Salesforce Flow to replace Workflow Rules & Process Builders

Flow is the future of declarative automation on the Salesforce platform. According to Salesforce, as of the Winter ‘23 release you will no longer be able to create new Process Builders or Workflow Rules.

By the end of 2022, companies that run on the Salesforce platform will not be able to create new automations using Salesforce Workflow Rules and Process Builders. Existing automation may need to be migrated into Flow as well.

Strategic planning of foundational architecture for Flow will avoid technical debt and future issues. This planning will also help ensure migration initiatives can be completed more efficiently and with less risk of problems.

Why the change poses a challenge

The Salesforce Professional Services Team at Vicasso has identified three main areas where this platform change will challenge companies:

Short Timeline

If you haven't started planning how your organization will create new automation using Salesforce Flow, time is winding down. The Winter '23 release of Salesforce is less than 2 quarters away, and the older and more complex your Salesforce Org is, the more time will be needed to design a strategy and execute your plan. 

Flow is approaching the power of Apex, particularly with recent innovations. You need experienced resources ready to act, and you need them to address all of the areas below.

  • Flow Types, capabilities and functionality
  • Documentation of all Workflow Rules and Process Builders
  • Classification of Workflow Rules and Process Builders into Flow type (Record Triggered, Platform Event, Scheduled, etc.)
  • Build, test, and deploy Flows through change control processes

The items above are very time consuming, particularly if your Org is mature or heavily customized.

Ongoing Salesforce Projects Could Be Delayed

Significant platform changes like the emergence of Flow don’t come along too often. Strategic planning and the documentation, design, and delivery of Flow need to be prioritized ahead of this platform change. When you shift your focus to Flow, your Salesforce roadmap may be delayed in other areas. 

Bringing in the expertise and the additional bandwidth of a Salesforce Partner with experience in Flow will ensure your company can address all day-to-day and strategic priorities across the organization. 

Unknown Future Conditions

Flow is an evolving technology and that means more changes are coming. Ongoing development of component technologies like Flow Orchestrator will require continuous learning in the coming months and years.

Additionally, Salesforce has not confirmed a few key details about the future availability of cloning and saving new versions of Process Builder.

Vicasso Solution Architect, Rachel Garton, said the following about the availability of Process Builder edits: “I'm not optimistic because updating a Process Builder requires cloning [saves a new version behind the scenes] which may be blocked. Salesforce may push people to convert automation to Flow if/when edits must be made to Process Builders or Workflow Rules.”

Keeping track of iterative changes in Flow can be a full-time job itself, so it may make sense to lean on external expertise to keep business automation up to date unless your internal team has the capacity to grow their skill set in this area.

What should I do next?

Vicasso Salesforce experts Rachel Garton and Benjamin Bratcher presented “Salesforce Flows: Design Recommendations and Best Practices” to their highly attended session at Texas Dreamin’ 2022.

They shared tips, tricks, “gotchas”, best practice recommendations, limitations, and more. In addition to the official Salesforce resources, you can see their jam-packed slide deck below.

The main takeaway to consider: There is no silver bullet. Assess your org, make a plan and execute it. Document along the way.

Flow architecture isn’t something you can deliver ad hoc or as an afterthought. Planning and experienced input into your Flow architecture is critical business infrastructure and it’s time to take a close look at what’s next in Salesforce declarative automation.

Vicasso has a team of Salesforce Architects, Business Analyst, Solution Consultants, and Developers ready to help bring your Salesforce Org into the next phase of business technology.

Salesforce Resources

Salesforce Flows Design Recommendations & Best Practices

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