What are the Salesforce CPQ Implementation Challenges?

Published by Laura Ashley, July 20, 2017
Product, Salesforce, Thought Leadership

Salesforce CPQ is a popular CPQ solution. But for an application with so many large-scale implementations, why is Salesforce CPQ so new to test automation? Read on to learn the primary CPQ implementation challenges in testing and some examples of how Provar has solved these challenges.

What is Salesforce CPQ?

Salesforce CPQ (formerly Steelbrick) is a Configure-Price-Quote solution built on Salesforce Lightning. Salesforce CPQ streamlines configuration & ensures pricing & quoting accuracy, speeding opportunity, quoting, and proposals while removing errors from the workflow.

Salesforce CPQ Testing Approaches

Many organizations that use Salesforce CPQ don’t do any automated testing, preferring to test each release manually. At Provar, we encounter some CPQ implementation challenges and a variety of approaches. Some businesses are new to automation and others are familiar with traditional solutions and are looking for something more maintainable.

What’s interesting about Salesforce CPQ testing is there seem to be fewer organizations that already have automation in place. At Provar we’ve met many Salesforce CPQ customers who come to us without an existing solution, preferring to manually test each release. So what’s holding them back?

We’ve discovered three main testing challenges in our work on Salesforce CPQ testing.

Challenge #1: Salesforce CPQ Field Locators

In our product development, we’ve found that Salesforce CPQ testing is particularly difficult with traditional automation methods such as Selenium.

Salesforce CPQ pages make heavy use of Shadow DOM, which can currently only be accessed using CCS locators, not Field IDs or XPaths. The standards for doing this are still being agreed upon.

One thing is well known, however: CSS locators don’t allow you to match on text. This makes it especially difficult to locate certain Shadow DOM elements.

Provar Solution #1: Specialized CPQ locators

Provar has specialized CPQ locators which give reliable results, even on Shadow DOM pages. In Provar, the user just maps the field as usual using the Test Builder, and the Salesforce CPQ locator type will be offered automatically:

This helps to reduce user error and ensures a future-proof locator.

Challenge #2: Salesforce CPQ Tabs and Tables

Another complexity of Salesforce CPQ testing is when pages contain internal tabs which control the table and fields visible under the tab.

These can be difficult to control with Selenium because awareness of the ‘active tab’ is crucial. If the wrong tab is selected, the right fields won’t be found, leading to test failures.

Provar Solution #2: Inbuilt Tab and Table Mapping

Provar maps Salesforce CPQ tabs and tables automatically, removing the risk of error. When a field is mapped for the first time, Provar will create a new Page Object for the tab or table, if they are new, or it will add a field to an existing Page Object if the tab or table has been used before.

Tab switching is handled automatically, so no input from the user is needed when interacting with fields on a different tab.

The process for mapping tabs and tables in Salesforce CPQ testing is also very similar to the process for mapping standard Salesforce tabs and tables, for example in a Service Cloud Console. This makes it easy for new users to learn.

Challenge #3: Quote Line Editor Drawers

As of Salesforce CPQ 28.0, Quote Line Editor Drawers can be used in the quote line editor to better handle a large field set.

Certain fields can be placed in a collapsible drawer below each line item, accessible by clicking the arrow at the end of a quote line:

Much like tables and tabs, these can be difficult to handle because the arrow must be at the ‘expand’ setting in order to be able to access the fields underneath. This can lead to failures if the arrow is not correctly handled. That is why it is considered a CPQ implementation challenge by most businesses.

Provar Solution #3: Automatic Drawer Handling

In Provar, these drawers are handled automatically by Provar and do not need to be mapped by the user:

All that’s needed is mapping the field as usual, and Provar’s metadata integration will handle the arrow set. This reduces failures by ensuring the right field can always be found during the test.

Want to know more?

an image of Salesforce CPQ manual vs automation comparison

Splunk achieved an overall 75% reduction in test effort after 3 months by using Provar for their Salesforce CPQ testing solution. Click here to read the success story.

Get in touch to see a full demo of Provar’s Salesforce CPQ testing solution.

Further Reading

Visit our Salesforce CPQ testing help page for more information on how to use Provar’s Salesforce CPQ testing features.

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