We use Person Accounts. I'm very familiar with how they work (after 3.5 years of dealing with them).

We are constantly at the brink of no custom field space left on our Account object.

I decided to tackle USING THE CONTACT for further storage after attempting to get a third object linked to Contact-Account (not possible) and seeing if SF will give us more Custom field space (they won't except to sell us Unlimited which by my recall gives us 100 more fields on Account).

So I setup a DATE field on Contact. I setup Workflows to UPDATE that field (using it's Account counterpart that ends in __pc). The update happens just fine - every time an Account or one of it's Opps is edited, that field updates with the latest Date/Time.

However... a SIMPLE workflow on Contact is NOT FIRING not matter WHAT I do. I'm down to something THIS SIMPLE:

  • WORKFLOW (on Contact):
  • When created, and every time it's edited
  • with a filter of 1==1
  • run Field Update on field X
  • The field update is literally the formula 123.

Field X will not get any value no matter what I do. It stays blank.

If I manually change Field X to 3242, and touch things, it stays 3242.

It SEEMS that when implementing Person Accounts, Salesforce has either disabled functionality for Field Updates on Contact, or something similar.

Anyone have a clue? OMG. (sigh) I was all excited I was gaining 400+ custom fields from the Contact record. :-( #PullHairOut

UPDATE 2017-03-13:   Anyone have any new info on this I am vaguely aware that SF has added some "new support" for Person Accounts in the past 2 years (I am no longer in an Org that uses them, but I wanted to followup on this Question).

1 Answer 1


When doing an update on a Person Account, only the Account workflow rules are triggered.

See the very last sentence of the help doc: https://help.salesforce.com/HTViewHelpDoc?id=account_person_behavior.htm&language=en_US

You could choose either to only put fields on Contact that don't require workflow, or handle the logic in triggers. Both not ideal but it will give you some more breathing space..

  • I don't see that the comment you note on that page (though this IS a new page to me) means you "cannot" do workflows on the Contact. I am going to have to go through the pain of contacting SF on this. Ugh. What I'm SEEING DOES MATCH what you assume that comment to mean. I just INSIST it's wrong (rofl) ;-] I'm TOUCHING the Contact. They CHARGE US for storage on both Contact AND Account under Person Account methodology. :-P
    – AMM
    Mar 25, 2014 at 18:59
  • Okay, Salesforce PTB... Case# 10362497 awaits your expert guidance. ;)
    – AMM
    Mar 25, 2014 at 19:44
  • More directly to @guy ... I appreciate the insight from your perspective. I'm HOPING that your understanding of "the last sentence" on that Help page is incorrect though. (fingers crossed) Despite evidence to the contrary.
    – AMM
    Mar 25, 2014 at 19:46
  • keeping my fingers crossed for you.. ;-) Mar 25, 2014 at 20:01
  • Two months of working on other projects, I return to this... and SF has mysteriously made the case DISAPPEAR from my Support Portal. Nice.
    – AMM
    Jun 24, 2014 at 14:30

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