Low-code solutions are proving the next new digital goldmine for organisations looking to transform application development and delivery while customising automation workflows and business processes. They are, say Gartner, providing both professional IT developers and non-IT people with tools they can use to achieve impressive levels of ‘digital competency and speed of delivery’ which are needed in the current modern business environment. Low-code technologies are putting the power of development into anyone’s hands, creating a new species of employee – the citizen developers, or, as Gartner calls them, business technologists.
Here, within the hallowed hallways of easily accessible interfaces and low-code solutions, citizen developers can drag-and-drop their way into customised solutions or automated business processes that make their lives easier and more efficient. It is the democratisation of development made possible through tools that come on platforms such as Microsoft Power Platform, and that includes Microsoft PowerApps, Power BI, Power Automate and Power Virtual Agents (to name a few).
But what are the benefits of this revolution, to both the business and the employee?
- Using built-in intelligence, smart tools and pre-built components and interfaces, teams can take on the development of solutions that meet very real business and customer needs.
- Anyone can build a simple application or automate a frustrating business process without having to spend hours learning how to code. The environments provided by low-code/no-code platforms, like the Microsoft Power Platform, are designed to be as intuitive as possible.
- The cost of creating apps and solutions within the business drops dramatically as you reduce your reliance on high-end developers for every app and solution while empowering your workforce to optimise processes.
- Reduce backlogs and delays in app development by empowering people to use low-code solutions. According to Microsoft, 89% of CIOs and IT pros believe that low-code is a powerful way of increasing efficiencies.
Of course, there are challenges that companies need to look out for, that include:
- You can’t necessarily adopt citizen-developed solutions at scale across the business, and many excellent solutions may not even be shared with the wider company.
- The performance of low-code solutions can be less than those of applications developed in a programming language, and they may require significant changes to make small shifts in behaviour.
- There need to be clear processes and plans in place to ensure any apps are developed in line with clear company policies and meet very basic compliance expectations.
But the success stories are an exciting look into a future that’s defined by innovation.
- The American Red Cross – a training specialist with no IT training and only a little knowledge of the Microsoft ecosystem used Microsoft PowerApps, Power BI and Microsoft Flow to transform how trainers ordered supplies.
- Wespac – the company implemented the Microsoft Power Platform to create a space that would allow for users to build solutions that suited their needs. Citizen developers have since built more than 1,000 apps used by 15,000 people.
The case studies and successful examples of low-code and its capabilities are increasing with more companies adopting it as a fast and smart way to optimise processes and empower employees.
So, how does your company step into the world of low-code? The answer is Mint. Mint can empower your development process thanks to our in-depth knowledge of the Microsoft ecosystem and the Microsoft Power Platform. We know which low-code solutions will best fit your business and we help you create the right tools to build an empowered workforce of citizen developers.