The Best Way to Save Time on Deployments

Alex Colburn – April 13, 2021

The Developers Speak is a video series featuring certified Salesforce consultants at Digital Mass. They come to you twice a month to help bridge the gap between business problems and technical solutions.

On this episode of The Developers Speak, Ethan is back to tell you all about the best way to automate deployments and the benefits that you'll see from doing so.

Why you should use source control in Salesforce

Hey, I'm Ethan. I'm a Salesforce developer at Digital Mass. I'm back to talk about source control and how it fits into Salesforce. Source control is a really important tool used by most of the software industry, but that's not the case when it comes to Salesforce for a variety of reasons. One of the reasons that source control isn't as common in Salesforce is because not everything in Salesforce is code. In fact, in some Salesforce orgs, almost nothing is code, and in other orgs, almost everything is code. This can make developing an implementation strategy around source control very difficult and extremely nuanced. Fortunately, for us, there are tools like Gearset, Auto Rabbit, and Git that can make this a lot easier.

Features are released faster with continuous integration

The first part of source control (CI/CD) is CI, which stands for continuous integration. Taking the time to set up the implementation so that it fits in your team is going to help benefit you for a very long time. By taking time to properly implement this, you'll see features come out faster, have fewer developers overwriting code, and have less gatekeeping on a slew of stories because they all touch the same file.

Diagnose problems faster with continuous deployment

The other side of this is source control (CI/CD) is CD, which stands for continuous deployment. Continuous deployment means that developers are constantly pushing code. Whether that be to QA (quality assurance), to your staging environment, or to production. The idea is that the more deployments that you have, the smaller they are, and the easier it is to diagnose bugs. With a proper CD implementation, you can very easily go through the commit history and see what has been deployed by who, and quickly diagnose the problems.

Using tools like Gearset or Auto Rabbit, you can set up jobs that listen to these branches and when you push changes branches they will auto-deploy to your org. It's going to save you time because you're not going to have to manage your deployments as strictly. With the ability for the developers to work on similar features, you'll speed up development, increase the quality of your code, and therefore, the health of your Salesforce org.

About the developer:

Ethan King's love for tech is rooted in being surrounded by techies all of his life. By middle school, he was building computers from scratch, and through high school, he started to dabble with code. Ethan continued his formal education at Anoka Technical College, where he received his degree in Computer Software Engineering.

While he was getting his degree, Ethan worked as a Web Developer and taught guitar lessons. He joined the Digital Mass team at the top of 2019 and has since gotten the Salesforce Administrator and Salesforce Platform Developer l certifications.

Outside of work, Ethan likes to play guitar, be outdoors hunting or fishing and loves a good Stephen King Novel (no, they're not related).