Duplicate records in Vault can happen due to migrations, integrations, or day-to-day activities. Correcting this duplication requires deleting the duplicate record, which may be challenging because of the many ways an object record can be referenced. For example, an object record may be referenced in document relationships, record relationships, and other Vault configuration. A duplicate object record may also have child records, and Vault usually does not allow reparenting object records. Vault provides a solution to this issue by allowing you to merge two records together.

When you merge two records, you select one record to be the Main record and one record to be the Duplicate record. The merging process updates all inbound references (including attachments) from other objects that point to the Duplicate record and moves them over to the Main record. Field values on the Main record are not changed, and when the process is complete, Vault deletes the Duplicate record.

How to Merge Records

You can only initiate a record merge through the Vault API or Vault Java SDK. Learn more about how to execute a record merge in the Developer Portal.

Before you can merge records, you need to enable merges for the desired object.

To enable merges for a custom object:

  1. Navigate to Admin > Configuration > Objects and select an object.
  2. From the Details tab, click Edit.
  3. Select the Enable Merges checkbox. You can only edit this setting on custom objects; standard and system-managed objects may already have this enabled.
  4. Click Save.

Once enabled, Vault provides the In Merge system picklist field on the object.

In Merge Picklist

The In Merge picklist allows users to understand when an object record is actively undergoing a merge, and if the record is the Main or Duplicate record. During a record merge, the In Merge picklist value is either Main or Duplicate. If the object record is not actively undergoing a merge, this value is null.

Only Vault can update the In Merge picklist field, and these updates are not audited. Instead, Vault adds an audit event for the start and completion of the merge for each object record.

For example, a single record merge will have four (4) audit events:

  • One audit event that the Main record started the merge
  • One audit event that the Duplicate record started the merge
  • One audit event that the Main record completed the merge
  • One audit event that the Duplicate record ended the merge.

Only users with the Full User license type can initiate record merges, even if their permission set grants other relevant permissions.

The user initiating the record merge must have a security profile that grants the following permissions:

Permission Access Details
Application: Object: Merge Records Required to start record merges.
Object: {Object Name}: View, Edit, Delete Required to read, edit, and delete the records on the object to merge. Learn more about object permissions.

Because record merges can only be initiated through the API or SDK, the initiating user must have at least one of the following additional permissions:

Permission Access Details
API: Access API Required to use the Vault REST API.
Vault Java SDK: Read, Create, Edit, Delete Required to use the Vault Java SDK. Learn more about other related Vault Java SDK permission in the Vault Java SDK.