An audit trail is a chronological and detailed record where project details, accounting records, or other financial data are tracked and traced. An audit trail is often a regulatory requirement in many financial areas. Every business should have audits, even when not mandated for a thorough and organized accounting department. Administrators can verify and track transactions, accounting details, work processes, trades in brokerage accounts, and more with audit trails.
Salesforce, a cloud-based CRM tool, also has a feature called audit trail Salesforce that helps companies track recent setup changes made by users to your organization. This guide will help you understand what audit trail Salesforce is, and how you can set up audit trails in Salesforce. Read on to learn the benefits of an audit trail, different types of audit trails in Salesforce, and setting up audit trails Salesforce.
Table of Contents
- Prerequisites for Understanding Audit Trail Salesforce
- What is Salesforce?
- What is an Audit Trail?
- Benefits of Audit Trail
- What is Audit Trail Salesforce?
- Different Types of Audit Trail in Salesforce
- How to Set Up Audit Trail Salesforce?
Prerequisites for Understanding Audit Trail Salesforce
To gain maximum benefit from this guide, a basic and operational understanding of Salesforce CRM would be helpful.
What is Salesforce?
Salesforce is a cloud-based CRM tool that provides software and services focused on Sales, Customer Service, Marketing Automation, Analytics, and Application Development to small and large businesses. It started as Software-as-a-service (SaaS) and now offers a multi-tenant architecture with benefits such as configuration, scalability, API Integration, low-cost ownership, platform support, and more.
Salesforce is one of the best Customer Relationship Management (CRM) service providers that has AI-based capabilities for Financing, Marketing Automation, Human Resource Management, etc. Salesforce CRM also offers a personalized experience through its Customer 360 Platform. Some of the essential products offered by Salesforce are:
- Salesforce Service Cloud: Offers all the tools that users might need to strengthen Customer Engagement. It allows you to support customer interactions across each channel, automate business processes with intelligent workflows, get actionable insights into customer interactions, and drive revenue with AI-powered tools.
- Salesforce Analytics: With Tableau, users can leverage intuitive drag-and-drop analysis. It also allows you to share insights across teams and quickly spot visual patterns to drive growth.
- Salesforce Commerce Cloud: This allows users to convert customers by offering personalized buying experiences. Marketing teams can quickly implement new strategies with easy-to-use tools, allowing them to stay agile and start generating a higher ROI.
- Salesforce AppExchange: An enterprise cloud marketplace where companies can find proven experts and apps to help them solve business challenges. This section also has app guides to help you zero in on the right solutions to suit your unique business challenges.
To learn more about Salesforce products and services, visit our in-depth guides here:
- Top Salesforce Products to Amplify your Business Efficacy in 2022
- Salesforce Service Cloud: 5 Critical Features
- Salesforce Analytics: 4 Critical Aspects
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What is an Audit Trail?
An audit trail is a time and date-stamped sequential record of details of financial transactions, work events, product development phase, or financial ledger entries. Different fields in the report will have various forms to capture their unique focus areas. Still, the overarching purpose is to track a sequence of events and actions in chronological order.
Benefits of Audit Trail
Audit trails help businesses better control what is happening inside the company. The record-keeping of an audit trail quickly flags any financial inconsistencies within an industry. An audit trail discourages internal fraud, as employees know admins can quickly uncover their actions. Additionally, companies can reduce external fraud by maintaining tight controls over access and a solid defensive barrier to help prevent cybersecurity breaches.
Investment and Loan Positioning
A savvy investor will evaluate whether to put money into a company. To place your business for loans or investors, proposing individuals with accurate financials that they can easily check via an audit trail will build trust in your business and its integrity.
Users can quickly examine a comprehensive and accessible audit trail, saving time and increasing efficiency. The historical record can help find information that’s buried in your books. For example, if you need to find a particular transaction, an audit trail can uncover all of the transaction’s data. Audit trails also track everything surrounding a transaction to capture all corrections and save business time with fewer corrections and versioning required.
Meeting Compliance Requirements
Every industry has widely varying regulations in terms of compliance standards. You can avoid potential loss of business, incurred fines, and lost contracts by staying ahead of audit trail requirements.
In an unexpected crisis, an audit trail is like insurance. You don’t need audits for everyday operations, but you’ll be happy to have them in case of data loss or other issues. An audit trail would be a reliable record of your business costs. Ensure that your audit trail Salesforce is backed up somewhere safe and off-site.
What is Audit Trail Salesforce?
Audit trail Salesforce helps you track the recent setup changes you and other administrators have made to your organization. The Setup Audit Trail Salesforce history shows you the 20 most recent setup changes made to your organization.
The audit trail Salesforce feature enables users to track changes made by employees of the organization closely. This feature can record all modifications concerning the customization, security, administration, data management, development, sharing, and more of your company’s Salesforce account.
Audit trail Salesforce comes in handy when multiple administrators are managing your Salesforce environment. With this, you can easily maintain a list of changes made in the past six months. The audit trail Salesforce will create an exportable sheet with data like who made the change, when the changes were made, and information on what was changed. It is available at Salesforce Classic, Lightning Experience, Essentials, Group, Contact Manager, Professional, Performance, Enterprise, Unlimited, Database.com Editions, and Developer.
The Setup Audit Trail Salesforce provides users with a reasonably voluminous amount of information, but it only stores the data for 180 days. This means that auditors cannot see changes beyond the 180-day timeframe, forcing auditors to store older data elsewhere. The major problem with the audit trail Salesforce is that while you can see the changes in your organization, it doesn’t show if they were reviewed or approved, a critical detail for auditors who want to ensure that all sensitive changes follow an appropriate process.
There are two types of audit trails in Salesforce:
- Basic Audit Trail: Basic Audit Trail Salesforce is available for all accounts and has a 30 days retention period. You can audit the events like changes to users, user permissions, roles, and security settings for all users. Users can also audit user authentication and IP addresses.
- Advanced Audit Trail: The Advanced Audit Trail Salesforce is available for contact Marketing, Cloud, and Executive accounts. It has a 60-day retention period. Users can audit events like marketing cloud setup, email studio, mobile push, Google Analytics integration, automation studio, mobile connect, and cloud pages.
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Different Types of Audit Trail in Salesforce
Here are the types of audit trails that you can perform in Salesforce:
Setup Audit Trail
The Setup Audit Trail Salesforce feature allows administrators and users to view setup or configurations. With this, you can download the audit trail for your organization over six months.
The Salesforce Login history tells you all about users logging into Salesforce.com, whether successful with the login or a failure. The Salesforce admin can monitor the login attempts to Salesforce.org. It is also possible for the user to download the information on a GZIP file or a CSV file. The Login History comes in handy for general login records and other details such as Authentication Method Reference.
Field History Tracking
The Field History Tracking helps users capture information on changes made to the fields. Users can track changes for up to 20 standard and custom fields on an object, which you can only view with history reports or record history-related issues. However, the user must enable the field history tracking for the fields and use Salesforce Metadata API for a retention policy for field history.
Record Modification Fields
When a record is created or updated, Salesforce automatically logs in the current and previous user details that modified the record.
How to Set Up Audit Trail Salesforce?
The audit trail feature is not enabled by default in Salesforce. Users can enable this by following the instructions or by asking their Salesforce support for assistance.
Follow these steps to create and automate an audit trail in Salesforce:
Step 1: Add a Marketing Cloud SFTP Account to create a safe house to securely store your audit data.
Step 2: Create an Audit Trail Data Extract Activity to extract your audit data and prepare it for file transfer.
Step 3: Create a File Transfer Activity to transfer your audit data to the secure Safe House, which you can access via FTP.
Step 4: Create automation to automatically run the data extract and file extract activities. It will send your audit data to your secure Marketing Cloud Safehouse, which will be accessible via FTP using the credentials from Step 1.
In this blog, you learned how the audit trail Salesforce could improve guarding against fraud and protecting your business from painful, protracted manual auditing processes. Audit trails in Salesforce offer the means for companies to backtrack a vast array of problems associated with access, information security, and system optimization. It allows companies to balance system protection and operational performance at appropriate industry levels.
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