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Salesforce unlocked packages compared to monolithic orgs

Monoliths are not fun

In today’s fast-paced business environment, organizations are constantly looking for effective ways to manage and optimize their Salesforce implementations. As the Salesforce ecosystem continues to evolve, it’s essential for companies to understand the different approaches to Salesforce development and deployment. In this article, we will provide a detailed comparison of Salesforce Unlocked Packages and Monolithic Salesforce Orgs, focusing on their key differences and their impact on deployment improvements and developer experience.

Salesforce Unlocked Packages

Salesforce Unlocked Packages is a modern development and deployment methodology introduced in 2018. It represents a modular and source-driven approach to Salesforce development that promotes separation of concerns, better organization, and easier collaboration. Unlocked Packages are built on the Salesforce DX platform, allowing developers to manage their Salesforce applications as versioned, modular artifacts. This means that developers can create, test, and deploy different parts of their applications independently, which leads to a more agile and efficient development process.

Monolithic Salesforce Orgs

In contrast, Monolithic Salesforce Orgs is the traditional approach to Salesforce development and deployment. In this methodology, all customization and configurations are made directly in a single Salesforce organization (org), which leads to a more tightly-coupled and interdependent codebase. While this approach has been the norm for many years, it poses several challenges, such as limited code reusability, difficulty in managing dependencies, and increased complexity in deployment and rollback processes.

Comparison: Unlocked Packages vs. Monolithic Orgs

  1. Modularity and Separation of Concerns

Unlocked Packages encourage a modular approach to Salesforce development, allowing teams to break down applications into smaller, more manageable units. This results in better separation of concerns, increased code reusability, and easier management of dependencies. In contrast, Monolithic Orgs tend to have a tightly-coupled codebase, which can lead to increased complexity and difficulty in maintaining and scaling applications.

  1. Version Control and Collaboration

Salesforce DX, the foundation for Unlocked Packages, provides native support for version control systems like Git, enabling teams to collaborate more efficiently and track changes over time. Monolithic Orgs, on the other hand, often lack robust version control, making it challenging to manage changes and collaborate effectively.

  1. Deployment Improvements

Unlocked Packages streamline the deployment process by allowing developers to deploy specific packages rather than the entire org. This results in faster deployments, fewer conflicts, and easier rollback processes. In contrast, deployments in Monolithic Orgs can be more time-consuming and error-prone, as changes made in one area of the org can inadvertently impact other areas, leading to unforeseen issues.

  1. Testing and Continuous Integration

With Unlocked Packages, developers can create and run unit tests for individual packages, ensuring that each module functions as expected before being integrated into the main application. This approach enables a more robust and efficient testing process, which can help prevent defects from making their way into production environments. In Monolithic Orgs, testing can be more cumbersome, as it often requires testing the entire org, making it harder to isolate and address specific issues.

  1. Developer Experience

Unlocked Packages offer a superior developer experience, as the modular nature of the development process promotes better organization, easier collaboration, and more efficient development. Monolithic Orgs can be more challenging for developers, as they need to navigate a more complex codebase and manage dependencies manually.

Salesforce Unlocked Packages offer significant advantages over Monolithic Salesforce Orgs, including modularity, improved collaboration, streamlined deployments, and an enhanced developer experience. Organizations looking to optimize their Salesforce development process should consider adopting Unlocked Packages to increase agility, reduce complexity, and improve overall application quality.


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