Dreamforce 2016 – Business Process: When to Use Flow, Workflow and Apex

 In blog, CRM

At Dreamforce 2016, Better Partners’ VP of Delivery and Operation, Brian Kwong, presented on when to use the various automation tools available in Salesforce.

This is becoming a more important topic as Salesforce automation tools are becoming more robust, admin-friendly, and often working with each other.

There are three primary automation tools in Salesforce:

  • Process Builder / Workflow Rules
  • Visual Workflow (Flow)
  • Apex

Workflow rules is the original admin-friendly automation tool. This tool is being replaced by Process Builder, another admin-friendly tool that is more robust with more functionality.

Visual Workflow, or Flow as it’s commonly called, is also an admin-friendly tool. It is more complicated than Process Builder. To be successful, the user needs to understand some basic programing vocabulary and some basic programming processes. Flow cannot be called on its own and requires a user to specifically call (Click a button) or be called by another feature like Process Builder or Apex.

The final tool is Apex which is the programming language of the Salesforce force.com platform. It’s not considered to be admin-friendly and does require knowledge of programming.

Knowing when to use each of these tools and when to use them together is a very important part of creating a holistic solution. Each has it’s own benefits and downsides. For example, the Admin-friendly tools are easy to update and maintain since they require not code. These tools can be used directly in production, although Better Partners strongly recommends using  a sandbox for creating and testing before any automation is done in your live environment.

Salesforce recorded the video. You can see the chatter session and video at the following URL, but you will need to have attended Dreamforce: https://success.salesforce.com/MyAgenda?eventId=a1Q3000000qQOd9EAG#/session/a2q3A000000LBoTQAW

You can also see the video at this link: http://play.vidyard.com/ap2P8aqGZfJVJUuMKbXGV1 

Or just view it down below

Brian Kwong
Brian has been an Admin/Developer on the Salesforce platform since 2007. He was recognized as a Salesforce MVP in 2012 and has been renewed each year. Brian is a passionate supporter of the Salesforce community and is a co-leader for the Wisconsin Salesforce User Group. Brian specializes in business automation, business analyst, and best practices. He's the Vice President of Delivery and Operations at Better Partners.
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