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How to Become a Salesforce Developer

Salesforce is a cloud-based customer relationship management (CRM) platform that offers a synchronized approach to businesses for managing marketing, sales, customer service, and IT services.

Professionals who design and manage Salesforce applications are called Salesforce developers. The key to figuring out how to become a Salesforce developer is knowing which skills to learn. You need to have a firm grasp of programming languages and be a capable communicator concerning general business topics.

What Is a Salesforce Developer?

Salesforce developers write code and design the user interfaces of Salesforce apps to maximize user interaction and improve customer relationships.

The Salesforce platform provides businesses with the opportunity to synchronize the efforts of their marketing, sales, commerce, service, and IT teams by ensuring they have access to marketing analytics tools and business operation technologies.

Salesforce Developer Job Description

Salesforce developers use their programming skills to write code that ensures the efficiency and reliability of the Salesforce system and servers. They design the visual user interface of the integrated platform to promote ease of use and scalability.

Salesforce developers typically use three major technologies. These are Apex, a proprietary programming language, Visualforce, a markup language, and Lightning Component Framework, a UI framework. These technologies are used to design CRM applications and integrate other systems.

Salesforce Developer Salary and Job Outlook

Salesforce developers generally come from a software engineering background. The US Bureau of Labor Statistics placed the 2020 median salary for entry-level software developers, quality assurance analysts, and testers at $110,140. The field is expected to add 409,500 jobs between 2020 and 2030, representing 22 percent growth.

According to ZipRecruiter, the average annual salary for Salesforce developers is $115,403. ZipRecruiter also reports that the three most lucrative locations for Salesforce developer positions are New York City, Boston, and Silicon Valley.

Top Reasons to Become a Salesforce Developer in 2021

There are several reasons why working as a Salesforce developer is a wonderful idea, and below we share our top picks with you.

  • You get to work with an engaging platform. The Salesforce system is highly interactive. Optimizing user interfaces to boost users' experience can be fun and challenging work.
  • You’re directly contributing to economic development. By developing enterprise software solutions, you’re facilitating business and increasing economic activity in your country.
  • It is one of the most lucrative career paths. Salesforce developers earn high salaries because there is a high demand for cloud professionals in the job market.
  • It exposes you to cutting-edge technology. The Salesforce system is constantly being upgraded and the technologies used to maintain it are constantly evolving.

Salesforce Developer Job Requirements

Being a Salesforce developer demands expertise in the areas listed below.

  • Proficiency in computer programming. To work with Salesforce programming languages, you should be skilled in using popular object oriented programming languages like Java, JavaScript, and HTML.
  • Knowledge of cloud-based technologies. A software developer familiar with other cloud-based platforms like Google Cloud, Microsoft Cloud, and Amazon Web services (AWS) will find working with the Salesforce Cloud easier.
  • Ability to collaborate with other operations teams. To satisfy customer needs, you need to be a team player, working with fellow developers on other teams to define business objectives and implement strategies.
  • Knowledge of Business Processes. A broad understanding of critical aspects of business management will enable you to anticipate customer needs and design better user interfaces.

Types of Salesforce Developer Careers

There are several career pathways available to Salesforce professionals. Apart from being a Salesforce developer, you can choose any of the other careers listed below.

Salesforce Architect

These professionals review and manage different design features in Salesforce applications. They design Salesforce systems and ensure features work seamlessly when scaling. They also maintain Salesforce cloud systems and servers.

Salesforce Administrator

Salesforce administrators train users in the fundamentals of Salesforce and file reports. One of their tasks is automating complicated business processes.

Salesforce Consultant

Salesforce consultants work with clients to ensure their needs are being met. The Salesforce consultant also advises the operations teams on how to improve client experience and fix bugs.

Salesforce Developer Meaning: What Does a Salesforce Developer Do?

Salesforce developers are constantly optimizing users’ experience by developing and modifying services to meet their needs. This can be done by employing some of the following techniques.

Web Services Development

Salesforce developers facilitate Salesforce CRM web services like web templates, XML interfaces for network services, web conversion languages, and APIs.

Application Lifecycle Management

Salesforce developers manage the framework, tools, and processes that ensure optimal functionality of Salesforce system applications, from the development stage to the maintenance stage.

System Integration

Salesforce developers coordinate the different components in the Salesforce cloud to provide a wholesome experience to the user.

Essential Salesforce Developer Skills

Specific skills distinguish Salesforce developers from others. Every developer should possess these skills and be able to use them interchangeably as the job demands.

Programming Skills

Salesforce CRM is based on a distinct set of programming languages and technologies. The Salesforce developers should have experience working with these Salesforce's proprietary programming model.

Communication Skills

Effectively communicating the business requirements to other team members is an asset every Salesforce developer should possess. You should also know something about Agile project management and be able to implement and follow effective project plans.

Problem-Solving Skills

Salesforce developers should have analytical skills. The Salesforce developer should be skilled at troubleshooting, identifying, and resolving malfunctions before they become a major issue.

How Long Does It Take to Become a Salesforce Developer?

Salesforce development bootcamps typically last for 12 to 24 weeks, depending on the program. Part-time students spend up to 24 weeks mastering the craft, while full-time students spend only 12 weeks completing the curriculum.

Some bootcamps offer even shorter programs. For instance, Salesforce’s own Trailhead Virtual Bootcamp usually spans 30 days.

Can a Coding Bootcamp Help Me Become a Salesforce Developer?

Yes, it can. Software development requires coding skills. This is what coding bootcamps offer. By enrolling in a coding bootcamp, you can learn the object-oriented programming languages and full stack technologies that can help you excel as a Salesforce developer.

A few bootcamps are dedicated to helping students master Salesforce technologies and the Salesforce platform. To boost your familiarity, these bootcamps will ensure you work on a real-time project using the Lightning Component Framework, Apex, and Visualforce.

Can I Become a Salesforce Developer from Home?

Yes, you can. There are remote Salesforce developer jobs available. Most bootcamps offer online courses for students, so you can train to become a Salesforce developer from home as well.

How to Become a Salesforce Developer: A Step-by-Step Guide

If you decide to pursue a career as a Salesforce developer, below is a step-by-step guide that you can use to get you through it all.

Step 1: Enroll in a Coding Bootcamp or Alternative Program

The first step to becoming a Salesforce developer is gaining the required skills. The best place to do this is through an immersive coding bootcamp that will prepare you for the competitive tech industry.

Step 2: Secure Industry Experience

Most bootcamps will help you secure jobs after graduation. A job as a Salesforce professional will do wonders for your career. You'll work with innovative technologies and cutting-edge development tools alongside experts.

Step 3: Build Expertise with Professional Certification

Specializing in this field could mean you need to gain more certifications to stand out to employers. There are a couple of Salesforce professional certifications to get you started, which we will look at later in the article.

Best Schools and Education for a Salesforce Developer Career

If you're interested in a Salesforce development career and you don't know how to get started, we've got you covered. There are a couple of ways to go about becoming a Salesforce developer. We list them below.

Salesforce Developer Bootcamps

One option is attending a Salesforce bootcamp such as Trailhead or CRMBase. There are also online training courses on OpenClassrooms, which partners with Salesforce to provide an intensive and flexible 12-month training program for candidates who wish to pursue a Salesforce development career.

If you want to be exposed to a wider range of career options, you can enroll in any of the best coding bootcamps and specialize in Salesforce development later on.

Vocational School

An alternative program to bootcamps is vocational schools. Select Institute of Technology, for example, offers an in-depth Salesforce developer program that covers topics like basic Salesforce administration, Salesforce Platform development tools, and Apex fundamentals.

Community College

Salesforce offers a cloud training program to community colleges such as Dallas College, Ivy Tech Community College, Northern Virginia Community College, and Santa Fe College. Other community colleges that offer programs in Salesforce include Montgomery College, Santa Monica College, and Austin Community College.

Apart from these community colleges, PepUpTech, a non-profit organization, collaborates with colleges, universities, and community organizations to offer Salesforce developer training to underrepresented students in tech, helping them build successful Salesforce Development careers.

Salesforce Developer Degrees

There are no college degree programs specific to Salesforce. However, some universities like the University of San Francisco offer a Salesforce Academic Alliance Program in collaboration with Salesforce. You can also start a Salesforce career by completing a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science, Software Engineering, or Business Administration.

The Most Important Salesforce Developer Certifications

To specialize in Salesforce development, there are a couple of professional certifications you should acquire. We have compiled a list to get you started.

Salesforce Certified Platform Developer I

This Salesforce certification is for beginners, and there’s a practice examination course for interested students. It covers Salesforce fundamentals, data modeling and management, process automation and logic, and interactive user interfaces. It also provides the opportunity for students to take multiple practice examinations.

Salesforce Certified Platform Developer II

This is an advanced certification in Salesforce development. You should have completed the Certified Platform Developer I and built some developer experience to qualify. The examination tests your programmatic and data modeling abilities on the Salesforce platform.

How to Prepare for Your Salesforce Developer Job Interview

Typically a Salesforce development interview will explore general and technical ability as an employee and as a Salesforce professional. We have compiled a list of questions to give you a head start on preparing for your technical interview.

Salesforce Developer Job Interview Practice Questions

  • Can you distinguish between a SOQL and a SOSL?
  • What is a custom object in Salesforce terminology?
  • What is an Apex transaction?
  • Can you distinguish between a profile and a role in Salesforce?

Should I Become a Salesforce Developer in 2021?

Yes, you should. Salesforce developers enjoy high compensation, benefits, and job security. You can easily climb the career ladder or branch out into other related career paths. The skills you gain as a Salesforce developer may even open a door to freelancing. Professional developers with Salesforce skills are in demand, so the job opportunities are endless.


Can You Become a Salesforce Developer Without a Degree?
Yes, you can. Salesforce development is a modern and in-demand skill that can be easily acquired without a college degree. As long as you have your high school diploma and are willing to take certification exams, you can begin your career in tech.
Is It Hard to Become a Salesforce Developer?
No, it's not. The learning experience is really fun. The training environment is very interactive, so it doesn't feel overwhelming to learn the technical skills required to succeed. You get to collaborate with other software development students to create custom applications built on the cloud.
Is Salesforce Development a Good Career?
Yes, it is. This is a wonderful career for many reasons, including its flexibility. You can choose to work from anywhere or switch careers at will. Job security in this field is also an attraction. This is a role that has a lot of career opportunities and isn't becoming obsolete anytime soon.
Can I Earn a High Salary with a Salesforce Development Certification?
Yes, you can. According to the recent data from ZipRecruiter, the average salary for entry-level Salesforce developers is $85,069. This competitive salary is just one of the advantages of a Salesforce developer certification. Achieving your career aspirations has never been easier.
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