Salesforce Testing: Developer Operations & Sandbox Seeding

An integral part of using Salesforce effectively involves customizing the Salesforce platform to match your specific business requirements. The customization process is done by Salesforce developers, architects, and administrators within Salesforce Sandboxes. But do these replicas of your Salesforce Production have the relevant data you need?

Typically, less expensive Salesforce sandboxes options come with a replica of Salesforce metadata, but no data.

This setup means that your development team can only perform limited validation of new configurations within these environments. This means that changes are made to production Salesforce without a full understanding of the impact that these changes can have on your business.

An alternative is to purchase a Salesforce full copy sandbox directly from Salesforce. However, these sandboxes are sold as a percentage of your total spend and may increase the cost of your Salesforce environment as much as 30% – just to get a complete replica of your Production environment.

Along with the high cost, another downside to a full copy sandbox is the inherant restrictions on the ability to refresh when needed. Full copy sandboxes can only refreshed every 29 days with a potential days long waiting period. This means that your testing environment is not a faithful replica of the current state of Salesforce production.

Fortunately, Capstorm has developed a streamlined Salesforce seeding solution. With our software, you can incrementally update a full copy Salesforce sandbox with fresh data, mask sensitive data fields, seed a Dev, DevPro, or Partial copy sandbox, and even populate Salesforce Scratch Orgs in minutes. We give you the power to make your data work for you.

The Shared Sandbox Dilemma

Continuous integration / continuous delivery processes require robust development and testing environments that contain faithful reproductions of production datasets and metadata. Shared Salesforce development environments cause situations where multiple developers will overwrite each others’ work, so it is considered a bad practice to encourage multiple developers to work in a single full copy Salesforce sandbox.

While the industry best practice is to ensure that each developer has their own development environment, this “one to one” sandbox best practice is rarely followed in the Salesforce ecosystem.

Salesforce provides multiple tiers of sandbox environments – at multiple tiers of pricing. Salesforce Full Copy sandboxes are typically used for final User Acceptance Testing and Quality Assurance Testing. Development is relegated to smaller and less costly DevPro, or Dev orgs. These lower environments can provide a complete replica of the production org’s metadata, but the lack of interrelated data in these lower environments makes them a challenge for development teams. The common solution is to resort to using the largest and most costly sandbox, having this full copy sandbox function as a place to perform daily development activities as well as final pre-prod validation.


Alternatively, DevPro or Dev environments can be populated by hand or via popular data loading tools, but this process is time consuming and can not be reliably scripted with any more than a handful of data relationships.

Making lower environments useful requires relevant production data – it’s hard to do development with no data! CapStorm specializes in populating Dev Pro Sandboxes, Developer Sandboxes, and even Scratch orgs with highly targeted Salesforce production data. These data sets are slices of Salesforce production data and can be tailored to specific development projects.

For example, a project related to Salesforce cases may require a selection of cases from a specific record type along with objects both lower and higher on the relationship hierarchy like Accounts, CaseComments, etc.

This selection process is also granular to account for the huge variety of data that is common in the enterprise Salesforce ecosystem such as filtering on multiple criteria or even pinpointing a single record and all of the records’ relationships (potentially thousands!).

Data can also be masked as needed, to anonymize sensitive production data types like emails, phone numbers, or other personal identifiers. CapStorm’s software enables over 600 businesses worldwide to seed Salesforce sandboxes with targeted data sets, maintaining record relationships and streamlining the Salesforce development process.

Test & Validate Work Through Sandboxes

Higher-end sandbox environments are poor places to perform Salesforce development!
Along with the environment cost, you risk overwritten code and lost productivity as developers do not have private places to test & validate!

CapStorm can help you save both time and money with our Salesforce sandbox seeding capabilities. Seeding is the process of putting a slice of your production data into a sandbox, with optional data anonymization to protect sensitive fields.

We enable your Salesforce teams to transform inexpensive Salesforce sandboxes into rich testing environments that you can use for Salesforce development, training, migration and ETL testing, or even Disaster Recovery Testing.

Our Salesforce sandbox seeding software also allows you to implement data masking, examine Salesforce metadata differences between environments, and incrementally add new data to sandboxes whenever you need.

Train Users on New Features in a Test Environment

While a core benefit of CapStorm’s Salesforce sandbox seeding solution is that it reduces costs while also saving time, you can also use our technology for training purposes.

Salesforce sandboxes are the perfect place to train new Salesforce users on your business processes or even train on new Salesforce features without giving these users full production access.

Salesforce sandbox training carries minimal risk because users are not interacting with live organizational data, which means that they will not inadvertently cause disruptions to your business.

Test and Operate Your Databases with Confidence

Intrigued by the prospect of expediting the Salesforce development process and improving data security? If so, then it is time to contact the experts in Salesforce sandbox seeding. Drop us a message and let us know how we can help with your Salesforce needs.
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