Tag Archives: salesforce admin

An abstract image showing a concept of Salesforce DevOps

Salesforce DevOps: What Took So Long?

Salesforce DevOps has been a long time coming. However, DevOps has long been a popular methodology for IT teams. So what has caused the slow adoption of DevOps by the Salesforce community?

First, Salesforce isn’t a code-first environment. Second, the production org has always been the source of truth. And third, creating reproducible environments has been extremely challenging. 

In this blog, we take a closer look at these factors. Then we explain how Prodly directly addresses each one to facilitate Salesforce DevOps. 

An abstract image showing a concept of Salesforce DevOps

3 Reasons Salesforce Was Slow to Adopt DevOps

We can attribute the Salesforce ecosystem’s slow adoption of DevOps to the following key principles.

1. Salesforce Is Not a Code-First Environment

Salesforce is first and foremost a low-code platform. It’s as much declaratively configured as it’s programmatically configured. That’s why it’s such a great tool for low-code developers such as Salesforce admins and citizen developers.

Often, Salesforce admins, business analysts, and project managers have great ideas. Unfortunately, they’re still excluded from conversations due to their inability to work with code-heavy DevOps tools.

To achieve successful adoption of DevOps for any team, low-code and no-code citizen developers must be first-class citizens from the very beginning. This is why Prodly DevOps is designed with the lowest technical user in mind. 

2. The Production Org Has Historically Been the Source of Truth

Within Salesforce, we think of production as the source of truth. The problem is that production is always evolving—and there’s no real history of changes. 

In DevOps, the code is the source of truth. The code is versioned, and every change is stored in a repository so it’s easy to roll back changes if there’s an error. Think of the “track changes” feature in a document.

For Salesforce DevOps to be successful, we need to version not just the code, but also the declarative configurations. 

This is why Prodly helps you version your Salesforce data with GitHub, Azure, and Bitbucket integrations.

3. Creating Reproducible Environments Has Been Challenging 

One important DevOps principle is to be able to easily create reproducible environments. 

Why? Because by giving each developer their own org, they have a safe place to play around and test new ideas without stepping on each other’s toes. So it’s imperative to be able to quickly spin up and discard new orgs.

Salesforce has sandboxes. However, they’re not truly reproductions of production because they don’t contain all your data. 

Even Full Copies get out of sync with production quickly—plus, they can only be refreshed every 30 days. 

Salesforce data is highly relational, and those data relationships are hard to maintain org to org. That’s why most companies fall into one of two buckets:

  • Everyone shares the Full or Partial Copy sandbox. All the work happens here, and people overwrite each other’s work by mistake. This frequently results in access restriction to certain data. 
  • They work in Developer Pro sandboxes without the right test data, meaning they can’t efficiently build new stuff or test it very well.

To be successful with Salesforce DevOps, you need to be able to create true copies of production. What’s more: You need to be able to do this really quickly.

That’s why Prodly Sandbox Management allows you to select, filter, and seed data into any org in minutes. Check out Maximize Your Salesforce Orgs With Sandbox Management to learn more.

Schedule a demo to discover how to enable Salesforce DevOps with Prodly.

Salesforce admin using version control.

Version Control: What Salesforce Admins Need to Know

Version control is a critical aspect of software development, and it’s becoming increasingly important in Salesforce change management. In this blog, we discuss what version control is and how it can benefit Salesforce admins.

What Is Version Control?

Version control, sometimes called source control, involves tracking and managing changes to software code to ensure developers are always working on the latest version. 

If you only have one software developer writing code, it’s easy for them to keep track of the changes they’re making and how they impact the existing code. However, when multiple developers are working on different parts of the code, it requires much more effort and communication to keep the changes straight. 

A version control system or VCS is a tool that makes tracking and managing changes to the code easier for teams. 

Teams maintaining Salesforce encounter the same challenges as software developers. There are lots of people working on different parts of the Salesforce instance. Some are pro-code developers working in Apex, while others are admins and citizen developers. 

With all these different people working in the same environment, sometimes work is lost or overwritten, and it can be difficult to fix mistakes. 

Clearly, for admins following an agile release management methodology, version control is essential. 

Salesforce admin using version control.

How Can Admins Benefit from Version Control?

The most important advantage to using a VCS is that it becomes the source of truth—instead of the production org. 

This eliminates questions about which version is correct and provides several additional benefits for admins. 

Identify Conflicts as They Occur

When you’re working with multiple versions of your project, a VCS lets you make changes without worrying you’ll overwrite work another member of your team is doing. By enabling source control, you remove the anxiety of creating conflict when you implement changes. 

Track the Revision History of Changes Over Time

Sometimes, when you’re making changes, you need to refer back to a specific change you scrapped previously. A version control system stores a history of all changes made to the code, so you can easily look them up.

With Prodly, you can effectively “move backward in time.” Then you can pluck out the configurations you need and reconfigure your changes as simply as pointing and clicking. 

Work in a Truly Agile Environment

Agile release methodology is based on close collaboration and continuous improvement that you achieve by means of tight feedback cycles. For this methodology to be effective, both developers and admins need to work from the same source code and follow the same process for introducing change. 

To achieve this collaborative efficiency, you must reconfigure your workflow. It should be easy for pro-code developers to follow—plus, it should be easily consumable for admins and other no-code team members. 

Prodly Makes Version Control Simple

Prodly DevOps is designed to work in conjunction with your Salesforce deployment system, so you don’t have to load up on multiple tools to get the benefits of version control. If you’re an admin, you can simply point and click to complete versioning tasks—as well as version both your data and code. 

Request a personalized demo to learn more about implementing Prodly for your team!

The Value of Bidirectional Sandbox Seeding

In this blog, we explore what bidirectional sandbox seeding is and why you need it. We also look at the value of sandbox seeding with Prodly Sandbox Management, as well as why you should be seeding sandboxes in the first place.

What Is Bidirectional Sandbox Seeding?

Bidirectional sandbox seeding involves deploying data from your production org to a sandbox—and from your sandbox to another environment. You can do this with a freshly created org or during an environment refresh.

A photo of a desert with a traffic sign with arrows pointing in opposite directions representing bidirectional sandbox seeding

Why Do You Need Bidirectional Sandbox Seeding?

Bidirectional sandbox seeding allows you to create a fresh sandbox, deploy data to it, and then move data in any direction—up, down, and laterally. You can roll back changes to start all the way at the beginning, or you can change just one tiny detail. 

This makes for a much better auditability of changes in production and deployment results, resulting in better governance.

When you’re only able to work with partial data, the chance of bugs and errors slowing down your 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. 

In contrast, bidirectional sandbox seeding gives control to anyone who can click through a data management workflow. 

The Value of Bidirectional Sandbox Seeding With Prodly

With the sandbox seeding feature in Prodly Sandbox Management, you have the ability to move data in both directions—with just a few clicks. This allows you to maximize your team’s efficiency, transform your entire workflow, and improve your end-user experience. 

By using this low-code option for DevOps, you’ll soon be handling change requests like clockwork. 

Improve Your Governance Strategy With Prodly

The seamless, automated process for seeding sandboxes Prodly provides enhances your governance strategy. 

It increases org health, fights errors, and immensely improves efficiency. Here’s how:

Prodly Sandbox Management can help you move your data up, down, backwards and forward between your production org and sandboxes. 

It gives you the power to migrate data from up to five orgs simultaneously. This eliminates the need to depend on a Full Copy Sandbox to work from as you advance through changes. 

You can also configure data simulations, meaning that you can make changes without consequences. When you need to deploy complex data from a schema all at once, you don’t have to worry about complications anymore. 

Sandbox Seeding Without Prodly

Without the sandbox seeding feature in Prodly Sandbox Management, you’re literally left to your own devices having to use a barrage of tools to handle what Prodly does seamlessly. 

There’s the tedious process of using a data loader. The difficulty, duration, and mind-numbingness of the project can be compounded based on the size of your project. 

Some companies employ a third-party developer to manage their sandbox, which can become quite costly. 

In contrast, with Prodly, you can populate—and even anonymize— representative test data into as many as five orgs in just a matter of minutes. Prodly gives you more control of your data and processes, as well as a greater probability of aligning your team with the needs of your stakeholders for every project. 

Why Should I Seed Sandboxes?

There are several very good reasons to seed sandboxes. 

Without sandbox seeding, there’s a lack of representative production data in lower-level sandboxes that 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.  

However, sandbox seeding lets you provide everyone with their own development environment before they promote their changes to a shared QA org and ultimately production. This circumvents the problem of who’s doing what in a shared sandbox—plus, it reduces the odds of overwriting each other’s work.

It lets your team work faster and test more thoroughly. It also gives you more effective use of your expensive sandboxes.

In addition, when everyone has their own development environment with representative data, it’s much easier to find a good window of time to refresh your Full Copy or Partial Copy sandbox. And that in turn reduces the number of errors you encounter during the development process.

See Bidirectional Sandbox Seeding in Action!

Discover how easy and quick it is to seed sandboxes with Prodly Sandbox Management—watch the 25-minute webinar Ask a CSM: Bidirectional Sandbox Seeding.

DevOps: What Salesforce Admins Need to Know

As a Salesforce administrator, you’re one of the biggest change agents in any organization. But how do you control  your workflow and effectively affect change management? In recent years, Salesforce DevOps has been gaining traction as a way to better manage releases and drive faster innovation.  

While you may think DevOps is more of a category of interest for developers, think again, as there is much more to explore. When implemented correctly, DevOps empowers Salesforce administrators to affect organizational efficiency in a whole new way and enables anyone who has an idea to participate in implementing it. 

Can It Support Me as a Salesforce Administrator?

Allow your perspective to be transformed to fully understanding the benefits of DevOps. Also understand that implementing DevOps starts with a Salesforce Governance strategy surrounding how everyone on your team participates in the flow of change. By defining a strategy for making changes and implementing Salesforce DevOps tools to make it easier to follow the change process you can dramatically increase who gets to participate in the ideation process of change management. 

For many teams, the process of implementation is the daunting part of the process of adoption that causes a bit of anxiety. But rest assured that the pain of not having a tool supporting your change management processes is much greater and over time only leads to a more restrictive, risk averse attitude towards Salesforce release management where only a few people are trusted to participate in the process. DevOps aims to break down these silos and encourage more people to participate in the management of Salesforce. 

Can DevOps Help You Better Support Your Team?

Prodly was designed with the understanding that Salesforce developers and administrators alike want to accelerate the pace of innovation without sacrificing trust. There’s also the opportunity for Salesforce teams to:

  • Foster greater collaboration
  • Create more opportunities for inclusion
  • Develop goals that focus on empowerment
  • Maximize overall growth
  • Clear backlogged projects faster
  • Change your risk stance from risk adverse to willing to experiment

DevOps is centered around helping you build and adopt a culture, mentality and processes that encourage innovation. Being in the driver’s seat means you are able to introduce ideas that help you to sustain your workflows more effectively. 

You’re also able to test those solutions without fear of your team taking a hit to its time and resources. Learning about DevOps as a viable solution for improving your team’s bottom line is a great step.

Can It Help Salesforce Administrators Better Manage Risks?

DevOps has the power to transform your company’s perspective on innovation, risk aversion and inclusiveness. When every member of your team is engaged to ideate within a trusted process with the appropriate safeguards, you can achieve a more robust flow of solutions and opportunities for consistent growth and collaboration. Likewise, when everyone is engaged in spotting and managing risks, the chances of bottlenecks or silos in these situations are significantly reduced and the changes that are promoted to production are more thoroughly tested. 

DevOps addresses this by making it a priority from the strategy development phase. Which is where it should be handled, not when your team is drowning in a sea of requests. 

To learn more about how DevOps can support you as an admin, contact us.