Salesforce Testing: 5 Quick Wins from Better Testing Practices

ForeSight for Salesforce

Salesforce Testing is a critical element of Salesforce administration and development. All Salesforce specialists need to apply testing methodologies to their areas of expertise.

Whether you are an architect creating a complex integration, a marketer sending out a drip campaign, or an admin rolling out minor changes to a page layout, you must test your enhancement design in your environment against its original requirements. This will identify potential errors, flaws, or areas of improvement. 

Just as you wouldn’t serve spaghetti without tasting it first, you should never release a Salesforce enhancement without testing it along the way.

The Salesforce Ecosystem is as customizable as it is complex. Ensuring enhancements and feature updates don’t crash or compromise other elements of your Salesforce environment will save you and your users substantial heartache.

Salesforce Testing is key to smooth and efficient project deployment. This is especially true with automated functional testing, where things you may not have considered during a build pop up due to the amount of integrated and connected features within Salesforce.

Proper testing brings these unknowns to the surface, giving you the ability to fix and perfect a new functionality before deploying it into production.

In this post, we will review two phases of Salesforce testing, as well as offer up five quick wins you can achieve to make your deployment a success.

Best Practices for Salesforce Testing Webinar

Salesforce Testing: An Overview of Functional and User Acceptance Testing

There are two main types of Salesforce testing: Salesforce Functional Testing and Salesforce UAT Testing.

Salesforce Functional Testing

The first phase of software testing that takes place post-development is functional testing.

It involves the tester making sure that whatever has been developed works alongside the existing org. This means reviewing each new feature thoroughly, checking for bugs and confirming the new functionality works from start to finish.

The tester then ensures the new development works alongside the existing features. They also make sure there haven’t been any negative impacts on the existing org.

The ultimate goal of Salesforce functional testing is to make sure you have something that works–and nothing has broken that already exists. This testing can take many forms.

Let’s say you have an unorthodox Sales VP who wants a Salesforce app tailored to the specific needs and processes of his team. On top of that, he also wants no other sales leaders in the org to see his team’s work.

To do this, you’d have to ensure that the more complicated elements of the build (such as Process Builder, Validation Rules or even Apex classes) work as intended.

You’d also have to make sure that they weren’t visible to external users, and that they didn’t inadvertently harm any other existing Sales processes in the org.

Functional testing in a Salesforce UAT Sandbox will help ensure that your new App operates as planned, while preserving your existing architecture and security model.

With so many deployments and testing stages occurring, you will find it helpful to use a tool that assists with test management. Panaya ForeSight for Salesforce is one such tool that gives you the ability to structure your testing and deployments, allowing you to discover any major issues early on in the testing cycle, and not post-deployment.

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Salesforce UAT Testing

Once functional testing has been completed, you’re ready for User Acceptance Testing. Here, a tester works through different processes, using the new functionality in a real-world business case. Thus, verifying the user is seeing only the elements they need to see.

Think back to the Sales VP we referenced earlier. After functional testing verifies the design works as intended, it’s critical to test the design against the VP and select members of his team.

Running a sample of end users through the new build ensures they can perform all relevant tasks, while also preserving the secrecy of their work. It also confirms that no design elements have been overlooked.

UAT also clarifies requirements that weren’t clear in the initial design. It is the best strategic “CYA” a release team can have when making sure system changes are palatable to and sanctioned by their intended audience.

The goal with Salesforce Functional and UAT testing is to ensure your new development works properly in any business situation.

Here Are Five Quick Wins You Can Achieve When You implement Salesforce Testing:

Win #1: Get End User Buy-In and Adoption Before You Go Live

There is nothing more painful than expending resources on a build only to have users refuse to utilize your new design. One way you can avoid that situation is by designing for and involving your stakeholders in your development and testing process.

Paying careful attention to your end users’ needs, and even having them act as testers, shows them your design is meant to make their lives easier. Allowing end users to voice their thoughts and suggestions will create a sense of trust in your build. Ensuring that your design is serving the people who need it most.

Stakeholder involvement in UAT is a critical diplomatic step. As such, testing on influential voices in departments affected by your new rollout will create goodwill and positive anticipation during your change management process.

Tip: install the free “Salesforce Adoption Dashboards” Managed Package to monitor use of your org after a deployment.

Salesforce Adoption Dashboards

Win #2: Fix Problems Early

Deployments are actually a part of Salesforce functional testing, and if code doesn’t get test coverage in the change set, you will have to fix it. So, as you’re progressing through your project, you don’t want to find that work you completed weeks ago doesn’t function as expected.

Deploying and testing regularly prevents this, allowing you to confirm that your development works properly throughout the build. Once you have deployed to the relevant sandbox, you can then let your users get on with UAT testing in confidence.

Risk-based testing is a particularly crucial part of your testing process. Minimize testing efforts by identifying what needs to be tested based on risk levels, and save resources and time by not testing unnecessary things.

Solutions like Panaya ForeSight identify what is going to break or be affected by your planned change, and NEEDS to be tested. The ForeSight solution achieves this through impact analysis, which can pinpoint exactly where in your code or declarative objects something will break, allowing you to add these specific, predetermined risks to your testing plan. Increase accuracy in your testing provided by full visibility, and no longer spend resources testing things that are not at risk of breaking.

Discover

Win #3: Use Feedback from UAT on Your Release Roadmap

One of the greatest challenges in Salesforce Development is avoiding “Mission Creep.” Mission Creep happens when stakeholders stack new requirements onto your design and deployment, obscuring the original project and creating potential delays.

Continuous Salesforce Testing allows you to head Mission Creep off at the pass, while incorporating feedback from your users into a Phase II or future release. Rolling user feedback into your Release Roadmap will show that you’re in touch with the needs of your company and honoring your mission of continuous improvement, while ensuring your deployment stays on track.

Salesforce Testing Diagram

Win #4: Use Testing Tools to Streamline Your Process

There are loads of different Salesforce testing tools that you can use to help you through the testing process. For example, a tool that helps you manage testing, such as Panaya ForeSight for Salesforce, is vital for giving structure to your testing process, assigning tasks, providing visibility into testing scope and making it easy to manage throughout a project.

ForeSight, specifically, allows you to import your test repository and predicts which tests are appropriate to execute for each new change. It  identifies your test script gaps, automates test execution assignments, and streamlines your collaboration between developers, testers and users with real-time synchronization.

Based on risk-based testing, the ForeSight solution provides you with insights into testing scope and estimation before you even begin a project. The impact analysis tool can tell you what exactly will break, easily adds components in your scope to your test plans, identifies and automatically assigns test scripts from your repository, and creates a test flow easily managed by different stakeholders in your organization.

For setting up repeated UI-focused unit tests, tasks and running cross-browser testing, utilize an open source tool like Selenium. Selenium mimics a user’s actions within a browser and allows testing automation, and even Salesforce itself uses Selenium in their development process.

Finally, consider setting up a custom object in your Salesforce Org to monitor your test planning and future projects–having a central repository for your design work and testing will allow for easier reporting and identification of future issues.

Opportunities stage Impact

Win #5: Make Future Feature Releases Even Easier

Establishing solid test criteria and practices up front will enforce best practices in your development team. It will also condition your testing end users to provide consistent, actionable feedback.

Developing a rhythm to design and testing creates a base-level team understanding of what goes into a feature release. It teaches both end users and design teams what to expect.

Good testing and development practices, such as User Acceptance Testing, Performance Testing, and Code Reviews, allows teams tasked with Salesforce development to operate with greater efficiency. Thanks in large part to knowing which protocols their work must follow.

Salesforce Testing Roundtable

Happy Testing!

With these Salesforce testing best practices and tips alongside tools such as Panaya ForeSight’s risk-based testing solution, you will be able to greatly improve functional and UAT testing for your projects.

Performing sufficient UAT and functional testing in your Salesforce deployments will allow you to conduct frictionless rollouts; ensuring that your users are bought in, that bugs are squashed early, and that testing runs efficiently in your future roadmaps.

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