Summer ‘21 pre-release orgs are live, so it’s time for a preview party! We’re gifted with some wonderful improvements to the platform we love. The exciting period of time where the changes are released in preview orgs (link not live yet!) is about to kick off and we will be able to explore features before they’re pushed to Production, and play freely without any impact to our business operations. This is the ideal time to learn how we can harness these new powers to our advantage when they are released (full details here).
As usual, there should be a unique Trailhead Treasure Hunter badge that you can earn by posting about treasures you discover! You’ll need to post your treasure as a comment on this post in the Trailblazer Community (link not live yet! ETA April 15th). Don’t forget the hashtag #Summer21Treasure when you post on the Trailblazer Community.
Even though we are only a few days in, I have already made Summer ’21 discoveries that are sure to blow your mind! Here are my top personal favourites discovered so far:
1. Configure Fields on Flow Screens
The new Sections Component launched in Spring ‘21, making it easier to build Screens with multiple columns. This new component was available within the ‘Components’ panel on the left (as has every new Screen Component since the dawn of Flow Builder, a few years back).
Salesforce have introduced an entirely new panel called ‘Fields (Beta)’ in Summer ‘21, to encapsulate an incredible new functionality: to add predefined fields from existing Objects without having to build them from scratch on each and every screen.
It’s worth noting that you’ll still need to use a Create or Update element to push values from these fields back into the Salesforce database, as they still only sit at the client side.
2. Collection Sort Element
When I’m asked why I obsess over Flow above any other Salesforce feature, it’s always features and advancements like this one. No matter how great and flexible Apex is, the learning curve for newbies is massive. Flow flattens that curve significantly.
The new Collection Sort element provides functionality to Flows that was previously exclusive to Apex users.
The Collection Sort element allows for a collection to be sorted in ascending or descending order, and offers the ability to keep on the first x number of items.
In the example below, I’ve got a Collection of Text Variables (or, a List of Strings in Apex terminology) that I want sorted alphabetically, and I’ve decided to only keep the first 5. I’ve also elected to push the nulls and empty values to the top of the order.
3. Debug Record Triggered Flows
As you’ll see in the next few points, Salesforce has dedicated some time and attention to Record Triggered Flows. One of those changes is the ability to debug Record Triggered Flows (cue Rihanna: “Where have you been all my life” 🎤)
Until now, the only way to test a Record Triggered Flow was to…well… trigger it by creating or updating a record. Not ideal!
Now in Summer ‘21, you can simply use the Debug tool (like you do with other Flow types), and you even have the option to skip the start condition requirements (ie. only run if Opportunity is Won). This change means a uniform debugging experience, and a much easier Record Triggered Flow testing experience!
4. Record Triggered Flows Support IsChanged
When it rains, it pours! 🌧
Record Triggered Flows also support the ‘IsChanged’ operator, giving you the ability to restrict certain actions to only occur when the value in the criteria is changed, for example, field values such as ‘Status’, ‘Stage’. Super helpful!
5. Governor Limits in Debugs
Yet another boost for Record Triggered Flows! When you’re debugging a Record Triggered Flow, you now have the option to show and hide details on your Governor Usage limit per transaction, or the Transaction Boundaries. It’s as simple as checking the boxes in the Debug pane.
6. Quick Actions Supports Lightning Web Components
Not only are the legacy Lightning Components supported as Quick Actions, but now you can configure Lightning Web Components too. This means all the functionality of LWCs are now accessible through an Action!
Bonus! Flow UI Changes and New Standard Font
There are some new blues being used inside the Flow Builder in this release – jump in and compare Summer ‘21 with the older Spring ‘21 UI (my graphic design studies are finally paying off!)
This may also be a subtle one – the system font is different! It was the first one that I noticed when I loaded my Preview Org – the beloved Salesforce Sans that we’ve grown accustomed to over the years has been replaced with a cleaner font, in my opinion.
Note that I’m using the latest Safari browser in macOS 11.2.3 with the system’s Dark Mode enabled at the time of writing this, as it may be impacted by different systems/browsers/themes.
Before (Spring ‘21):
After (Summer ‘21):
There you have it! Those are my favourite features that have been uncovered so far. There’s still quite a bit to explore, and soon we’ll have access to the Release Notes as well.
Sign up to a pre-release org yourself on April 15th and see what you can find.