Salesforce Admins Podcast

This week on the Salesforce Admins Podcast, we’re talking with Neha Ahlawat, Director Product Management at Salesforce and the Product Manager for Custom Metadata. We dive into all things Custom Metadata: what it is and why you should care about it.

Join us as we talk about how Custom Metadata types can make your app more sophisticated, and why you shouldn’t fear the CLI.

You should subscribe for the full episode, but here are a few takeaways from our conversation with Neha Ahlawat.

Why Custom Metadata types are better than Custom Settings.

“Custom Metadata types are custom versions of metadata that you, the customer or developer, can create and use,” Neha says. It works very similarly to a Custom Object, but it works like metadata, letting you unlock some powerful Salesforce features. With low code or no code, you can simplify common processes like replacing hardcoded data on validation rules and making them much easier to maintain.

In the past, you may have used Custom Settings to help you out, but Custom Metadata types have a few advantages that you should take advantage of. They’re reusable, because the rules of a Custom Metadata type are application metadata, allowing you to redeploy and package them for other purposes. There’s also better protection mechanics to cover not just the type, but the individual records. You can create relationships between Custom Metadata types, and even reference them in validation rules. “Basically, you can make an application a bit more sophisticated and customizable by using Custom Metadata,” Neha says, in ways you can’t do with Custom Settings.

Don’t fear the CLI.

Neha and her team just released a CLI plugin for Custom Metadata types. “Do not fear the CLI, admins, it’s very simple to use,” Neha says, “it’s very simple to use those single-line commands that can allow you to do much more powerful stuff with Custom Metadata directly from the command line.”

You can bulk insert records for a Custom Metadata type, allowing you to add up to 10,000 records with one command execution. If you’ve been using the third-party Data Loader tool and run into some roadblocks, you might consider switching to the CLI plugin so you can get help directly from Salesforce.

New features for Winter ‘21 and beyond.

With the Winter ‘21 Release, there are a few new things coming to Custom Metadata. The CLI plugin is out, but so is the ability to create relationships with the geolocation compound field. Looking forward, they’re trying to focus on bridging the gaps that exist between Custom Settings and Custom Metadata types to make it easier to switch over. 



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Full Show Transcript