DevOps approaches have evolved over the past 10 years to become a norm for high-quality continuous software delivery in short development cycles. To speed up delivery cycles, secure systems, and improve overall software quality, in 2021, 83% of the IT Decision makers surveyed said that they were applying DevOps principles in their teams. Using Salesforce DevOps methods can help Development and Operations teams in companies that depend on their CRM software become more efficient and well-organized.
DevOps is a methodology that helps development and operations teams collaborate and work together to build, test, and release software faster and more reliably. It combines the responsibilities of both teams and brings them together, breaking down silos and allowing for more effective communication and collaboration. This results in faster, more secure, and less error-prone releases, achieved through the use of agile development and automation to replace fragile manual processes.
For Salesforce, DevOps means bringing together developers and admins responsible for building applications with admins, team leads, or release managers responsible for releasing, monitoring, and maintaining those applications. When the responsibility of releasing software is shared across the whole development team, it allows for better communication, collaboration, and more effective problem-solving. DevOps is a new approach to development and releases that emphasizes collaboration, automation, and incremental improvement to shorten release cycles and improve the quality of software products.
Over the past few years, Salesforce DevOps has established itself in forums, gatherings, events, and meetings. It totally changes the game for DevOps teams. However, have you ever questioned why adopting Salesforce DevOps is simple but effectively running it isn't? The short answer is that DevOps tools are simple to use. However, "simple" can also refer to completing tasks more quickly and coming up with complex solutions in a brief period of time without using a sound strategy.
You don't always have to make numerous changes at once when implementing DevOps for Salesforce. A more agile development process can be achieved with just one step. The four DevOps pillars of version control, continuous integration, automated testing, and backup are generally included in a strong DevOps strategy.
Pillar 1: Version Control
Any contemporary DevOps process is built around a Git-based version control system (VCS), also known as "source control." Multiple contributors can work on the same features concurrently thanks to source control, which enables your team to track all the changes you make and easily review your contributions. Individual developers create new work in Git branches, which is then reviewed before being merged into the master branch, which holds the most recent and stable version of the project. By using version control, developers can:
Keep track of changes: Version control allows developers to keep track of changes made to the codebase, including who made the change, when the change was made, and why the change was made.
Work collaboratively: Version control enables developers to work collaboratively with other team members by providing a centralized repository to store code and metadata. Team members can check out the code, make changes, and merge changes back into the repository.
Rollback changes: In case of an issue or error, developers can roll back to a previous version of the codebase. This helps to quickly restore the application to a working state.
Review code changes: Version control provides a mechanism for code review. Developers can review code changes made by other team members and provide feedback.
Pillar 2: CI/CD for quick, continuous improvement without manual tasks
Continuous integration (CI) automates the process of testing and validating changes to ensure that they can be deployed. It frequently builds on a Git-based workflow. Continuous delivery (CD) is the practice of releasing small, frequent updates to users through an automated process in order to lower the risks involved with major releases. In Salesforce DevOps, CI/CD is used to increase the speed and quality of software development by automating the build, test, and deployment processes.
CI/CD involves the following steps:
Continuous Integration: Developers integrate their code changes into a central repository multiple times a day. The code changes are then automatically built and tested to ensure they do not break the existing codebase.
Continuous Deployment: Once the code changes pass the automated tests, they are automatically deployed to the production environment. This ensures that new features are delivered to users quickly without manual intervention.
CI/CD enables Salesforce DevOps teams to:
Deliver new features quickly: CI/CD automates the build, test, and deployment processes, allowing teams to deliver new features rapidly without manual intervention.
Improve code quality: Automated testing catches errors and issues earlier in the development process, allowing developers to fix them before they become larger issues
Reduce the risk of downtime: Continuous deployment allows teams to deploy new features in a controlled manner, reducing the risk of downtime and service disruptions.
Increase collaboration: CI/CD promotes collaboration between developers, testers, and operations teams by providing a shared and automated platform for building, testing, and deploying applications.
Pillar 3: Automated Testing for a reliable and clean code free of defects
Software testing is a crucial part of the development process, and Salesforce mandates that developers test at least 75% of all new code before deploying it to a live organization. But if you want to make sure that your team can easily review and dependably build on your code, the tests you write must be practical and meaningful. In Salesforce DevOps, automated testing can be used to test various aspects of the application, including:
Unit testing: Developers use unit tests to test individual components of the application, such as classes, triggers, and methods.
Integration testing: Integration testing involves testing how different components of the application interact with each other.
Regression testing: Regression testing is used to test the application after changes have been made to ensure that the changes do not introduce new defects.
Automated testing offers several benefits to Salesforce DevOps teams, including:
Reduced manual effort: Automated testing eliminates the need for manual testing, saving time and effort.
Improved code quality: Automated testing helps to ensure that the code is clean, bug-free, and meets functional and non-functional requirements.
Faster feedback: Automated testing provides fast feedback on the quality of the code, enabling developers to quickly identify and fix defects.
Increased confidence: Automated testing increases confidence in the quality of the software, which is important for maintaining customer satisfaction and avoiding service disruptions.
Pillar 4: Backups- Allowing quick and diligent recovery
In the event of a disaster, whether it be accidental data loss, data corruption as a result of third-party integration, malicious behavior on the part of disgruntled employees, or even a Salesforce platform outage, having a backup of your customer and organization's data is crucial. However, the effectiveness of a backup solution depends on your ability to restore from it. DevOps relies heavily on backups and organization security to make sure that businesses can quickly get back to normal operations. Here are some of the key reasons why backup is essential for swift and complete disaster recovery in Salesforce DevOps:
Protection against data loss: Backup is critical for protecting against data loss in case of any system failure or human error. In the absence of a reliable backup, organizations risk losing valuable data, including customer information, transactions, and other critical business data. With a proper backup plan, it's possible to quickly recover the lost data and resume normal operations.
Faster recovery time: Having a reliable backup in place allows for faster recovery time in case of any disruption. This means that organizations can quickly get back to their normal operations, reducing the downtime and minimizing the impact of the disruption.
Comprehensive data recovery: A comprehensive backup and recovery plan ensures that all data is protected and recoverable, including metadata, configurations, and customizations. This helps organizations to avoid any loss of critical data, including custom code, configurations, and other important assets.
Compliance and regulatory requirements: Many organizations are required to comply with regulatory requirements, such as data retention, backup, and recovery. Having a reliable backup plan ensures that organizations meet these requirements, avoiding any potential penalties or legal issues.
Peace of mind: A reliable backup plan gives organizations peace of mind, knowing that their data is secure and recoverable in case of any disruption. This allows organizations to focus on their core business functions without worrying about any potential data loss or downtime.
In order to quickly restore complex data hierarchies to their orgs before too much damage is done, teams that have tools and procedures in place to monitor and roll back changes to their data and metadata are also in a position to do so. In a nutshell, a clever backup solution will let you:
Keep track of any additions or deletions to your organization's data as well as metadata monitoring
To restore data and metadata, employ your adapted deployment procedure.
Upload backup data to test environments like sandboxes
To comply with data protection laws, mask and delete records.
DevOps practices have become increasingly important in software development as organizations aim to deliver high-quality software more efficiently. The four pillars of DevOps - version control, continuous integration, automated testing, and backup - are crucial for successful implementation. Salesforce development is no exception, and adopting DevOps practices can significantly benefit a team by promoting collaboration, automation, and agility.
With Winobell's expertise in Salesforce implementation, the company can help organizations develop and implement a strategy for DevOps practices that aligns with their business goals. Winobell can assist with version control, continuous integration, automated testing, and backup and recovery processes, resulting in faster and more reliable software delivery with better quality. By working with Winobell, organizations can achieve the most efficient Salesforce DevOps practices and stay ahead in an increasingly competitive market.
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