Happy New Year from Attain Partners! As we welcome in 2020, we are busy reviewing all the great new features in the Salesforce Spring ‘20 release and trying them out in our preview sandboxes. Read on to learn about some of the features we are most excited about for Higher Ed.
Salesforce Data Mask
This is a great new element to keep your student personally identifiable information (PII) safe in sandboxes. You’ll no longer need a third-party tool or manual method to obfuscate or remove sensitive data from a sandbox. Align your institution with data records recommendations from the Department of Ed’s Data Governance Checklist by de-identifying PII whenever possible.
You will need to install a managed package to use this feature. You can find the install link as well as some important prerequisites here. Once installed, there is a good deal of flexibility in how you’d like to configure the data mask which is applied to each field that needs masking. Final note on this topic—you can even run this against sandboxes that were created prior to the installation!
API Limits Increase
Most of our Higher Ed clients have multiple integrations to achieve a 360-degree student view. Spring ‘20 offers one less worry about hitting Application Programing Interface (API) limits with a default increase to 100,000. The maximum daily cap has been removed as well. This limit is just one number in the total calculation, so you can view the new limit for your organization by going to the Company Information page in Setup and viewing the data under “API Requests, Last 24 Hours” in a Spring ‘20 org.
If you’re like many of our Higher Ed clients relying on flows for automation, Spring ‘20 brings flow features that make performance improvements easy for admins. The “before-save” update is being marketed as performing 10 times faster than a process builder update. “Before-save” means we can consolidate all changes made to a record into one transaction to reduce overhead. If you have been experiencing slowness saving or errors with your process builders/flows, try out this new option.
Two other flow building time-savers are (1) on a Get Record element there is now an option to automatically save all fields, and (2) Action and Create Records elements no longer require you to manually create the variables. Less manual work is always a win.
Custom Metadata Types
If you’ve started to rely on Custom Metadata Types over the last couple years like we have, there is a critical update with the Spring release of which you need to be aware. Metadata types now require explicit access granted to a profile or permission set. Do a quick assessment on where your metadata types are being used and who needs access. If access is not granted they will lose it with this critical update.
EDA (Education Data Architecture) News
At the end of January, sandboxes are expected to see the long overdue additions of Application, Test, and Test Score objects in EDA. If you’re already using objects with the same names, don’t worry, when they are released to your EDA Salesforce instance, they will be included in the HED namespace. Keep your eye on the Power of Us hub for details.
What else is on the 2020 EDA roadmap? This year does seem to have a heavy K-12 focus as they look to branch out from Higher Ed. They will also be adding more translation support for our international friends. Finally, we are looking forward to getting more details on the “Integration Best Practice Model” that is in the works.
Registration is now open for Higher Ed Summit in Indianapolis from April 29-May 1. We love this annual opportunity to come together as a group to share digital transformation best practices and lessons learned. Stay tuned for Attain Partners’ list of presentations—We hope to see you there!
About the Author
Emily Cobb is a Principal Consultant at Attain Partners focused on helping Higher Ed clients implement and improve how they use Salesforce. Emily holds nine Salesforce Certifications, most recently earning Salesforce Application Architect. She has worked in various roles in Higher Ed Information Technology over the past 18 years with the past seven focusing on Salesforce.