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Demonstrate your knowledge on designing and building custom applications declaratively using the Salesforce Platform.
The Salesforce Platform App Builder certification is ideal for Salesforce professionals that want to demonstrate their knowledge building custom applications on the Salesforce platform. This exam really focuses down on on using tools such as Custom Objects & Fields, Process Builder, Approval Processes, and all other declarative features. These are defined by the features that are built by clicks, and not code.
Who's the Ideal Candidate?
I would recommend any Salesforce professional to take this certification, no matter if you are an Admin, Consultant, or Developer, the skills you pick up while revising for this exam will become invaluable to anyone working on the platforms.
One of the most powerful aspects about Salesforce, is the ability to create custom application and processes in rapid time, and this exam covers it all.
1. Business Logic & Process Automation 27%
This chunky section takes up over a quarter of the entire exam, so you better get familiar with all the concepts! In fact, this section will test your knowledge of Record Types, Formula Fields, Rollup Summary Fields, Validation Rules, Approval Processes, Workflow, Flow & Process Builder.
The exam mostly contains scenario based questions, and therefore given a certain scenario, you will be expected to put forward the most appropriate solution. All of the features mentioned above are so core to the platform, it’s very appropriate that you learn these inside out. In fact, in the exam and on the job, you will most likely be using these features in combination, so have a good play around with them in a sandbox.
2. Data Modeling & Management 20%
This section is all about the Salesforce data model, think standard & custom objects, fields, as well as the relationships between these in the form of lookups & master-detail relationships. When presented with a business requirement, the data schema that is set up is so crucial to the project that it’s good to learn all aspects of data modeling early.
You will need to understand record access implications of the schema, user interface, as well as reporting. In addition you will need to understand field types in detail, and which one is most appropriate, given a scenario.
You will almost definitely be asked a question based around updating one field to another field type and the data loss that could incur (or not), so memorise and test these combinations out for a guaranteed mark!
3. User Interface 14%
As well as diving into the technical point and click aspect of the Salesforce platform, you also should understand the features available to give users a nice experience. With most Salesforce users now on Lightning, this opens up huge possibilities to create slick user interfaces.
You will be expected to understand how Lightning Components can be used, and where they can be placed (Pretty much anywhere now!), as well as the difference between standard, custom, and App components. You will also be tested on how custom buttons, links, and actions can play a part in making users lives easier.
You will be tested in a similar fashion to the above sections, through scenarios to determine the most appropriate solution.
The Platform App Builder Certification has a lot of content. As opposed to some of the other certifications where they take a real deep dive into fewer standard Salesforce functionality, here you are expected to know about a lot. However, before being put off, I actually find this an easier cert to revise for. As once you have learned how each feature works, solutionizing in your head based on a scenario becomes far easier.
I would recommend learning about each individual feature first on Trailhead and by doing a bit of revision through the Salesforce support documentation. Once learned, now is the time to really test these features together in a developer Org. One of the best tactics to revise is to create a fake business for yourself such as an eCommerce store, or a Gym. Create requirements for yourself based on the business model and use the features in this exam to create yourself slick process automation!
When exam day finally hits, there are a bunch of tips we gathered over the years to give you the best chance of passing with flying colours.
Firstly, if there are any concepts that you are struggling to get to grips with, then print off a cheat sheet and try and memorize any of these before you take the exam so they are fresh in your memory.
When taking the exam, pay particular attention to the question, and read it through a few times. For the scenario-based questions there will be huge clues in the answer to what the correct answer actually is. If you need to, use the pen and paper provided to draw out a data schema, role hierarchy or any other diagram that will help you visualize the answer.
When deciding on the answer, be sure to use the process of elimination to get rid of the answers that are definitely incorrect. Salesforce likes to throw in answers that are made up of features or just plane incorrect. They also like to throw in curveballs, of features that appear to be correct but aren’t best practice. You can often worm out these by focussing on standard Salesforce features that accomplish a task. For example, you could build a custom approval process with process builder, but why do this when there is a standard feature that is best practice?
You also have a great tool at your disposal, the “Mark for review” feature. On each question, you will have a checkbox that you can mark. This is great if you cannot think of an answer right at that moment, or if you are doubtful about your answer. At the end of the exam, you will have a chance to review these questions. Depending on the amount selected, this will give you a pretty good idea of how likely you are to have passed the test. Regardless of the questions marked for review, I would always recommend to go through every question if time permits. I do this on every exam, and often spot mistakes I made in the answers and change a few.
In my opinion, the Platform App Builder qualification is almost as core as the Salesforce Admin exam.
These declarative features allow Admins to build powerful apps with automation, with no code what so ever. This is one of the biggest unique selling points of the platform, and all professionals should be taking advantage of them.
Most employers know this as well, and will be looking for professionals that know how to maintain and extend the platform.