I cannot find any information as to how the owner record or the owner's role affects records visibility when a record is owned by Customer Community user. I am trying to understand why do we have to have a role selected for account owner that has contacts enabled as Customer Community Users.

I understand that Partner Community Users and Community Plus Users will create a role hierarchy branch and hence require you to have role.

This is a theoretical question that will help me better design communities in the future. There is no particular problem I am trying to solve.

Thanks in advance!

1 Answer 1


Without a role, the owner of the account may not be able to see the records that the customers create and own, because they won't be in the logical role hierarchy created by those users. In other words, you would have account managers that have no way to manage their accounts' data.

  • That is what I expected so I have set up the following test: As an experiment I have the following setup in dev org: Account Owner X with Role COO has Contact Y (owned by admin) that is enabled as community user. Y creates case and Account Owner X cannot see it. OWD for cases is Private for both internal and external users. In this scenario account manager indeed cannot manage their account's data. That is why I still cannot understand the importance of having the role.
    – Artur
    Aug 31, 2017 at 13:58
  • 1
    @Artur It's still important for sharing purposes. You can still configure it in a way that the account owner can't see the records, but without a role, there's no possible way to allow them to see the records.
    – sfdcfox
    Aug 31, 2017 at 14:16
  • does it mean that the role is needed only for salesforce internal sharing calculation? If yes, are the following statements correct? 1) It does not matter what role the account owner has as long as it is not none. 2) The account owner does not receive access to customer owned data based on role hierarchy. Bonus statement: 3) (Unlike Customer Community User) Customer Community Plus and Partner Users owned records will be affected by the account owners role hierarchy, i.e. standard role hierarchy rules apply to records of these users.
    – Artur
    Aug 31, 2017 at 14:51

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