In 2021, after the pandemic outbreak and social distancing limitations, businesses worldwide understand much better than ever before how essential it is to go digital to sustain their market share. Growing customer expectations force companies to find new ways to respond to the market changes more readily than their competitors. Being more responsive and agile has become a must in today’s do-or-die digital transformation movement.
Software industry has changed. The introduction of new software into the mainstream has sped up. Waiting months or years for the next software version release is not acceptable. Today, new features are released in days or weeks in modern agile systems for software development. And this is possible due to the use of low-code platforms.
Not long ago, you had only 2 options to choose from when going digital: hiring a third-party vendor, or laying the responsibility for implementing digital transformation on your IT department’s shoulders. Both approaches have big disadvantages: third-party vendors can be too expensive, while in-house IT departments are too busy with their usual responsibilities i.e. supporting routine updates, configuring existing systems, etc.
Low-code development platforms allow you to build apps to conduct digital transformation 10 times faster than with traditional coding. There’s no need to know programming languages and keep up with the endless updates in technology stacks. You can use a drag-and-drop interface to create relationships, workflows, data connections, build dashboards, etc. Low-code platforms provide templates of existing device configurations that could be updated with new parameters when needed and automatically pushed out. No manual configuration. Through automation a low-code approach offers, you can save time and effort while increasing your systems’ reliability.
Low-code development tools are one of the most versatile options on the market: they offer templates and built-in UI components and connectors to those who don’t have any coding skills at all, and they simultaneously provide an ability to add custom code and build custom components and business logic to software engineers.
With the use of low-code development platforms, you enable business users to build business apps or internal tools on their own. Thus, the innovation process becomes more agile, and business users are able to implement new solutions to improve their work performance independently from developers. Also, if you decide to add custom code to your app, low-code platforms give warnings if there are errors, and offer suggestions to correct them. Thus, a development team spend much less time on fixing problems, and the overall time needed to create a digital transformation solution is reduced.
The easy-to-use interfaces of low-code platforms allow business users, IT departments, and stakeholders to create applications optimized for collaboration. Although the administration rights ensuring the overall visibility over your system will still be retained by IT, they won’t need to create every app themselves now. Instead, the development can be passed on to business users, also called citizen developers.
The low-code approach accelerates the app development cycle for both IT professionals and business users due to the prebuilt functionality low-code platforms have, i.e. ready-made templates, UI components, connectors, etc. The time spent on design and coding is minimized. The delivery of a new app takes days or weeks instead of months. All the further iterations are added and deployed on the go. Due to the decreased time-to-market the use of low-code platforms for digital transformation ensures, you can achieve a higher return on platform investment.
According to Forbes, 84% of companies who make customer experience a priority achieve a significant increase in revenue. One of the key goals of digital transformation is to improve your customers’ journey with your brand. With low-code, you can build, roll out, scale your apps to keep up with the growing user requirements. Moreover, to ensure better customer experience, a number of low-code platforms allow for building apps with responsive design automatically optimized for mobile. Your IT department doesn’t need to spend time on that.
With the digital transformation conducted using low-code, you can get all the needed data you need faster, and further analyse it to create value. Low-code platforms can also be leveraged to develop dashboards allowing the users with different access levels see only the data relevant to their needs.
What’s more, low-code platforms allow you to integrate your legacy systems, out-of-the-box solutions, third-party services to your app or internal tool you’re building. Due to this, you can improve and standardize all your data ensuring its consistency throughout the company.
Compared to the use of out-of-the-box solutions or custom app development, low-code platforms allow you to save on the app development costs. You don’t need to hire skilled professionals for app development, and any business user with no mature frontend development skills can scale your app as your requirements expand.
There’s a variety of low-code platforms today offering solutions for visual modelling, business process management, application lifecycle management including app deployment and updates, and more.
With low-code platforms available on the market in 2021, you can create:
Nowadays, even the “big cloud players” have offerings in the low-code development space. Microsoft have been working on their PowerApps for several years already, Google Cloud works on AppSheet, AWS released Honeycode in 2020. The other low-code platforms like Retool, Internal.io, UI Bakery are available as well.
Modern low-code platforms offer ready-made application infrastructure, better usability with intuitive user interfaces, data connection & API integration, one-click app deployment, and more.
Whether you’ve just started digitizing your business, or you’re nearing the halfway point of the trip, consider how low-code platforms can aid in your digital transformation process. Investigate the most suitable low-code tools to figure out how they work, what features they have, and what security level they ensure. Build a sample project. This will not require a lot of investments from you while your return can be really high.