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As key aspects of your data lifecycle management, your backup and archiving strategies could lead to more-efficient and cost-effective Salesforce environments.


To accelerate their digital transformation strategy, numerous organizations have moved to SaaS applications and cloud storage. These SaaS applications and cloud storage enable organizations to create and retain more data than ever before. When moving to SaaS and cloud storage, you should consider the best modern backup and archiving strategies. 

Why You Should Backup AND Archive Salesforce Data?

The main purpose of backup and recovery is data protection. You need to be able to restore data that is lost or corrupted as soon as possible to maintain business continuity. For example, if your archive policy is incorrectly implemented, you should be able to restore any incorrectly deleted data from your backups.

Meanwhile, archiving is meant to help your business meet applicable regulatory requirements, reduce storage costs, increase employee productivity, and improve executive decision making. 

What Is a Backup vs. an Archive?

A backup is a copy of your entire Salesforce production or sandbox environment that can be used to quickly restore in the event of accidental data loss or corruption caused by human error, rogue integrations, bad code, or malicious intent. A comprehensive backup and recovery strategy requires a full backup of your data, metadata, schema, and attachments. Backups are meant to be stored in cold, semi-available, low-cost storage.

An archive includes historical, rarely-used Salesforce data that has been entirely removed from your Salesforce environments. Upon archival, the data is moved to long-term retention to be used for future reference. Archiving is about selecting subsets of data from production environments to move to external, long-term storage. Archives are meant to be kept in warm, available, low cost, storage. It’s not necessary to include metadata in your archives, but metadata protection is highly-recommended for backups.

An archive does not replace the need for a backup, and vice versa.

How Often Should You Backup and Archive?

Backups should be completed daily or multiple times per day for highly-critical, frequently-changing objects.

Archiving can be done less frequently, depending on the data retention policy requirements placed on each object. For the majority of companies this would occur monthly, quarterly, or semi-annually.

Who Should Have Access to Backups and Archives?

Only certain admins, IT, or security users should be able to access your organization’s Salesforce backups. Access is generally infrequent, only when you need to restore.

Unlike backups, archives should be available to specific users, preferably directly within the associated Salesforce records. This is entirely depending on your organization’s users and use cases. In most cases, users should be allowed to easily unarchive records within Salesforce. 

Admins should be able to create and manage archiving policies that automatically archive data, following your company’s data retention policy requirements. These admins should make sure that whenever data is archived parent/child record and attachment relationships are being maintained in case the data ever needs to be brought back into production.

Accelerate Your Salesforce Backup, Recovery, and Archiving Strategy with OwnBackup

Archiving Salesforce data helps organizations effectively comply with internal and external access and retention policies, reduce storage usage, and increase productivity. It’s also complimentary to your backup strategy and broader data protection activities.

Watch the Best Practices for Salesforce Data Lifecycle Management webinar to learn more about how to develop a data retention policy for Salesforce with OwnBackup Archiver.

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