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Integrations are integral when you want to take your Salesforce org to the next level. The integrations you use may be as simple as generating short links for SMS messages, or as complex as feeding live data between Salesforce and your accounting software or back-office data warehouse. If you’re a Salesforce developer, you’ve probably had to hard-code integrations over the years, leading to challenges in testing, deployment, and maintenance. If you’re a system administrator, you’ve probably had to deal with the annoyance of needing a developer to update code every time a simple endpoint changes. Many developers have learned these lessons the hard way and created custom settings to maintain integration settings, but this approach has its limitations. But have you heard of Named Credentials?

My team had favored the Custom Settings approach for quite a while, and when an incredible power user on Twitter built a bit.ly integration based on a question I posed to the #askforce community, I was introduced to the new Named Credentials tool released in Winter ‘16. Readymade out of the box, this cool tool is built with integrations in mind. They’re easier to set up and reference in Apex than Custom Settings, and maintenance is a breeze, allowing you to change endpoints without ever touching the code. Create a Named Credential by going to Setup -> Security Controls -> Named Credential. If you want to see how easy it is to incorporate into your code, check out the bit.ly integration above and Salesforce’s user guide. Admins and Developers alike, I know you’ll love this!

-Jared and the Salesforce Guys
Cover image by Joelle Diane