Real-World Advice for New Salesforce Developers

At this years Dreamforce (2014), I did a talk about Career Strategies for Developers Transitioning to Salesforce. I interviewed several developers, who all had some great advice to share. Even though I have spotlighted three developers who had a lot to share, this post is a summary of some of the best advice they ALL offered for those developers new to the platform.

EricBellEric Bell – Salesforce Developer at Polymorph Corporation

“As in everything else execution is critical. Newbies will make many, many mistakes but it in the actual doing it that they have the best chance of learning, improving and mastering. They need someone with experience to review their work and make improvement suggestions. This is the only thing that counts in the end – doing it.”

RahulBorga  Rahul Suresh Borgaonkar – Salesforce Developer at SYNETY PLC

“Certification will give you basic knowledge but experience counts a lot. Always try to get hands on approach if you find anything new as you will remember it for future use. Read latest blog updates and developer board all the time. Get inspired by people who have achieved all Salesforce certification and try to follow them. This will refresh your knowledge and keep you in learning mode.”

MichaelClaytonMichael Clayton – Software Developer at American Thoraic Society

“Go light in salesforce. the ease of development can sometimes encourage bad habits, like quick and dirty code.”

HargobindSinghHargobind Singh – Technical Architect at Acromobile

“Read Documentation, End-To-End. No exceptions or shortcuts. Study guides, e.g. Apex Guide, Visualforce Guide, and Apex_API.pdf have a lot of information. Though it takes time to read, and it might seem that just reading relevant topics is enough… but this would be time well spent. There are so many aspects of everything in Salesforce that knowing things completely is the only road to success. In addition, if a developer knows all aspects, they can implement an optimum solutions. In my whole career, I have seen a lot of newbie developers writing non-optimized code, and using code where they can use point-and-click, or not implementing not-to-hit governor limits. “

JasonHammerleJason Hammerle – Salesforce Technical Architect at PROS

“If you already program in Java or C# then the transition will be very easy for you.  If you are a front end developer then your experience would likely be extremely valuable to a Salesforce development team.  And to all other developers (and even managers), you can be a Salesforce developer too by leveraging the great Salesforce training course, Salesforce resources, Success forums, blogs, and the many many people (like Sara) that have already transitioned and really want to help you.  I also very much would like to help anyone that wants to make this transition too.”

michaelwelburnMichael Welburn – Salesforce Technical Architect at 7Summits

“Pay attention to the best practices that are documented, you will see them ALL. THE. TIME. The workbooks that Salesforce provides for, Apex, and VF are also extremely helpful. Beyond that, just get your hands dirty in a dev org! “




Slide Deck from Dreamforce 14 Session

SlideDeckOn Tuesday I had the honor of speaking at a Dreamforce 14 session titled, “Career Strategies for Developers Transitioning to Salesforce”. A few people at the session asked whether my slide deck would be made available and I promised them I would post it on my blog, so that is the main purpose for this post. If you are interested in the slides from my session, you can find them here.

If you are interested in the other developers I interviewed to prepare for this session, then you can check them out here. I will be adding one each week.

And if you came by the session, THANKS!!!

Speaking at Dreamforce 2014

I am very excited to announce that I will be presenting a session at the 2014 Dreamforce Developer Track entitled, “Career DreamforceStrategies for Developers Transitioning to Salesforce“. The main goal for this session is to offer practical ways that experienced developers that are just new to Salesforce can transition their skills to the platform.

I would love to hear from any of you that may be facing this unique challenge – either to share with me your experiences or to just tell me what you would like to learn. Please feel free to contact me through this blog with ANY feedback you may have. All feedback is welcome as I want this to be coming from multiple perspectives. Just go to the About Sara page and submit the contact form and I promise to get back to you quickly.

I really think this a chance to talk openly about something that is not often spoken of and I hope to answer the following questions:

How do you successfully capitalize on your existing development skills when moving to a new platform such as Salesforce?


What resources can you access to help you make the most of your transition?


Career and Survival Strategies for Software Developers

QuestionsI just watched a Pluralsight course that I think EVERY software developer should watch. It is for developers brand new to the field, those that have been developing for only a few years, and those that have been developing for many years.

The course is general and non-technical, but is highly informative, extremely insightful, and remarkably hilarious.

The course is titled, “Career and Survival Strategies for Software Developers” by Dan Appleman. Dan talks honestly about the things that are important to every developer, but that are oddly hardly ever mentioned. Things like:

“How do I keep up with the latest technologies and not become obsolete?”

“How do I deal with all the professional politics that go along with being a developer?”

“How do I make the kind of money I need or want?”

So please take the time to watch this course and let me know what you think…