The Magic of Components with Michael Gonzalez

May 18, 2017 mikegerholdt

Today on the Salesforce Admins Podcast we’re speaking with Michael Gonzalez, a Director of Product Management at Salesforce working on App Builder. Michael is an expert in how App Builder is changing the way Admins can customize their pages and user experience.

Join us to hear about the Lightning App Builder, the magic of Components, and what improvements are coming up in the Summer ‘17 release. We talk about how the App Builder team continues to make tweaks to give Admins more powerful tools, and more flexibility.

You should subscribe for the full episode, but here are a few takeaways from our conversation with Michael Gonzalez.

The Magic of Components

Michael fell into the tech industry. Out of college, he went into the family retail business. But then he got bit by the tech bug and moved from marketing into building products. This kind of journey is perfect for working on App Builder because he’s also the target audience, which gives him a passion for components.

“Components are magic,” Michael says, “they’re the building blocks of all of our pages that end users are going to see.” You can kick off processes through them, and they give Admins a lot of control: you can rearrange the layout of the page, update the properties, and more.

Michael’s favorite standard component is Path. With the ability to add it to custom objects, “it’s a great way to visualize the life cycle of a particular process,” and it keeps getting better from release to release.

The Future is Lightning

If you’re a longtime Admin who is concerned that all of the time you’ve invested in Record Types and Page Layouts will get thrown out in the move to Lightning, Michael thinks you’ll be pleasantly surprised.

Everything will render and look great, but beyond that a new feature in the Spring Release allows you to create custom pages and assign them to specific Record Types and Profiles. As Michael says, “if you’ve pre-created a lot in classic, this gives you another layer to leverage the work that you’ve done to be able to build tailored experiences.”

The Powers of the Lightning App Builder

Right off the bat, the great thing about App Builder in Lightning is that it’s a WYSIWYG tool. “When you open up a page you see real data in there. It takes all the guesswork out of knowing exactly what your end user sees as you go through and you customize it.” This helps you keep focused on what will work best, and not whether it will work at all.

In addition to that, you have a library of Components: Standard Components, Custom Components that a developer would build for your org, and custom managed ones that come directly from the App Exchange. Once you’re familiar with those two things, you can jump right in and start dragging and dropping.

It’s easy to make adjustments through the Component Properties feature. You can edit details, update properties, and see how they change in real time. As Michael puts it, “you know exactly how your page is changing as you’re going through and modifying it.”

Looking Forward to the Summer ‘17 Release

Coming through the pipeline is a pilot feature in the Summer ‘17 Release, which allows you to control the visibility of a Component on a page. Instead of going through and recreating different custom Lightning pages by Record Type and by Profile, you can just control the visibility of an individual Component.

“Having a dynamic page control is something that our customers and users have been asking for quite awhile,” and something that Michael is excited to deliver. If you’re interested in experimenting, reach out to your account teams to get ahold of it.

For more insights, make sure to follow Michael in the Salesforce Success Community.

We want to get your suggestions for guests on the podcast, and we need your help! So tweet your guest suggestions, support, etc. to @SalesforceAdmns to help us get more Awesome Admins on the podcast.

We want to remind you that if you love what you hear, or even if you don’t head on over to iTunes and give us a review. It’s super easy to do, and it helps more Admins find the podcast. Plus, we would really appreciate it.

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