Tackling Technical Debt in Salesforce: Key Considerations for CIOs and Technical Architects

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Tackling Technical Debt in Salesforce: Key Considerations for CIOs and Technical Architects

Posted by Shiv Devinarayanan

minutes read

Salesforce is an incredibly powerful platform, but like any complex system, it can accumulate technical debt over time. In this blog post, we’ll discuss the importance of addressing technical debt in Salesforce, outline the considerations for technical architects and developers, and provide actionable steps for managing and reducing technical debt.

Why CIOs Should Prioritize Solving Salesforce Technical Debt?

Technical debt in Salesforce can lead to a variety of issues, such as reduced system performance, increased maintenance costs, and decreased agility in responding to business needs. By proactively addressing technical debt, CIOs can unlock the following benefits:

  • Improved system performance
  • Reduced maintenance costs
  • Increased ability to adapt to changing business requirements
  • Enhanced user experience and adoption
  • Higher ROI on Salesforce investments

Considerations When Solving Technical Debt in Salesforce

Understand Your Salesforce Environment

The first step to addressing technical debt is to thoroughly understand your Salesforce environment. This includes:

  • Analyzing your org’s metadata, including objects, fields, and Apex code.
  • Reviewing integrations with other systems
  • Identifying areas of customization and potential improvements.

Establish Clear Goals and Priorities

Before embarking on a technical debt reduction project, it’s essential to establish clear goals and priorities. This may include:

  • Identifying critical business processes that need optimization.
  • Prioritizing areas with the highest impact on system performance or user experience.
  • Aligning with the organization’s strategic objectives and business requirements.

Assess the Scope and Complexity of Technical Debt

It’s important to evaluate the scope and complexity of the technical debt in your Salesforce org. This may involve:

  • Evaluating the number of customizations, unused features, or redundant configurations.
  • Assessing the complexity of your Apex code and triggers.
  • Identifying outdated integrations or deprecated features.

Structuring the Project to Tackle Technical Debt in Salesforce

Assemble a Cross-Functional Team

A successful technical debt reduction project requires collaboration between various stakeholders, including:

  • Technical architects and developers
  • Business analysts and process owners
  • Salesforce administrators and end-users

Develop a Roadmap and Timeline

Create a detailed project roadmap and timeline that includes:

  • The prioritized list of technical debt items to be addressed
  • The estimated effort and resources required for each task
  • The timeline for completing each phase of the project

Implement a Governance Framework

To ensure long-term success in managing technical debt, establish a governance framework that includes:

  • Clear roles and responsibilities for maintaining Salesforce org health.
  • Regular reviews and audits of customizations, integrations, and code quality
  • Guidelines and best practices for future development and configuration work

Steps for Architects and Developers to Solve Technical Debt

Refactor and Optimize Code

Identify opportunities to refactor and optimize Apex code, such as:

  • Eliminating duplicate or unused code
  • Implementing best practices for error handling and logging
  • Consolidating triggers and streamlining logic

Simplify and Streamline Configurations

Review and streamline Salesforce configurations, including:

  • Removing unused fields, objects, and customizations
  • Consolidating similar workflows or processes
  • Optimizing validation rules and formula fields

Upgrade and Modernize Integrations

Upgrade and modernize any outdated or deprecated integrations, ensuring they are:

  • Compatible with the latest Salesforce APIs and standards
  • Optimized for performance and maintainability
  • Aligned with your organization’s data and integration strategy


Solving technical debt in Salesforce is a critical undertaking for CIOs, technical architects, and developers. By considering the key aspects outlined in this blog post, organizations can effectively reduce their technical debt, unlock business value, and maximize their Salesforce investments. Start tackling your Salesforce technical debt today and reap the rewards of a more efficient, streamlined, and agile Salesforce environment.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Technical debt in Salesforce refers to the accumulated issues, inefficiencies, and suboptimal configurations or customizations within a Salesforce org that can impact system performance, maintainability, and adaptability to changing business requirements. It may arise from rushed development, a lack of best practices, outdated features, or redundant customizations.</p<

To identify technical debt in your Salesforce org, perform a thorough analysis of your org’s metadata, review integrations with other systems, and evaluate areas of customization. You may also consider conducting regular org health checks, utilizing Salesforce’s Org Health Check tool, or engaging a Salesforce partner to assess your org’s health.

While it may be challenging to eliminate technical debt completely, it can be significantly reduced. By following best practices, implementing a strong governance framework, and addressing technical debt proactively, you can minimize its impact on your Salesforce org and maximize the benefits of your investment.

To prioritize technical debt items, consider the following factors:

  • Impact on system performance and user experience
  • Alignment with your organization’s strategic objectives and business requirements
  • Complexity and effort required to resolve the issue
  • Dependencies on other items or projects within your Salesforce org

By prioritizing high-impact items that align with your organization’s goals, you can maximize the value of your technical debt reduction efforts.

The frequency of reviewing and addressing technical debt will depend on your organization’s size, complexity, and rate of change. However, it is generally recommended to perform regular org health checks (at least once or twice a year) and address high-priority technical debt items as they arise. Implementing a strong governance framework will also help to ensure ongoing monitoring and management of technical debt.

To minimize future technical debt accumulation, follow these best practices:

  • Establish and adhere to development and configuration standards
  • Implement a robust governance framework with clear roles and responsibilities
  • Provide ongoing training and support for developers, administrators, and end-users
  • Conduct regular reviews and audits of your Salesforce org to identify and address potential issues early on

By proactively managing your Salesforce org and adhering to best practices, you can reduce the likelihood of future technical debt accumulation and maintain a healthy, efficient, and agile Salesforce environment.

Yes, involving business users in the process of addressing technical debt is crucial for several reasons:

  • Business users can provide valuable insights into the impact of technical debt on their day-to-day operations and help prioritize items to be addressed.
  • Involving business users promotes a better understanding of the Salesforce platform’s capabilities and encourages adoption of best practices.
  • Engaging business users ensures that the changes made to address technical debt align with the organization’s strategic objectives and actual business needs.

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