The Impact of Automation in Salesforce Sandbox Management
Salesforce sandbox management both reduces risk and increases efficiency for development pipelines. It is a series of methods and tools aimed at optimizing developing, testing, and training by utilizing an entirely different environment.
But of course, these are all methods with the unified goal of creating a secure and functional update or application. The satisfaction of your end user is the ultimate metric that can point to the level of success achieved in your development efforts.
Salesforce sandbox management involves overseeing and optimizing various tools that allow your developers to get the most from their efforts.
The sandboxes themselves are tools that provide a series of benefits to development teams. Working in a separate environment helps reduce disruptions, safely test new features, and increase overall productivity.
And while these benefits come from utilizing sandboxes in Salesforce development, not all teams will see the same levels of these benefits. There are ways to magnify the positive impacts of this practice with the help of automation.
We know that automation is a powerful tool that assists in many other aspects of development pipelines, but how does it impact Salesforce sandbox management?
1. Synchronized Versions
Sandboxes can be utilized to streamline the efforts of large development teams that can be spread across various geographic areas. This provides a host of benefits such as avoiding any impact with the live environment as changes are introduced, but it can also become convoluted and confusing.
Salesforce sandbox management greatly benefits from aligning the efforts of the various teams and various versions of a development project.
Automation can be used to align the releases from multiple environments to avoid overwrites and keep your DevSecOps pipeline operating smoothly.
Larger teams can accomplish more, but there is an inherent risk of created a complicated situation. Utilizing the proper Salesforce sandbox management tools helps avoid this.
2. Reduction of Redundant Data
Redundant data makes it more difficult to backup your system, confuses your team members, and can lead to coding mistakes when merges grow unnecessarily large. Multiple developers working in separate environments run the risk of working on the same issues and creating this redundant data.
A Salesforce sandbox management tool automatically compares the various instances and removes redundant data.
Depending on the size of your development team and how spread out everybody is, manually checking each environment for redundant data is extremely time consuming at best, and impossible at worst. Implementing automated services saves your team time and improves the overall quality of the final product.
3. Simplified Commits
Changes made within your Salesforce sandbox environments can be tested and refined before they are committed into the shared repository. However, moving these changes from one environment to another can be difficult when considering the verifications and tests that should be utilized before doing so.
Automating the tasks associated with code commits reduces the workload on your team members and reduces the likelihood of errors.
These changes can be committed as your team moves along with options such as Add to Destination and Delete from Destination. These options remove superfluous tasks from your team’s lists so they can focus on creating the strongest and most secure code possible.
4. Anonymized Data
Production data can occasionally contain sensitive data. And as we’ve discussed in the past, a large part of a successful data security plan is to limit the exposure of any potentially sensitive data. Salesforce sandboxes open up this production data to a large number of team members.
Automatic anonymization reduces the potential for exposing sensitive data.
It might seem paranoid to protect data from your own team members, but it’s essential to cover all your bases when it comes to data security. Your team members can expose this data even if they don’t harbor malicious intent.
Properly protecting data involves reducing every opportunity for leaks, whether accidental or intentional.
5. Streamlined Operations
It’s no secret that even our best team members will occasionally make mistakes. An optimized DevSecOps pipeline makes use of every opportunity for utilizing automation. This could include everything from continuous integration & delivery to static code analysis.
Automating aspects of Salesforce sandbox management ensures essential aspects of the process are quickly and reliably performed.
Any reduction in time spent on functions within a DevSecOps pipeline will increase your ROI. Salesforce sandbox management is no exception. Synchronizing, comparing, and committing will all benefit from the help of automated services.
6. Improved Reporting
You won’t be able to fully understand what is going on in your sandboxes without adequate logs and reports. These offer visibility into the success of your efforts, as well as warnings about potential security vulnerabilities and destructive changes to the code repository.
Automated logs and reports within your Salesforce sandboxes can be set so nothing slips past your attention.
Manually running these reports will be tedious and difficult to maintain on a repeated basis. This leads to missed opportunities and possibly even harmful outcomes. Automate these informative reports with a sandbox management tool and stay on top of the health of your sandboxes.
7. Reliable Backups
Contemporary updates are an essential aspect of your data security strategy. Sandboxes need to be included in the various areas of your Salesforce system to be backed up.
Automated system backups can be scheduled and repeated so you are never left in the dark should a data loss event occur.
Backing up your Salesforce data is just one aspect of this essential service. There also needs to be a restore functionality that can quickly and reliably get your system data repopulated, so your operations are not negatively affected.
Automation plays a huge role in various aspects of your Salesforce DevSecOps pipeline. Sandbox management is an important area of this system that benefits from the power of automated tools which provides a series of benefits to your overall development efforts.