Salesforce Duplicate Management: Dirty Data Handled Well!

Salesforce Duplicate Management: Dirty Data Handled Well!

If you have dirty data, your Salesforce Cadillac has the potential to bring your entire organization to a screeching halt. Fabricating business decisions based on dirty data can lead to errors and misled projections and faulty forecasts that carve the path to exponential downfall of the ROI of the application.
Duplicate Management thankfully comes to the rescue of dirty data. There is plethora of applications available for free of cost in AppExchange to support this situation. Earlier DupeCatcher was a thriving duplicate management tool but with myriad upgrades and enhancements around Salesforce in the recent times, and it popped up with an out of the box feature Duplicate Management with similar properties, under Data.com. However, it is not mandatory to bear a Data.com license for it.

DupeCatcher vs. Duplicate Management:

While DupeCatcher was the most favourable option but it has not been updated for a while and it will be surpassed eventually. Throwing a comparison between Duplicate Management and DupeCatcher we come across the following vital facts:

  • When it comes to Salesforce1 app Duplicate Management has an upper hand.
  • Duplicate Management also teams well with Salesforce for Outlook.
  • It has a finer duplicate reporting and alert.
  • It has its own set of duplicate management rules for mass data loader.

Setting Up Duplicate Management in Salesforce:

Duplicate Management in Salesforce needs two separate rules: a matching rule and a duplication rule. The former defines how the records are compared amongst each other to mark the possible duplicates whereas the latter instructs Salesforce what action to take when the duplicates are identified.

To set up Duplicate Management navigate to:
Setup –> Data.com Administration → Duplicate Management.

It is available in the Professional, Enterprise, Performance, Unlimited, and Developer Editions.

Matching Rules:

For accessing the Matching Rules in Salesforce navigate through:
Data.com Administration → Duplicate Management → Matching Rules.

To be precise each and every matching rule comprises of multiple matching criteria related to an individual field. The matching criterion basically defines all the conditions that need to be implemented for a particular field. The comparison is done by making use of fuzzy matching methods that are comprised of a number of matching algorithms. However, Data.com gives the provision of standard matching rules on standard objects like Account, Contact, Lead, etc. But in the majority of the cases, you need to create your own set of matching rules based on the sole requirement of your organization.

To create and edit custom matching rules you need to follow the steps below:

  • After login go to Setup and type Matching Rules in the Quick find, then select the Matching Rules.
  • If you are planning on editing an existing rule then start by first inactivating that rule.
  • Click New Rule or Edit next to the existing rule as per the demand of the situation.
  • In the next step you have to select the object on which the matching rule should be applied.
  • Next you have to enter the name and the description of the rule you created in the respective text boxes provided.
  • The next vital step is entering the matching criteria. (The matching criteria is where you define what are the fields which need to be compared and how that comparison has to be carried out. To add more fields possible up till 10 in total click on Add Filter Logic and then add row.
  • Incase there is a requirement to alter any matching equation click on Add Filter Logic. This option allows you to manually change any expression maybe from an AND to an OR expression, vice- versa, etc.
  • Save the Rule.
  • Finally activate the Rule. The activation process might be a little time consuming so you will receive an acknowledgement mail upon completion and activation of your matching rule.

Duplicate Rules:

To access the Duplicate Rule in Salesforce we need to navigate through the following path:
Data.com Administration→ Duplicate Management → Duplicate Rules.

Once the matching rule is activated the duplicate rule comes into play. As mentioned earlier a matching rule decides whether or not a record created is redundant whereas the duplicate rule dictates Salesforce what action to trigger when such a case has been identified. Uses should have custom application permission before creating new duplicate rules. While defining a new duplicate rule you need to enter the rule details which involve record-level security as well as field mapping for each and every field that has been marked by matching rules. It also gives you the provision to define entry criteria for the rule if it is associated with a particular set of records.

  • Login and go to Setup. Type in Duplicate Rules in the Quick find box and select it.
  • To make edit in a rule that already exists, click on the rule name and select Edit. Incase you want to create a new rule click on New Rule, and then select the object on which the rule needs to be applied.
  • Enter rule details which include other vital statistics like rule name, record level security settings and description.
  • Next you have to select which action should be triggered while an attempt is made to save a duplicate record. If it involves pop up of an alert message then you can customize it as per your requirement, but that is possible only if you have chosen the Allow option.
  • Subsequently in the Matching Rules section select the objects that the records will be compared with and choose which matching rule will determine how duplicates are marked. In case none of the matching rules in the list match then create a new Matching Rule.
  • Ensure that you’ve selected the entire field mapping for each and every matching rule, if needed.
  • Specify the conditions, if you want your duplicate rule to execute only if specific conditions are met.
  • Save the rule.
  • Activate the rule. However for the activation to be successful all the mapped matching rules must be active.
  • If there is more than one active duplicate rule for a particular object then you have to take care to adjust the order in which the rules are unleashed, this can be carried out by clicking on Reorder from any rule’s detail page.

Duplicate Management has been a fresh breeze in the Salesforce world this year. If you aren’t using any redundancy prevention tool as of now in your enterprise then activate it as soon as possible and if there is something similar you are using then draw a comparison chart between both and determine what is the best approach for you.
References: kouponmedia, adminhero, appirio

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Pratyush Kumar

Pratyush Kumar

Co-Founder & Director at Algoworks, Open-Source | Salesforce | ECM
Pratyush is Co-Founder and Director at Algoworks. He is responsible for managing, growing open source technologies team and has spearheaded more than 200 projects in Salesforce CRM alone. He provides consulting and advisory to clients looking for services relating to CRM(Customer Relationship Management) and ECM(Enterprise Content Management). In the past, Pratyush has held consulting roles with various global technology leaders, such as Globallogic & HCL in India. He holds an Engineering graduate degree from Indian Institute of Technology, Roorkee.
Pratyush Kumar

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