The Salesforce Developer Certification is the certification that demonstrates that you are able to declaratively customize the standard applications or build a totally custom application.
‘Declaratively’ is a term that Salesforce uses to distinguish between building application using ‘point and click’ and ‘programmatic’ meaning using visualforce and apex coding.
The developer certification does not require detailed knowledge and skills of programming, but it does require knowing when it is appopriate or necessary to use coding to achieve an objective. Once you have achieved this certification, you will be a Certified Force.com Developer.
This certification is made up of 60 multiple choice qustions with 90 minutes to complete the exam, and has a 60% passing score. It can be taken at a testing centre or at an online proctored environment. The cost to register is USD $200. There are no prerequisties to taking this certification. It is a prerequisite to taking the Advanced Developer certification. Prepare yourself for the exam by taking the Salesforce Developer Practice Exams
1. Application Design (5%)
The Application Design section makes up only 5% of the total questions, so you could expect around 3 questions on this topic. As well as understanding application components, such as custom objects, custom fields and workflow rules, you should also be familiar with the model-view-controller design paradigm. In Salesforce, this basically means the separation of the different components of an application into the user interface (e.g. page layouts, visual force pages), controllers (where you define business logic) and model (defining the data model).
2. Overview of Force.com Platform (5%)
The Force.com Platform overview section is also only 5% of the total questions, so again only expect around 3 questions on this topic. You should be familiar with the steps required to declaratively build an application including defining custom objects, page layouts, business logic (e.g. workflow rules, validation rules), page layouts, list views and tabs. Once done with the application, you need to be familiar with how to deploy the changes into another environment.
3. Data Model (32%)
The Data Model section is the largest section and here is where you need to spend the most time preparing and ensuring you have a complete grasp on the how data models are configured in Salesforce. This involves understanding the different types of relationships that can be created between objects e.g. master-detail, many-to-many and lookups. Know the appropriate type of relationships for different scenarios and the differences between them.
4. User Interace (15%)
As the name suggests, this section covers all of the Salesforce user interface components. Know what the components are and how they are used (e.g. applications, tabs, list views, page layouts, search layouts, home page components, detail pages). It is also important to understand the limitation of the user interface components and when a visualforce page would be required to overcome a constraint of the standard page layout functionality. Also be familar with the capabilities of force.com sites as an optional user interface component for enabling external access to Salesforce data.
5. Business Logic (23%)
The Business Logic section is the second largest, so know it well as you could expect around 15 questions. It covers all of the standard functionality for enabling business logic in Salesforce, such as validation rules, workflow rules, formula and approval processes. Sometimes it will not be possible to cover the business logic requirments with the standard tools, so you must know when it is appropriate to use code.
6. Data Management (10%)
The Data Management section requires you to have a good knowledge of how Data Loader works, including when and how to use External Ids, when to use the GUI vs the CLI (command line interface) and have an understanding of the force.com record ids. The import wizard and API based tools that are used for managing data are also included.
7. Reporting and Analytics (10%)
The last section covers reporting and analytics. Know the different types and constraints of building reports and analytics.