How DevOps Improves Salesforce Project Quality + Efficiency
DevOps is a software development framework that combines various philosophies, methods, and tools to streamline delivery and improve key processes. Harvard Business Review’s recent survey of companies using DevOps practices revealed that, while many are still working out the logistics, they were reaping financial and process benefits from the framework.
Here are some of the key takeaways of that study and the steps you can take to implement Salesforce DevOps successfully into your organization.
- The Business Benefits of DevOps
- 6 Tips for Implementing DevOps in Salesforce Projects
- Streamline the Development Process With a Reliable Development Platform
The Business Benefits of DevOps
Approximately two-thirds of the survey respondents reported using DevOps in recent projects. The majority of those respondents said the framework increased productivity among teams, improved customer relevance, shortened speed to market, and improved their product quality.
Some of the primary benefits of DevOps processes include:
Fast Development and Deployment
Speedy development and deployment are critical for companies that produce their own software. According to the Harvard study, 63% of respondents said speed was very important, while another 24% said it was somewhat important. Implementing DevOps into your Salesforce project management strategy can help your team meet tighter deadlines and stay competitive.
Here is why DevOps is faster than traditional development methodologies:
- Agile methodologies: DevOps is highly compatible with agile and lean project management methodologies, which involve small, self-governing teams working to produce a minimum viable product in a short period.
- Automation: Most DevOps projects incorporate some degree of automation to handle tedious, error-prone tasks. This frees up developers to focus on more important tasks, boosting productivity and reducing potential development snags.
Although it has a steep learning curve, Salesforce’s 2017 DX update makes it significantly easier for teams to incorporate DevOps tools into their continuous integration and continuous delivery pipelines, which can save them time and money in the long term.
Improved Product Quality
Software development models must increase speed to market without losing focus on product quality. Sixty-four percent of respondents who use DevOps saw improvement in product and service quality, while 70% experienced quicker speed to market.
DevOps principles advocate a proactive approach to managing quality issues. If a potential problem could arise, your team can address it quickly. This improves your Salesforce DevOps efficiency by eliminating any major issues your team would ordinarily need to address later.
6 Tips for Implementing DevOps in Salesforce Projects
DevOps is becoming increasingly popular within the Salesforce development sphere, and for good reason. If you are considering implementing DevOps in your next Salesforce project, these tips can help you achieve success.
1. Start Small
Before attempting to implement a DevOps framework for any large-scale projects, experiment with a small, low-stakes project. This is a great way to see how the framework works within your team.
In 2022, Salesforce released the beta version of their DevOps Center—a new project would be a great way to test the update out with your team.
2. Incorporate Security Early On
As the years go on, the number of cybersecurity threats continues to multiply. Protection against both external and internal threats is crucial for keeping your company’s information and operations safe from would-be attackers.
Taking a proactive approach to security is the best way to prevent damage. In DevOps, this means embedding security into every phase of the development process from start to finish.
DevSecOps, which stands for Development, Security, Operations, is the next stage in DevOps’ evolution. It adds an extra layer of security to each step in the standard DevOps framework, allowing you to address concerns before they become significant issues—in this way, it saves valuable time and money that your team would otherwise have spent fixing errors at the end of the project.
3. Leverage Open Source Resources
According to research from Google’s DevOps Research and Assessment team (DORA), companies classified as elite performers are 1.75 times more likely to utilize open source tools such as libraries and platforms.
Free open source software is especially promising, as many companies, including Salesforce, are incorporating it into their core business model. In fact, Salesforce purchased MuleSoft, a popular open source integration platform, for $6.5 billion in 2018.
However, this does bring the question of security back to the forefront. Incorporating DevSecOps can help address any security concerns and get your team on the right path. Further, a DevSecOps platform can help streamline your team’s workflows and help you maximize the potential business benefits.
4. Implement End-to-End Automation
Although many study participants believed using DevOps can produce excellent results, only 10% said their company is very successful at getting new software products through development quickly.
Additionally, half of all respondents and roughly three-quarters of leaders in the space said maintaining a high-quality product was important for staying competitive. Haphazardly speeding development along increases the risk of error and creates an unsustainable work model for most team members. That’s where DevOps comes in.
DevOps principles make extensive use of automation to complete time-consuming tasks and solve problems before they arise, leading to higher-quality applications developed in significantly less time. Salesforce is constantly adding new automated tools and workflows for developers, so testing some out could help you find the best solution for your company.
5. Invest in Employee Training
DevOps methodologies can vary between organizations. Many times, it involves engaging developers and early users in operations processes. To fully embrace the cyclical nature of DevOps, many companies are looking to develop their employees’ skills across disciplines.
Upskilling or cross-skilling employees is becoming popular in many industries to broaden their understanding beyond their specific role and develop a thorough knowledge of the delivery process from end to end. This approach enables employees to jump in at any stage of the process to troubleshoot or assist, improving the chances of high-quality products.
6. Create a Solid DevOps Culture
Successful DevOps implementation is nearly impossible without a strong DevOps culture behind it. Key elements of a DevOps culture include:
- Trust: Transparency and a no-blame policy are essential for building trust among your DevOps team members. When people feel that they are supported, they’re more likely to take the necessary risks to create innovative products and solutions.
- Education: In-depth, hands-on training helps your team members develop their knowledge of DevOps processes and hone their individual skills.
- Data: Using data to inform your decisions is critical for driving positive results and making your company more receptive overall to using DevOps.
- Common goals: Having a shared goal motivates team members to collaborate more closely and consistently.
Streamline the Development Process With a Reliable Development Platform
Having the right tools at your disposal can significantly improve your chances of successful DevOps implementation. AutoRABIT’s off-platform development solution allows you to work outside your Salesforce orgs so you can transfer changes between development environments smoothly and easily. Schedule a demo today for more information.