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I’ve deleted something I need to get back – Now what?


"Oh no! I've gone and deleted something I needed!"  What's next?

This might be a familiar phrase and whilst annoying, it happens to the best of us. Whether it's because you genuinely believed you didn't need it (only to realise you do after) or because it's been a busy day, it's 4PM and you're a little lacking in attention, unfortunately, you've already pressed the "Delete" button.

Fear not! In our system, things are soft deleted which means that the deletion of the item simply hides the item from the user's view. As we are a system based in providing compliance and electronic audit trails, it for this reason we always hold a back up in storage (subject to our Data Privacy Policy of course - download here). What this means is that if you have unfortunately gone and deleted something in enableHR, we at the Product Support team can get it back for you (at a cost).

To see all the articles on how you can delete each of the items in enableHR (and what preventative measures you can take in the future to try and self-service the retrieval of the item), please see the following articles:

Please note: reiterating the above, it is very important that you read the relevant article above as each article will provide you with instructions on how to try and retrieve the deleted item yourself (if a method is available) or, if not available, how to make it easier for us to retrieve the item for you.

As the retrieval of deleted items counts as a costed developer task, anything you can do that can help make it easier for us to help you will also help you reduce the overall cost of the request.

"Phew! enableHR is to the rescue!"  Here's what we need from you!

As per the above articles, we can retrieve anything that's been soft deleted which clients can't do themselves but in order to do that, we will need as much of the following information as possible to form a quote around the cost:

  1. What was deleted? (a record? document? branch? or checklist?) - [this is mandatory, we can't go looking for something when we don't know what we're looking for]

  2. Who deleted the item? (which user? or if you don't know, who do you think did it?)

  3. When was the item deleted? (to the closest approximate date and time)

  4. How many items were deleted?

  5. Do you know the Unique ID (generated by our system) of the item needing to be retrieved? (if you know how to source it)

  6. If not, do you know the Name Title of the item needing to be retrieved? (so we have a reference of what to look for in the database)

  7. Lastly, Why do you want this item retrieved? If it was important, why try to delete it in the first place? What were you trying to achieve (so as to understand what outcome you were trying to achieve and see if there was some suggestions we could make for future reference)? Or, was it simply a mistake?

"So, what's the cost?

Based on how much of the above information we get back, we will form a quote on the cost of getting the item(s) back by more or less following the below formula:

  • ([C] (Complexity) x [N] (Number of Items)) x $345.00 ex GST = Task Cost ($)

We will explain how it works below:

Obviously, we can't even start quoting for the task if we don't have the information for (1) above because:

(a) we can't give you a quote on looking for something when we don't know what we're looking for;


(b) the method for looking for each of the items above in the database differs slightly.

But suppose we have an idea of what we're looking for, the secondary factor of Complexity is formed by how much of the information for numbers (2), (3) and (5) and/or (6) we get.


"Can I have some examples?

As an example of a low complexity request, Client A tells us that

  • They need one single document (accidentally deleted from someone's record) retrieved.
  • The client gives us the title of the document (as they do not have the unique ID for the document)
  • The client also gives us the unique ID for the Employee record where the document was stored
  • The client was also able to tell us that he/she deleted the document with their own login sometime today around lunch time AEST.

In the above example, the client has given us the most pertinent information to work off of as we know what we're looking for, what other things may be associated, what date and what time (roughly) we should be looking at and so, a developer can go into the database and either:

(a) show all documents associated with the Employee record which should also list the document we're looking for as 'Deleted' and change the status back to 'Current'


(b) look at the system logs and identify the actions for the client's user login between 12PM - 1PM AEST and look for a 'View' action with an associated 'Delete' action which should lead us to the document we're looking. From there, we perform the same change (change the status from 'Deleted' back to 'Current'

Adversely, as an example of a high complexity request, Client B tells us that

  • A number of documents were deleted but they don't know the exact number
  • They don't know who did it but it wasn't them (it was some other user)
  • They have no idea when the documents were deleted (they just so happen to notice today when looking for one of the documents)
  • They don't know the exact names or any of the IDs for the documents

In this case, as there are a lot of variables and "don't knows", it'll be very difficult and take a lot of time for a developer to retrieve the documents as we will need to set an arbitrary time-frame and look through the logs to find any delete actions associated with the account or users from the account.

To add to that, there will be additional time added in for back-and-forth between the client and our Product Support team to try and find more information to help us look better and validate any of our findings (did we find the right ones? Or should we keep looking?)

Please note: Researching system logs is a complex task. There are multiple systems producing and saving logged activity, and these can produce hundreds of lines per second. This means that researching logs can be a large task, particularly when the scope of activities covers several days."

"Okay, so how is payment processed?

We will provide you with a quote for the work in the form of a Scope of Works which will need to reviewed, approved (signed) and returned to us.  Payment is processed via the credit card against your account. 

We (the Product Support) team will add it to our task list and action the task as soon as possible (provided there aren't more pressing matters like system breaking bugs we need to fix (thankfully these are rare!)).  We will do our best to provide an ETA as to when it will be completed however this all depends on the above variables.

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