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Exploring Bidirectional Sandbox Seeding for Efficiency-Focused Teams

Zoe Burris

August 30, 2021

When you want to maximize your team’s efficiency and improve your end-user experience, AppOps can help you transform your entire workflow. By using this low-code option for DevOps, your team will be handling change requests like clockwork. And it all starts with efficiently seeding your Salesforce sandboxes.

When developers are only able to work with partial data, the chance of bugs and errors slowing down progress is immense. Many teams lose steam in the development and QA process when they go the route of manually working with a sandbox test data set. Bidirectional sandbox seeding bestows control to anyone who can click through a data management workflow. 

What is Bidirectional Sandbox Seeding?

Sandbox seeding is when you deploy data from your production org to a sandbox, whether it’s a freshly created org or you’re refreshing it. With AppOps, your team has the ability to move data in both directions, which makes it bidirectional. This makes for much better auditability of changes in production and deployment results. When your governance strategy is supported by AppOps, here’s what the process should look like:

Bidirectional Sandbox Seeding makes it so that once you start with a fresh sandbox and deploy data to it, you can move in any direction through this flowchart. Whether you’re rolling back changes to start from the beginning or just need to change a tiny detail, you’re able to move through these phases in just a few clicks. 

Why Should I Seed Sandboxes?

The first rule of maintaining Salesforce is “don’t make changes in production.” But far too often that means everyone working in the same full or partial org, making it difficult to keep track of who’s doing what, increasing the odds of stepping on each other’s work, and near impossible to find a good window of time to refresh the sandbox. Best practice states that instead, each individual should start each project in a dedicated sandbox and then promote changes to a shared QA org before releasing the change in production. This allows individuals to work faster and gives companies more thorough testing, better auditability of changes, and more effective usage of their expensive sandboxes.

So what’s stopping more Salesforce teams from adopting a better release workflow? The lack of representative production data in lower level sandboxes makes it harder to imagine, configure, and test changes. This problem becomes more complicated as changes move up the release pipeline and you need to keep all of the sandboxes in sync with production.  

What Does Sandbox Seeding Look Like Without AppOps?

Without AppOps, you’re literally out there on your own having to use a barrage of tools to handle what AppOps does seamlessly. There’s the tedious process of using a data loader, which can be compounded based on the size of your project. Some companies have to employ a 3rd party developer to manage their sandbox, which can become quite costly. With AppOps Release, you’re able to populate—and even anonymize— representative test data into five orgs in just a matter of minutes. Prodly gives you more control of your data, your processes, and a greater probability of aligning your people with the needs of your stakeholders for every project. 

How Can I Use AppOps to Improve my Salesforce Governance Strategy?

Having a seamless, automated process for seeding sandboxes increases org health, fights errors, and immensely improves efficiency. AppOps can help you move your data up, down, backwards and forward between your production org and sandboxes. This eliminates the need to depend on a full copy to work from as you advance through changes. You’re also able to configure data simulations, which means you can make changes without consequences.  When you need to deploy complex data from a schema all at once, no more worries about complications. Prodly gives you the power to migrate data from up to five orgs simultaneously.

See for yourself how easy and quick it is to seed sandboxes with AppOps Release. Watch the Bidirectional Sandbox Seeding Webinar (25 min).