Duplicate Management in SalesforcePoor data quality is one of the major reasons why users avoid using a system. Duplicate records fall in that category. And the last thing you want is for your users to question the validity of the data they rely on. Any Salesforce org is home to hundreds and thousands of records created by tens or hundreds of users. In such an environment, it is more than likely that users may create records that already exist. This will result in poor user experience and poor customer experience.

Thankfully, Salesforce has an out of the box feature to identify, alert and handle duplicate records. This is called “Duplicate Management”. The concept of duplicate management is fairly simple.

  1. Firstly, define a set of rules for identifying records as duplicate. This is called “Matching Rule“. You can use Salesforce out of the box rules (available on lead, account & contact) or create your own rules. 
  2. And secondly, define the rules on what should happen if the record is identified as a duplicate based on the matching rule. This is called “Duplicate Rule“. In this, you can choose to just warn the user and still allow them to create/edit the record or you can choose to block the user from creating /editing the record. 

While the above rules will help you identify the duplicate records at the time of adding/editing the record in real-time, you can use the following to report on the existing duplicates in the system

  1. Duplicate Record Sets
  2. Using Custom Report Types
  3. Running Duplicate Jobs (available only in Performance & Unlimited Editions)

Ok, that’s enough talk. Now let’s see this in action with this step-by-step guide

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  1. Trailhead Module – Duplicate Management (45 minutes) – https://trailhead.salesforce.com/content/learn/modules/sales_admin_duplicate_management
  2. Manage Duplicate Records (10 minutes) –  https://help.salesforce.com/articleView?id=managing_duplicates_overview.htm&type=5
  3. Manage Duplicates One at a Time (10 minutes) – https://help.salesforce.com/articleView?id=manage_individual_duplicate_records.htm&type=5
  4. Manage Duplicates Globally (5 minutes) – https://help.salesforce.com/articleView?id=manage_duplicates_globally.htm&type=5
  5. Customize Duplicate Management (5 minutes) – https://help.salesforce.com/articleView?id=duplicate_prevention_map_of_tasks.htm&type=5

Video URLs

  1. Take Control of Duplicates—Use Duplicate Rules and the Potential Duplicates Component (3:14 minutes) –  https://youtu.be/r2j5mwekX1s 
  2. Use Matching Rules to Hunt Down Duplicate Records (3:28 minutes) – https://youtu.be/zy0u5fKBft0