Wouldn’t it be terrific if you could simplify the management of profiles, permissions, and permission sets and their assignments? Depending on the size of your org, you might have dozens of profiles and permission sets. Along with your other administration duties, dealing with the quantity of related permissions can seem challenging, too. Well, an option to make your life easier exists in the form of the Profile and Permission Set Helper.
I spoke with Product Manager Sharon Liao to learn how to leverage a new tool that converts permissions in a profile into a permission set. Sharon has been with Salesforce since 2016. Before joining the Platform Products team, she lead transformation of the Help portal and customer case logging experience. She is passionate about advancing profile and permission set features to better serve administrators’ needs.
Ready to learn more about the Profile and Permission Set Helper? Check out my conversation with Sharon below!
Gina Blednyh: Hi Sharon! I’m eager to use this feature, especially since my org has many profiles with similar permissions. Tell me how this feature makes my life easier. Why wouldn’t I just continue using the profiles and permissions sets that I have?
Sharon Liao: Depending on what your org looks like and what licenses you have, you can continue using the profiles and permission sets you already have. However, being able to convert a profile’s permissions directly into a permission set is really useful in some cases. For example, you might have users assigned to the Standard User profile. The thing is, these users might need many of the permissions in that profile, but not all of them. You could convert the Standard User profile into a permission set, remove the permissions from the permission set that aren’t required by your target users, and assign another user license to them. This frees up the user license associated with the Standard User profile for your other users. Oh, and of course, make sure to assign the new permission set to the users!
GB: This sounds very useful. How many steps does it involve? I don’t want to make processes more complex.
SL: Only a few clicks. You click once to create an assignable permission set based on the profile you selected, give it a name, delete (or add) permissions to it, and assign the new permission set to users.
GB: That does sound simple. I have custom profiles created. Can I use this tool with them as well, or can I only use it with standard profiles?
SL: You can use the tool with both standard and custom profiles.
GB: Terrific. Are there cases where either I wouldn’t want to convert a profile to a permission set, or where it won’t work as expected?
SL: Yes. We will continue to improve this tool, but there are some limitations to keep in mind for now. A permission set generated from a profile can contain permission settings for entities that aren’t supported in other licenses. If this is the case, you need to manually remove them before you can assign them to users with the target license. For example, let’s say you generate a permission set based on the Standard User profile. The Standard User profile is available with the Salesforce license and contains many permissions. If you attempt to assign this permission set to a user with a Chatter Free User profile, you’ll have to remove the permissions not offered with a Chatter Free license; if you don’t, you’ll receive an error message when you attempt to assign the permission set to that user.
Another example is if you’re using the app to support user license switching. Remember to change the associated license before you assign the converted permission set to users. This is because reassigning user licenses removes all permissions from a user.
Also, keep in mind that permission sets don’t control record types or tab visibility, since that’s limited to the profile. So if you do create a permission set from a profile, note that those settings won’t transfer.
GB: What happens to the profile after I convert it into a permission set? And, what happens to users assigned to the profile who should continue to use it? I might not want all users with a specific profile to receive the permissions in the converted permission set.
SL: The profile remains available to use. Users assigned to the profile remain assigned to it until you reassign them to other profiles.
GB: I like that. This gives me granular control over the process and makes it easy for me to setup users with the exact permissions that they need in a clean way.
SL: I agree!
GB: How can I get this tool?
SL: From the AppExchange. Look for “Profile and Permission Set Helper.” Once you install it in your org, you can find it in the App Launcher when using Lightning Experience. Click the app icon in your org to see a list of profiles available to convert. You can filter the profiles by profile name, license type, or custom profiles.
GB: Thanks Sharon!
Do you want to see how you can convert your org’s profile permissions to permission sets for yourself? We encourage you to download the app and try it. Let us know what you think, too. We’re pretty certain you’ll appreciate the flexibility that this tool offers to administrators.