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Preparing customers and partners for cloud updates done right
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René Winkelmeyer    

One thing that always bothered me in the past when working with cloud-based products was the “surprise factor”. While it’s a big advantage of a cloud solution that an update is immediately available for all users – it can also be a big pain.

 

When I talk about the “surprise factor” I’m talking about the availability of new features, changed UI or changed behaviour. Depending on the friendliness of your provider you may get an information that an update will happen on date X (hopefully some time in advance). And you may get a change list of the upcoming changes, so that you can try to prepare yourself and your users.

 

But… do you have access to the update in advance? So that you can play (and mess) around with the changes before your users can? And update your training materials or train your support staff? Or test – if available – your custom integrations? Sadly I experienced situations where that wasn’t the case. Anyone got the same update at the same time. That’s sometimes no real fun, especially when you have to handle tens or hundreds or thousands of users in your environment.

 

This is a point where I’ve fallen in love with our process at Salesforce.

 

As you may know we’re delivering three full releases a year across all our cloud offerings. Which means that customers and partners can expect many feature additions – three times a year. And when I say “many” I mean “many” (see the 492 pages of documentation for the Winter ’17 release here). But lets start from the beginning…

 

Salesforce has the concept of an “organization” (or “org” as it’s mostly called). An org represents a single tenant in our trusted multi-tenant environment.

You can get an org in many different flavors. For example as a free Developer Edition (DE org) or as a fully fledged production org. Besides the regular production orgs we also offer Sandbox orgs. A Sandbox represents a full copy of your code and data, so that you can test-drive changes in your environment their before they hit production. That includes your daily custom development – or our releases.

 

When a new release arises (remember, 3 times a year) you have the opportunity to upgrade your sandbox with a preview upgrade. So you’ve 6-8 weeks time to run your tests, modify your training materials etc. Why 6-8 weeks? Because the preview upgrades are made available in advance to the scheduled production releases (checkout the calendar here).

 

And what when you don’t have a sandbox? No problem – you can get a free Developer Edition org as pre-release org (this link if for the closed Winter ’17 release, Spring ’17 will open soon ;-)). And that allows you also to test all the upcoming features and changes weeks in advance. For free!



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https://blog.winkelmeyer.com/2016/11/preparing-customers-and-partners-for-cloud-updates-done-right/
Nov 07, 2016
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Recent Blog Posts
365
Back from Salesforce World Tour London – I’m feeling pumped!
Fri, May 19th 2017 9:26a   Rene Winkelmeyer
Coming back late last night from our Salesforce World Tour in London I’ve to say that I’m feeling pumped. Again. One thing that stands out for me is how the community joins us to make the World Tour a success. And that doesn’t apply only to London, that applies to any of our World Tour events. I am part of Team Trailhead which obviously runs the Trailhead area. That includes theatres for developers and admins as well as Trailhead learning areas and many demo stations for
126
First developer content published around Salesforce and IBM partnership
Mon, May 15th 2017 7:46p   Rene Winkelmeyer
Part of the Salesforce and IBM partnership is showcasing to our developer audiences about how and where solutions can be combined. As first element of this an example about how to use The Weather Company Data in Salesforce got published today. More to come! Enjoy!
38
engage.ug recap, my Salesforce/IBM slide deck and DevoxxUK
Sat, May 13th 2017 7:39p   Rene Winkelmeyer
Last week was a busy week. I presented at engage.ug in Antwerp about the Salesforce and IBM partnership for developers and I attended Devoxx UK in London (partially). engage.ug Hilde and Theo created again a great event on May 8th and 9th. Brand new venue (a zoo, literally), many sessions, and taking care of the attendees at the highest level possible. It was fun to see many familiar faces, especially after a long time, especially after I left that part of IT around a year ago behind me. It w
7
Find me speaking in Antwerp and London in the next two weeks
Thu, May 4th 2017 6:27a   Rene Winkelmeyer
I’ll be heading to Antwerp and London (twice) in the next two weeks and will give talks about various topics around the Salesforce platform. On May 8th and 9th you’ll find me at engage in Antwerp, Theo’s premier user group event around IBM Collaboration Solutions. There I will give a talk about the Salesforce and IBM partnership from a developers perspective. Right after that I’m attending Devoxx UK in London, which will be fun given the great line-up of speakers. A
4
My first year of riding the Salesforce wave
Mon, May 1st 2017 6:23a   Rene Winkelmeyer
I cannot believe how fast my first year with Salesforce passed by. It was May 1st 2016 was when I joined Salesforce. Here are a few highlights that happened in that time: Speaking at numerous user groups and conferences in Europe and the US Created several open-source contributions to enhance the Salesforce Developer Experience Crafted content for the developer.salesforce.com blog Made the Trailhead Zone at Dreamforce 2016 accessible for vision-impaired people Created and run a kids coding a
2
My first year of riding the Salesforce wave
Mon, May 1st 2017 5:03a   Rene Winkelmeyer
I cannot believe how fast my first year with Salesforce passed by. It was May 1st 2016 was when I joined Salesforce. Here are a few highlights that happened in that time: Speaking at numerous user groups and conferences in Europe and the US Created several open-source contributions to enhance the Salesforce Developer Experience Crafted content for the developer.salesforce.com blog Made the Trailhead Zone at Dreamforce 2016 accessible for vision-impaired people Created and run a kids coding a
7
Happy Birthday Albert Einstein – and Salesforce Einstein Vision!
Tue, Mar 14th 2017 3:57p   Rene Winkelmeyer
Today is Albert Einstein’s birthday – and we at Salesforce are GA’ing Einstein Vision. See our developer summary page here on the Salesforce Developer website. The site links to all needed documentation. There are also two fun trails on Trailhead: Getting Smart with Salesforce Einstein Predictive Vision Service If you want to explore Einstein Vision using Java or Swift… well, you don’t have to build it your own. Checkout my GitHub repos for the Swift and Jav
3
Chances are your next job will require Salesforce skills
Fri, Feb 10th 2017 11:29a   Rene Winkelmeyer
A new Burning Glass report showcases that the job market for people Salesforce skills grows 1.3times faster than the overall market. And that Salesforce skills are the 7th highest tech skill in demand (ahead of .Net or C++ i. e.). Read the summary on Medium. The full Burning Glass report can be accessed here. Want to learn Salesforce – go to Trailhead!
4
Meet me in Prague on Feb 16th if you want to hear about Lightning and SalesforceDX
Tue, Feb 7th 2017 9:55a   Rene Winkelmeyer
Next week I’m joining the Salesforce User & Developer Group in Prague for their February meetup to speak about Lightning and SalesforceDX. A hot topic for developers across all audiences is how get the most out of the available frameworks and technology in their day-to-day work. That includes, but is not limited to, having a great development experience in terms of tools and workflows. During the meetup we will address both needs by talking about Lightning and SalesforceDX.
4
Speaking at London’s Calling about Salesforce Einstein
Tue, Jan 3rd 2017 12:25p   Rene Winkelmeyer
I’m happy to announce that you can find me on February 10th at London’s Calling – Europe’s largest community led event for Salesforce professionals. The event will take at CodeNode (last year a badger has been seen there). I’ll speak about why, where and how to use the Predictive Vision service on the Salesforce Einstein platform. Do you have visions? Good – Einstein can help! Artificial Intelligence (AI) is one of the big buzzwords nowadays. It is an




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