London Salesforce Developer Meetup – Jan 2017 Review

The London Salesforce Developer User Group kicked off the new year with another lightning talk based event. This one was fielded by the graduates of the latest Speaker Diversity Programme. The speakers at the event were the second batch of graduates to pass through the course, and one lucky winner would gain a speaker slot at the upcoming London’s Calling community Salesforce event.


The Speaker Diversity Programme – brainchild of the DUG organisers Jodi Wagner and Keir Bowden – was set up to act as a step up for new speakers into the Salesforce user group circuit (and hopefully further afield).

The group met in Salesforce Tower, on one of the new floors recently occupied by Salesforce… the view just gets better every time I visit.

And onto the talks… well actually a little preface; I’m going to try to not going into too much detail here, as videos of all talks are available on the DUG YouTube channel, thanks to MobileCaddy.

The Talks

Process Builder Tricks – Claire Jones

Kicking off the evening was Claire, she talked us through one of her favourite admin tricks; using process builder and filtered lists to show just relevant information to users. She showed us the steps needed to enable this, and also how you’d need to use a slightly different approach if you’re using Lightning Experience.

How to Create Lightning Bolt Templates – Stas Dunayev

Lightning Bolt Community Theming was the next topic, covered by Stas. He walked us through the pre-Lightning Bolt options of cookie-cutter looking community sites. He showed us the composition of Bolt themes, and how each piece, and the theme as a whole are all Lightning Components.

Stas covered the ability to create custom page layouts, and packaging of themes for distribution and use. I’ve personally not had any experience with community themes, but I can see a real market for premium, well executed themes in the AppExchange.

Break The Rules – Julia Doctoroff

What a great title for a talk, and Julia did a great job of delivering on its promise. She walked us through the a mechanism of disabling validation rules via custom settings. The talk takes us through a real life case of needing to perform such a task, the implementation, and the human case of realising something’s not right and then fixing it.

Salesforce life balance – Sankaran Napoleon

I’ve met San at several previous meets, and if someone had asked me to guess what he might be talking about then I think I’d have been pretty close. Sankaran always appears happy, never stressed in the least. So maybe he’s onto something (even if at points it does seem like Benioff himself had commissioned the slide deck).

Developer’s Intro to Lightning – Chris Bacon

I’m not sure how many devs are really using Lightning in the wild, but Chris is certainly among that (quite possibly small) number. His talk guided us through an (all too brief) intro to Lightning Components from a developer’s stance. His overview covered a basic example and demo, and for some in the room it was a real delight to see some code.

If you’re interested in getting into Lightning development then I highly recommend watching this one as well as taking the excellent Trailhead Module.

The Path from Dev to Consultant – Alejandra Sivori

As someone who’s taken the jump (leap?) from Salesforce Developer to Consultant Alejandra gave us a talk on a set of soft skills that she developed during the transition and how they affected her and her team’s results. Alejandra mentioned some advice on how to improve in these areas, and also some of the pitfalls to be aware of.

And the Winner is…

As I mentioned, one of the wonderful graduates was going to get a speaker slot, alongside myself, at London’s Calling 2017. The audience were asked to blind vote for their favourite talk, and the lucky winner is Chris Bacon. Within Chris’ talk there is mention of using browser developers tools to aid your Lightning Development process, so if you’re lucky enough to be attending London’s Calling (tickets have now sold out), then be sure to catch me talking about browser dev tools at 3:15 in the Ctrl room.