If you are new to Salesforce, or an established professional but unfamiliar with Flow, there has never been a better time to learn. You may think Flow is complex or not know where to start. In either case, this post is here to help you.
What is Salesforce Flow?
Flow is a key piece of Salesforce’s point-and-click (declarative) functionality. It provides admins and developers a visual way to create complex logic, within Salesforce.
Not only does this make it easier to build, but it is also easier to maintain than code (i.e. Apex).
There are different types of Flow. The most common ones include:
- Screen Flow. Create a custom ‘wizard’ style solution to guide users through a process (e.g. call scripting)
- Record-Triggered Flow. Runs when records are created, updated or deleted, based on your criteria
- Autolaunched Flow. Triggered automatically by other processes
- Schedule-Triggered Flow. Schedule a Flow to run a process in batches, either once, daily, or weekly
Why do I need to learn it?
Why should you learn Flow? Here are some reasons:
- Retirement and Migration. Did you know Workflow and Process Builders are being retired? Knowing only Workflow and Process Builder is not a good career move. Also, it will make it harder to help your business migrate to Flow when the time comes
- Innovation. Without Flow, you are seriously limiting your automation options. It has many capabilities and is being further improved in recent releases
- Simplify code. Whilst Flow is point and click, there can be scenarios where some code is needed. With Flow, you can ‘invoke’ custom code. Doing this via a Flow makes it easier to see how and why this occurs for non-developers
- Efficiency and Performance. Compared with Workflow and Process Builder, flows provide more flexibility to create efficient automation. You also have access to features such as before-save triggered Flows, which can run 10 times faster than ‘after-save’ Flows
- Debugging: Flow has in-built debugging tools to help troubleshoot issues. This can save you time and effort, compared to other tools such as Process Builder
- Structure: Process Builders and Workflows can become hard to structure and manage. Flows provide tools making it easier to ensure automation is kept tidy within your system. This will make your life easier
How can I learn to use Flow?
As with preparing for a Certification, there are many resources to help you learn Flows. Here are some resources to help you get started. However, this is not exhaustive. Find the resources that support your learning style.
There are a number of great blogs to choose from which focus on Flows:
- Automation Champion: Extensive catalogue of Flow tutorials and walkthroughs
- FlowFanatic: Flow challenges & solutions. Helps inspire you to learn more about what Flow can do
- Salesforce Flowsome: Mix of introductory, how to and scenario based Flow resources
- UnofficialSF: Tutorials and components to extend your Flow
Massive Open Online Courses (MOOC)
- Trials/Previews of the course
- Date of the course – Flow is receiving updates every release currently. Content could soon become dated!
This will help you determine if it is the right course for you.
Unsurprisingly, Trailhead has a number of resources to help you get started with Flow. Here are some resources to try:
Learning Flow does have a steeper learning curve than Workflow and Process Builder. However, this is because you can do so much more with it. Hopefully the resources above will give you a good starting point.
Here are some additional tips to bear in mind:
- Pace yourself. You will not know everything straight away. As you learn more, you’ll find more ways to improve and optimise your Flows. Keep going!
- Try things out. The best way to learn Flow is to try things out. Perhaps follow tutorials in the resource above and then experiment on your own. You will soon think of many use cases for Flow!
- Use the Description fields. This is always important, but especially when learning Flow. As you learn more, you’ll realise ways to improve what you built previously. Using Description fields will help you remember why you did something, and likely help you improve it in future
- Hit an error message and not sure what to do? Not a problem! If you are unsure what to do, look up the error message on Google/the Community. Most of the time, it will be an issue someone else has encountered.
Above all, keep practicing. You will soon be making Flows which make your org so much easier for your users!
Flow is often the declarative tool of choice for automating business processes in Salesforce. With the upcoming retirement of Workflow and Process Builder and numerous feature enhancements, this is only going to continue. Now is a great time to learn Flow and its capabilities. There are various resources out there to help, such as Blogs, Massive Open Online Courses (MOOC) (e.g. Udemy, YouTube, Trailhead
I hope this has been useful! If it has, please join the SFDC Penguin LinkedIn Group for regular tips and updates!
Bonus Penguin Fact
Adélie Penguins are the smallest species of Penguin in the Antarctic. However, they are notorious for being feisty. They are also seemingly opportunistic!
In this video, an Adélie Penguin managed to both evade a predator, whilst getting a free ride to the other penguins. Check it out here!
Found this article useful? Why not share!