For Salesforce developers Apex is almost like their second language; they know this type of programming language inside out. But what exactly is Apex and when do you use Apex?
What is Apex?
Salesforce defines Apex as:
“Apex is a strongly typed, object-oriented programing language that allows developers to execute flow and transaction control statements on Salesforce servers in conjunction with calls to the API. “
A strongly typed, object-oriented programming language means that Apex has strict typing rules, where developers define the data type of a data structure.
Flow and transaction control statements are used to determine the next statement to execute (flow) and to manage transactions in the database on Salesforce servers.
An API is whenever software components are communicating with each other. An API call is whenever you make a call to a server using APIs. For example, when you login, you are making an API call.
Simply put, Apex is a type of programming language specifically designed for Salesforce functionalities. It is created to work with and for Salesforce’s servers and databases.
When do you need Apex?
According to Salesforce, Salesforce is a platform that hardly needs any code and you can manage just fine with point and click. So, why is there still a need for Salesforce developers and a programming language like Apex?
Sometimes a business needs more complex business functionalities or processes than are available in the standard Salesforce environment. This is when you need a Salesforce developer. In order to create these extra functionalities developers use Apex.
For most developers Apex is fairly easy to learn; it is a lot like Java and Salesforce provides free Trailhead courses in preparation for their developer certification. Developers use Salesforce’s Lightning Platform to write their code and create new functionalities and processes.