SmartCloud Connect Synchronization: An Overview¶
The core data synchronization process described in this article is not to be confused with the toggleable SmartCloud Connect features – auto-sharing (auto-syncing) of every new email or event, or auto-saving of new messages in selected correspondence threads. Those features are carried out by this process and if synchronization is not set up or is suspended, these features will not work. Please also refer to this comparison article to learn about the scope of functions performed by the Sync Engine and the Add-In (or the Chrome Extension).
SmartCloud Connect Synchronization (SCC Sync Engine) is a recurrent background (server-side) process of two-way data exchange between your email account (on an MS Exchange, Office 365, or Gmail server) and your Salesforce account, that SmartCloud Connect performs 24/7 to maintain data mirroring between your email/calendar items and their matching Salesforce objects, also considering your choices and actions in SmartCloud Connect Sidebar and your email client (via the dedicated category or folder). SCC Sync does not depend on whether SmartCloud Connect Add-In is opened in your email client. The data is transferred securely over industry standard TLS 1.3 encrypted protocol, and over the official and secure Salesforce API to/from your Salesforce account.
By default, SCC Sync is performed every 30 minutes; it runs regardless of whether SmartCloud Connect Sidebar or MS Outlook/other supported email client is opened or not, as server-to-server data exchange unnoticed by the users. Since data exchange is carried out between your email server and Salesforce server while your local email client and the Sidebar only serve to display email/calendar data and register your choices and actions, SCC Sync does not consume any noticeable amount of your local internet traffic.
The key aspects of synchronization process can be flexibly adjusted by the end users individually via Sync dashboard and SmartCloud Connect Customization page, or by the local admin via Admin settings. Synchronization can be manually suspended or forced to run sooner than the next scheduled session. It may also get suspended due to errors and monitored for troubleshooting.
Maintaining data mirroring is based on tables of matching fields mapped between MS Exchange/Office 365 calendar items/tasks/contacts and corresponding Salesforce objects. These mapping tables are used to compare the values in matching fields and transfer updated values from email server to Salesforce or vice versa, replacing old values in corresponding fields with actual ones. This ongoing data mirroring process has its specific exceptions and overriding patterns applied in certain cases as required by convenience of use considerations, e.g. for processing event attendees lists. In addition, refer to this article for in-depth explanations of specific calendars sync exceptions. Finally, there are custom sync adjustment options which alter the reciprocal mirroring principle according to customers’ preferences.
Unlike continuous mirror-syncing of MS Exchange/Office 365 or Gmail calendar items/tasks/contacts, sharing of emails is always a one-way Mail server → Salesforce process by definition, and it is performed only once for each shared email.
Besides this core data mirroring process, synchronization sessions involve several related jobs: checking for emails / events / tasks / contacts assigned Salesforce category or put into Salesforce folder, creation of Salesforce objects based on new emails or calendar items and user input, finding and linking of related records in Salesforce, deletion of the matching object if the configuration requires that (for example, removal from Salesforce of a meeting that got cancelled in Exchange/Office 365).
Note that in the latest SmartCloud Connect updates, resetting/reapplying Customization settings does not affect calendar items synchronization in any way.
Some actions can only be performed by synchronization: sharing of calendar items in Salesforce, saving of email messages in Compose mode, sharing of emails, contacts, or tasks by assigning them the Salesforce category or moving emails to the Salesforce emails folder. Additionally, due to the sync interval it may take up to 30 minutes for a corresponding record to appear in Salesforce after your performed either of these saving actions. However, please note that several other actions involving creation or updating of Salesforce records do not depend on synchronization, as they are performed by SmartCloud Connect immediately in Salesforce, e.g. saving email messages using the Save button in Read mode or initial sharing (creation) of calendar items in Salesforce. See this comparison table for more details.
Besides regular synchronization settings SmartCloud Connect offers special adjustments to meet your company’s specific preferences - syncing calendar items as other object types besides events and one-way synchronization options.
Auto-linking of email/event/task items created by Sync¶
Another important aspect of synchronization is auto-linking of Task/Email message/Event objects created in Salesforce by SmartCloud Connect sync. The Salesforce objects mirroring your email messages and calendar items get automatically associated through “lookup” relationships (the “Name” (WhoID) and “Related To” (WhatID) fields) with a relevant Contact/Lead, Account, and (optionally) Opportunity. This linking pattern is used both on auto-sharing and user-initiated sharing through custom category/dedicated MS Outlook folder.
Automatic creation of Contacts or Leads by SmartCloud Connect (Autoresolving)¶
On user-initiated syncing or auto-syncing of calendar items as well as emails auto-saving, SmartCloud Connect can automatically create required Leads or Contacts for meeting attendees and email recipients whose addresses were not registered in Salesforce previously (unresolved meeting attendees/email recipients). Created Leads’/Contacts’ fields will be populated with data retrieved from the meeting invitation’s/email’s signature, if one is available.
The Calendar Event or Task/EmailMessage object created in Salesforce to match the saved item will be linked to this Lead or Contact. Note that SCC will be lacking certain details to populate some of auto-created Leads’ or Contacts’ key fields, so the users should populate these fields later via the Sidebar to make them more detailed.
To request enabling of the Auto-resolving feature for your org, send a corresponding request to Invisible Support team, specifying if you would prefer Leads or Contacts to be auto-created for unresolved meeting attendees’ addresses. Optionally, SmartCloud Connect can also create Person Accounts instead of Leads/Contacts.
Note that email addresses and domains blacklisted from syncing by an individual SCC user (personal contacts, for example) or by the Org Admin will not be processed on Leads/Contacts auto-resolving by SCC for this user.
Finally, the latest SCC updates include optional advanced smart Lead/Contact auto-resolving mechanisms. See the descriptions of the settings SalesforceSmartCreateUnresolvedObjects and SalesforceEmailCreateAllUnresolvedRecipients in this article to learn more about these mechanisms.
In addition, SCC can optionally auto-create new Accounts to link the auto-created Contacts to in case there is no relevant Account retrieved by SCC Initial Search. The auto-created Account’s Name field will be based on the corporate email domain from the attendee’s email address. Later the Account’s specific details can be populated by the user via the Sidebar.
Instant Sync of Calendar Items¶
Insta-sync only works for MS Exchange/Office 365 meetings, and not for appointments or all-day events.
In the latest SmartCloud Connect updates Instant synchronization (insta-sync) of Exchange/Office 365 meetings was implemented, enabling SCC end users to synchronize their meetings with Salesforce calendar more dynamically, without a wait of up to 30 minutes till the next sync session.
Insta-sync is triggered only when a meeiting is created, updated, or deleted in MS Outlook/Office 365, and it does not trigger on any event updates in Salesforce calendar. When activated by a meeting’s change in MS Exchange, Insta-sync auto-triggers Force synchronization, this way initiating a sync session ahead of the 30 minute interval; several sequential insta-syncs can be performed only with 1-3 minute intervals, not immediately.
Insta-sync is enabled by default in most SmartCloud Connect configurations. Its behavior can be adjusted in SCC Global Settings (which are usually managed by Invisible CSM team); specifically, it is possible to set whether insta-sync should trigger on calendar items creation, calendar items updating, calendar items deletion.
Insta-sync is not available for SmartCloud Connect Chrome Extension for Gmail.