Cloudy with a megaphone next to text that says, "How to Advocate for Availability in Your Org."

How to Advocate for Availability in Your Org


Over the last 14 years in the Salesforce ecosystem, one of the topics talked about least has been maybe one of the most important ones: availability. Availability is a topic not too many people get excited about—that is, until availability is negatively impacted. But with a little thoughtful design, implementation, and eye toward maintaining your org with best practices in mind, you can prevent many availability incidents that affect your users’ experience.

What is availability?

Availability is generally defined as the percentage of time a service successfully handles requests. Salesforce measures and tracks this percentage to make sure our servers and services are highly available to every customer. While server and service availability is critical to Salesforce, even more important to us is customer-experienced availability. This type of availability is how you and your users experience Salesforce. For example, can users log in to your org? Are data integrations populating fields? Are imports successfully loading?

Customer-experienced availability is tricky to measure since every org, every user, and every company is unique. A user’s experienced availability can also vary greatly depending on many factors, such as implementation design, geographic region, and network connection. Despite the variability and unknown factors that can affect an org’s availability, Salesforce considers availability a top priority as part of our core value of Trust.

Why should I care about availability?

Availability, or lack thereof, affects everyone: you, your users, and your company. A highly available org means your users are able to continue their responsibilities while supporting your company’s growth. An org that performs poorly or has unreliable service creates frustrations and, in extreme cases, could financially or reputationally affect a company.

As an admin, you’re in the unique position of being the first one to hear about issues affecting a user’s Salesforce experience. You’re also likely the one investigating the cause and helping a user continue their daily work during unexpected downtime or service disruptions. This means time that could be spent being an #AwesomeAdmin is now spent fighting fires or bandaging for a quick fix.

What are common issues that affect availability?

Over the last 14 years in the Salesforce ecosystem, I’ve observed and found common anti-patterns that affect an org’s availability the most. As an admin, be on the lookout for:

  • Org designs that don’t consider the possibility of downtime or failure for business-critical processes. For example, your org requires address validation for a user to create an account and check out. Due to an issue with a flow, the address validation fails and the user can’t create an account or check out.
  • And speaking of flows, inefficient flow logic that unexpectedly and repeatedly loops through record updates, causing degraded performance for users.
  • Mixing process automation, such as using Apex triggers, Process Builder, and Flow all at once.
  • How and when your org deploys changes into production. Avoid making multiple manual changes in Setup during peak traffic hours to avoid server capacity usages, and consider safer release processes, such as DevOps Center.
  • Lack of monitoring and alerting when an issue occurs and no indication where the issue is found.
  • A “fix it first” mentality involving several team members when incidents do occur. First, prioritize recovering services for users. Then have your team investigate and fix the root cause issue. Oftentimes incidents don’t need an “all hands on deck” approach to be resolved.

How can I advocate for availability in my role?

Although Salesforce invests heavily to support availability, it’s only half of the availability picture. The other half is you. We rely on customers to partner with us and use best practices and recommendations when designing and maintaining their orgs. You, as an admin, can help advocate for availability in several ways:

  • Be curious about your org and its design. Does IT receive an alert if a user encounters an error? Is business-level data backed up regularly? Would your org scale if your company size doubled tomorrow?
  • Ask questions, even if you can’t personally solve them—asking your team and stakeholders about these questions will encourage others to look at the problem from different perspectives, and work together to resolve any risks or issues.
  • Stay up to date on best practices using Salesforce Help. If you can’t find an answer there, check out the Trailblazer Community.
  • Keep learning. Use Trailhead to familiarize yourself with topics that may seem out of your purview.

Where do I learn more about availability?

To improve customer-experienced availability, we recently launched Salesforce Availability. This website covers popular topics and resources to help you understand ongoing efforts to maintain and improve availability. In addition, we also launched Availability Help and Training, a new resource that discusses availability best practices in more detail. We’re also working closely with Well-Architected to ensure these concepts are well-embedded into one framework for all Salesforce professionals to follow. Be on the lookout as we roll out tools and resources to help improve availability in the near future.


Cloudy standing underneath text that says "Deliver Success as a Salesforce Admin."

Deliver Success as a Salesforce Admin

Salesforce Admins deliver value to their organizations every day through the core skills they develop on the path of becoming an admin. At a time when many businesses face critical challenges and tightening budgets, admins are essential for driving efficiency and productivity through their core responsibilities. As an admin, you drive success for your organization […]

5 tips for getting started with data cloud.

5 Tips for Getting Started with Data Cloud

As an admin, you’ve probably heard of Data Cloud, but maybe you haven’t prioritized it right away because you have other company challenges to address. Well, now’s the time to move Data Cloud to the top and dig in. If you’re thinking, “What is Data Cloud? Can you break it down for me?”, you’re in […]

Upgrade to Hyperforce with Confidence Using Hyperforce Assistant

Upgrade to Hyperforce with Confidence Using Hyperforce Assistant

Demystifying Hyperforce for admins As a Salesforce Admin, you might be wondering, what is Hyperforce? Put simply, Hyperforce is Salesforce’s new public cloud-based infrastructure designed to support Salesforce services for the future. A cloud-native architecture, Hyperforce will replace our existing first-party infrastructure and provide significant benefits to our customers, including data residency, enhanced security, availability, […]