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Test Automation for Salesforce – Challenges and Best Practices

test automation for Salesforce

Salesforce has become the premier cloud-based Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system for global enterprises worldwide. Over 88% of Fortune 100 companies use at least one Salesforce app. It’s an integrated solution that offers an end-to-end system for companies to connect with their customers. But as is the case with almost every cloud-based SaaS product, the success of Salesforce implementation depends a lot on quality assurance and testing. 

The configurations, integrations, and workflows in a Salesforce application are very complex. This makes manual testing a time-consuming, laborious, and error-prone endeavor. On the other hand, with the right strategy and Salesforce test automation solution, you reduce risk, increase test coverage, speed up software delivery, and enhance product quality. In addition, automated tests help simplify the entire QA process by ensuring efficient and accurate testing. 

But test automation brings forth its own set of challenges. Without the right strategy in place, automation becomes very hard to build and maintain, pretty much negating any measurable benefits that you could see. This blog covers the most common challenges faced by Salesforce testers and the best practices that every successful automation strategy must follow. 

What are the Challenges of Salesforce Test Automation? 

Salesforce helps businesses gain 20% in revenue and 50% in ROI within just one year if implemented right. But the underlying applications can be challenging to test, reducing the possibility of a positive impact. Here are the challenges that will derail your Salesforce test automation strategy. 

  1. Frequent system updates – To remain competitive and make their platform better, Salesforce implements system updates regularly. This makes life difficult for test engineers who have to write brand new code every time an update is released. 
  1. Shadow DOMs – Salesforce relies on shadow DOMs to isolate its components. Shadow DOM is a standard that encapsulates the internal document object model structure of a web component. Encapsulating the DOM gives developers the ability to protect the component from being manipulated. This makes it very difficult for testers to identify elements during automation. 
  1. Heavy DOM structure – The internal DOM structure is called the shadow tree. Salesforce has very complex shadow trees resulting in a heavy DOM structure. Any test automation will need significant time to access them. 
  1. Hidden element identifiers – Test automation relies on element details to identify and test visual components of an application. Since Salesforce hides the identifiers, test automation becomes hard. 
  2. Security constraints – Due to Android security features, Salesforce doesn’t allow screenshots. This compels testers to rely on third-party screenshot applications or developers to remove the Android security flag. 
  1. Performance failure – Since Salesforce is a data-heavy platform, it works a bit slow on mobiles causing the test script to time out and fail. The wrong framework can also cause performance issues. 
  1. Dynamic content – The dynamic nature of Salesforce forms makes it impossible to work with XPath or index-based locator strategy. Instead, a label-based locator strategy needs to be employed. 

What are the Best Practices?  

Now that we’ve learned that automating tests for Salesforce is potentially a difficult task let’s discuss the best practices that help ensure that your test strategy delivers maximum ROI. 

1. Designing an effective test strategy 

Your test strategy must clearly define your objectives, stakeholders, tools, and different testing phases. Documenting the various testing phases helps identify bottlenecks and hurdles that can arise. Also, focus on keeping the tests small and geared towards one aim, to reduce errors. 

2. Involve all the right stakeholders in the testing process

A robust test automation strategy entails partnering with the right testing stakeholder. Working with an expert Salesforce testing partner increases the efficacy of your process and reduces bottlenecks. The partner is adept at identifying issues with the application and will also help you meet the required testing parameters. 

3. Begin testing earlier in the development cycle

Traditionally, testing occurs just before the release of the software product. Unfortunately, this means that bugs and usability issues inadvertently cause delays in product release. The ‘Shift Left’ approach to testing helps mitigate this issue. It means starting the testing process early in the development cycle. Instead of waiting for the entire application to be built, encourage your testing team to start testing early. 

Shifting left is part of the agile methodology and can produce massive cost benefits. Research has shown that defects if detected early, can cost as low as $80 on average. Conversely, if the vulnerabilities are identified in production, the cost to fix them can skyrocket to around $7600. 

It also gives the testers a chance to familiarize themselves with the testing solution. They’ll also be able to implement a greater variety of tests if they have the time to do so. Moreover, issues in the application will come to the fore early, ensuring the errors do not snowball into major issues down the line. 

4. Choose the right test automation solution

The success of your test strategy depends on the quality of the test software you’re using. Ensure that the solution you choose is robust yet flexible enough to integrate with your current systems. With a test automation solution like Avo Assure, you can be sure of a high-quality and seamless no-code testing experience. The Enterprise Grid Report for Test Automation, Summer 2021 by G2, recognized Avo Assure as a ‘High-Performer’ in this space. 

What Makes for an Ideal Test Automation Solution? 

Even though automating Salesforce tests is a complicated affair, using an enterprise-grade testing solution such as Avo Assure removes many constraints that can otherwise affect the testing results. Avo Assure is a no-code test automation solution that effectively handles challenges such as object dependency, frame navigation, code reusability, and dynamic content.

See how Avo Assure helped a Fortune 500 manufacturer reduce overall testing costs for its SAP and non-SAP(including Salesforce) applications by almost 45%. To learn more about how Avo Assure makes your Salesforce testing strategy more efficient, schedule a demo today. 

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