What does Salesforce DevOps mean? Experts in the field suggest it means multiple things to different people. The truth is ever since the launch of Salesforce 20 years ago. The corporation has evolved to such a large extent that there are now several Salesforce developer teams worldwide. They have stated that in the process of working with these teams, there are some fascinating facts that they have learned. This post will share them and give you an insight into what the DevOps journey means to some Salesforce developers and what should be their next logical steps in the path.  

developer teams

An insight into Salesforce teams and their assessment by experts 

Experts in the field of Salesforce state teams working with the platform roughly fall into five divisions. Of course, there is a variation between each division and sometimes some subtle common characteristics as well. Going up from one tier to the understanding of the next is very important. The need as well as the implementation of the same concepts in a logical sequence that is considered fair by seasoned users.

They have created the DevOps assessment model to be more for teaching over a means for placing labels on the teams. The objective of the assessment is to aid developer teams to comprehend the journey for DevOps accurately and know how to take the following steps. Examine it properly to find out and implement its best features for your business. Consult a specialist if you are not sure how to go about it. 

Given below are the assessments of four major categories that experts in Salesforce evaluate teams on- 

  1. Strategies for Sandbox 
  2. Source control
  3. Deployment
  4. Testing and Quality
  5. Management of Releases 

There are, of course, other taxonomies; however, the above are the ones that carry the most significance.

1. Strategies for Sandbox 

Note that the sandbox’s strategies should be robust for the implementation of any DevOps implementation under Salesforce since it is used for development. It gives developers the utility of Sandboxes so that they can save time and effort when it comes to repetitive tasks associated with the development of software applications like authentication, security, database management, scaling, schema migration, code execution, hosting on the Cloud and more. You will be surprised to see several teams still make changes to the production org or again are using one sandbox before production. If you go a level higher, you will find developer teams deploying multiple stages like UAT, training before the change, integration, and staging before the production environment is reached. At the far end of the assessment scale, there are developer teams that use complicated and sophisticated strategies for Sandbox with schedules for a refresh, the use of scratch logs for feature branches, and other complicated flows.

2. Source Control 

Though there have been great developments in Salesforce in the last 5 years, there are many SF DevOpsteams that do not have real vision control set up for their Salesforce environments. In case they do set up real version control, it might be limited to have an ANT script run each night for backing up their metadata. Some might even have Apex in any Git repository; however, they are not helpful to admins when it comes to configuring metadata like a custom object, workflows, or process builders into the source control. 

It is vital to have source control in place as it gives the developer the scope to rollback any adverse change, restore from the backup, prevent code clobbering, and audit any change to the system. With the arrival of the Salesforce DX, source driven software development has become an essential top for developers working with Salesforce. It helps in layering the foundation for any DevOps strategy.

3. Deployment 

In the past, Salesforce has two methods for deploying changes between two production environments- the Force.com migration toolkit and changesets. Developers never loved both. Salesforce had twice been referred to as the software development platform that was one of the most dreaded ones in the past. So, it answered its critics back with the Salesforce DX that offered developer teams with the tools they wanted to use to build DevOps processes. This tool is very advanced and was deployed by several greenfield projects. Other elite Salesforce developers experiment with servers associated with Continuous Integration like Bitbucket Pipelines, Travis, and Jenkins as they have highly customizable tools.

4. Testing and Quality 

Building quality gates and functional tests that are automated as an integral part of the Salesforce deployment pipeline can reveal a lot of where you stand in the Salesforce DevOps journey. Every developer team does not make the above a component of their release, and others are embracing technology and practices that are making the above task simpler to accomplish.

5. Management of releases 

Are you deploying spreadsheets to track all the changes you make to Salesforce or even Word Docs for the task? The reality is many developer teams are. However, developer teams have started to invest in Application Lifecycle Management tools for keeping track of the changes they make to Salesforce. If you have the right tool in place, it permits you to track who is doing what and when the change is going to be done. 

The moment you take the Salesforce assessment tests by experts, you will get an insight into where you stand in the DevOps journey, but you will also get the remedies when it comes to improvements. To begin to improve your DevOps journey, you should be aware and educated on the latest best practices for Salesforce Development, optimally use changesets and sandboxes to boost changes overworking straight into the production, and set up backups for metadata and source control. 

In this way, you can improve your skills as a Salesforce developer and gain a strategic edge in the market when it comes to the development of robust software apps on the platform. Note, the process is a gradual one, so have patience until you succeed in your endeavor.

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