Archiving forms is a function used by those with a high volume of forms who are concerned about storage space, or in cases where an organization is sunsetting versions of a form for business process reasons. When a form is archived, its answers are no longer separate records in the Salesforce database. Remember, Forms originally exist as a single form record, many question records, and many answer records. For organizations that have long forms with many questions, and concerns about Salesforce data storage limitations, organizations can choose to archive forms, eliminating the Answer records to conserve data storage. This article takes you through the archiving and unarchiving process.
What Technically Happens When We Archive Forms?
As stated above, Forms usually exist as a Form record, and many Answer records. The Answer records each house the information from each answer in the form.
When we choose to archive forms, Youreka deletes the Answer records, and memorializes the responses on the Form page only. Archived forms can still be viewed in Salesforce, and all of their answers can be seen on the Form Detail Visualforce page.
But what about all of those Answer records?
The answer is, Youreka deletes them, and compresses their information into a handful of long text fields on the Form record. These long text fields contain JSON formatted information from the Answer records, ultimately preserving the Answer record data, but without taking up Salesforce data storage. See the GIF below to observe this process taking place.
When forms are archived, all of those Answer records are compiled into those text fields. When forms are unarchived, the exact opposite happens. Be unarchiving a form, Youreka takes the information from the long text fields, and creates Answer records for the Form.
As a result of archiving, the Form can be reviewed in Salesforce, but the Answers to the form can no longer be reported upon. Because of this, organizations should consider how much Salesforce data storage they have, how much they will need in the future, and how far back they are interested in preserving form data. The answers to these questions help you to determine a responsible schedule for archiving forms (or if you even need to archive forms at all)
Archive Forms Manually or With Salesforce Automation
Technically speaking, the archiving process is triggered by toggling the Archived checkbox on the Form object. When users check the Archived checkbox, the Answer records are deleted and the JSON text information is added to the Form record. When users uncheck the Archived checkbox, the Answer records are restored and the JSON text is deleted.
You can manually archive forms by selecting the Gear Icon on the Form Detail page and clicking Archive (see image above). Similarly users can also check the Archived checkbox on a Form page layout, or Form List View.
Consider using Workflow Rules, Process Builder, Flow or Apex to automatically archive forms, based on your unique requirements.
Archive Forms Automatically with Form Lifecycle Settings
Use Youreka's Form Lifecycle Settings to systematically archive forms based on a schedule that makes sense for your organization. Visit any Form Template in Salesforce, click the Pencil Icon, and set the number of days after submission that you would like your forms to auto archive. These settings are applied on a nightly batch job that Youreka runs in your Salesforce org. Each night, any form that should be archived is automatically archived.