How to Overcome Challenges in Business in 2020

By: | October 14, 2020 | Tags: , , , ,
Salesforce knowledge

Use this post about Salesforce knowledge as inspiration.

Salesforce specializes in cloud-based Customer Relationship Management.

This article traces the evolution of Salesforce knowledge. Salesforce started as a player in the SaaS industry and ended up a giant in the enterprise software industry.

This post traces Salesforce’s success. As Salesforce knowledge increased, so did the company’s versatility.

As time passes, your own knowledge and skills will increase. Like Salesforce, your success will increase too.

Overcoming the Challenges Faced During Continuous Salesforce Integration 

Over the last two decades, as Salesforce knowledge increased, Salesforce has become a market leader in sales, marketing, service, integration, and custom application development, and the fastest-growing enterprise software platform.

Salesforce differs from traditional platforms since it does away with the need for managing infrastructure for data, computing, network, or security.

Moreover, it does not require investing in generic system administration that does not contribute any value for the organization.

The learning culture and the supportive and accessible community enable rapid skill development and onboarding, which adds to the platform’s attraction. 

Salesforce development requires managing and changing metadata configurations and releasing them. The development process is different from typical software development because it entails fewer code writing.

Due to the diversity, Salesforce development benefits a lot from a quick resolution of issues and rapid feedback cycle. DevOps for Salesforce development help prompt continuous feedback loop from the customer, thereby improving business agility, the quality of the application, and IT responsiveness.  

The Salesforce platform provides challenges to the DevOps staff as well as application developers. This article focuses on the main struggles faced by the DevOps teams in dealing with Salesforce DevOps integration.

The problem

From an architectural perspective, Salesforce differs from any typical application, and the biggest difference from a .NET or J2EE application is storing the program code. 

Most of the program logic of Salesforce is stored in XML files, which are used with the Salesforce metadata API for deploying program code into a Salesforce instance commonly known as Org. 

Most of the source control systems have a common problem because they are not the best in discovering how to merge the differences with XML files. This is particularly evident when the ordering information within the file changes between source Orgs. 

What are the challenges?

During deployment of Salesforce, there are a few challenges that the DevOps team must consider.

Firstly, they must understand the methodology of merging and deploying code from one Salesforce Org to another. Secondly, they must realize that the Metadata API does not support rolling back after competing with the API call successfully. Thirdly, by using Metadata API, it is impossible to deploy all elements because either those items are not added yet to the Metadata API by Salesforce, or these are configuration changes unique to each Org.

The options

For deploying updates from one Salesforce Org to another, there are two options – Change Sets and the Force Migration Tool. 

Change Sets – Changesets are nothing but deployment function driven by UI, which works well in Salesforce. The creator has the simple task of selecting each of the items that have changed, packs them into a Changeset, and ascertains the target Salesforce Orgs.

Changesets are perhaps the most-used process for deploying Salesforce updates but come with the following concerns.  

  • The changes must be present in the Salesforce Orgs where the creator creates the Changeset.
  • It is not possible to update the Changesets after its creation and deployment. If required, you must create a new copy.
  • The creator must be aware of all items that changed during the creation of the Changesets. 
  • Due to the limited size of Changesets, it cannot include all design elements in most Salesforce applications. 
  • If a Salesforce implementation contains several updates and design elements, the continued use of the More-based pagination system can become quite tiresome and boring.
  • There is a lack of a change in the history/ source control aspect of the delivery method.

Force migration tool–The Forced Migration Tool is an Ant-based mechanism to bring about changes originating from a set of source files. The process makes use of Apache Ant and a custom Salesforce connector to communicate with the Metadata API directly. Consequently, the following benefits are available from the Force Migration Tool.

  • There is no need for Change Sets to exist in a specific Salesforce Org and instead sourced from an external repository.
  • Using source control, it is possible to make changes to the source files to make it appear as if they were used in a .NET or Java application. 
  • Since the source control system can identify the updates, there is no need to know about every change.
  • Using the Force Migration tool, it is possible to push an entire Salesforce implementation to another Org.
  • Removing changes with the help of the Force Migration Tool is possible.

Although the Force Migration Tool helps to overcome challenges in integrating DevOps with Salesforce, it comes with its own set of challenges.

  • The use of Ant-based commands is often necessary to remove files that cannot undergo migration.
  • It is necessary to use regular expressions within the build.xml for removingSalesforce elements at run-time but do not appear to move between Orgs.
  • The process requires uninterrupted attention, especially during Salesforce core releases for addressing new challenges. The addition or removal of items is prone to errors with the deployment of Force Migration Tools.

The solution

The following steps help in resolving the challenges:

  • To make changes for Jira issues, developers use a Salesforce Org. and the QA team tests the changes.
  • On obtaining approval, the developer creates a new branch in Git/Stash and then uses Eclipse along with the Force IDE to extract the changes from their Sales Org into their branch. Next, Bamboo automatically triggers all the tests built into Salesforce. 
  • On clearing the Bamboo tests, the developer creates a pull request in Git/Stash that the other team reviews.
  • After approval and merging of the pull request, the Salesforce Org used for integration is used for another testing with the approved code, and the tests are fired in that Org. Other developers can see the code when they create a new branch.
  • To consider the merged code for a release candidate, a manual task is initiated in Bamboo, archiving the source codeby creating a copy, and a build number is assigned to the release candidate.  The update of Salesforce Org for integration is completed, and the tests are done.
  • You can push the release candidate to any other Salesforce Org like the full copy Org for thorough testing, developer Orgs, and Production.

Author: Randy Stark

Wrapping Up: Salesforce Knowledge

Host blogger’s comments:

I hope you could see how Salesforce Knowledge increased until Salesforce became a contender in the enterprise software space. As Salesforce knowledge increased, Salesforce’s versatility increased and the company became internationally marketable.

When author Randy Stark contributed his post for publication, I asked myself what Mostly Blogging’s readers could take away as a result of reading this.

According to Randy, Salesforce has overcome many obstacles. Today, Salesforce is a leader in software. Although Salesforce started in the SaaS (Software as a Service) industry, today Salesforce has far greater functionalities.

In 2020, Salesforce is a giant in the world of enterprise software, an area of technology that specializes in software for organizations.

By reading the history of how the Salesforce community overcame its struggles, we can rest assured that we too can overcome our struggles in our own businesses or personal lives.

Readers, please share so entrepreneurs discover the struggles this company went through before Salesforce knowledge increased until the company became internationally known as a leader in enterprise software.

Related Reading

Salesforce is a tool used in business. If you’d like to learn about tools used in social media, see this Mostly Blogging article about unfollow tools.

This post traced Salesforce’s rise to success when Salesforce’s knowledge increased. If you’d like to read about how the most famous entrepreneurs in the world rose to success, check out this Mostly Blogging article about how to write a blog about life experiences.

  1. Mohamed

    Janice, you’ve written a highly informative article on Salesforce and integration for various companies. You’ve put out the challenges and solutions and what should be expected in a neat and precise manner. I don’t know how to say, but not a lot of bloggers have put out articles in a very constructed way for a long time, and I appreciate the time you’ve taken to explain Salesforce Integration. It helps out a lot of people. Also, the writing style you use is easy to understand without the need to run towards a dictionary. Once again, thank you.

    • Janice Wald

      Glad you enjoyed. I feared it was complicated and technical. I appreciate your assurances that a dictionary wasn’t necessary. =).

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