcgtraining.com – @mbaizman
    • 66. We Love Feedback• How was the webinar?• Which area do you think is most important for you?• What is clean data worth to you?

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