Every company is digitally transforming to some extent nowadays. However, not every company has the same level of technical expertise, and this is where a practice called low-code development promises to level the playing field for both digital and non-digital experts.
Low-code is a way to design applications quickly and with minimum manual coding. Instead, a modular approach is used where existing features and functionality of an application can be reused across many applications.
Using a graphical user interface, this requires little development experience, opening up app development to a broader range of people than ever before.
Skilled developers can also work faster and smarter thanks to low-code platforms. Instead of wasting time with repetitive coding or duplicating their work, they can focus on developing new and unique features.
As digital transformation accelerates, data volumes increase and our products become smarter, low-code initiatives are needed more now than ever before. From a digital transformation perspective, the benefits of low-code platforms include:
• Speed: Low-code substantially reduces the time to develop and test your applications. Developers can build multiple applications across multiple platforms simultaneously. Coding duplication is minimized and developers can focus on value-added design tasks for your applications.
• Democratization: Low-code is simple to learn, often using a drag-and-drop interface. This allows employees with basic IT skills and also non-technical staff to build applications faster and more efficiently than ever before.
• Data integration: Low-code platforms are highly customizable and scalable, allowing staff to integrate any new applications with existing enterprise software such as your ERP, CRM, custom applications and databases.
• Low risk: Low-code platforms come with robust security processes, cross-platform support and data integration, providing consistency in your application development environment. This means less risk and more time to focus on your business.
• Reduced cost: Low-code can help your developers get more done in less time, reducing project backlogs and the cost associated with such projects. O&M costs are also reduced because, simply put, there is less code to maintain and monitor.
• Simple application management: It’s easy to send your application to production using a low-code platform, often using a single click. Depending on your low-code platform, all the stages of the application life cycle can be performed from a single point in real-time. This not only streamlines version control but also helps ensure security and compliance.
• Scalability: The easy and global cloud deployment opportunities from Alibaba Cloud also makes it was to extend your applications from one geographic location to another.
Low-code initiatives are increasingly popular within the world of application development. Gartner predicts 70% of new applications will be developed using low-code or no-code technologies.
Gartner also claims that the transition to low-code will unleash the potential of a cohort of business technologists that create technology or have analytics capabilities, but don’t report directly to their IT department. Some 41% of employees identify as being in this cohort, according to Gartner.
In a similar vein to low-code initiatives, no-code further democratizes application development to all members of staff. These no-code platforms lower the barrier to entry further, so anyone in your organization can build an app. They provide a way for non-technical users to address an immediate business need without distracting their IT teams.
However, no-code practices are not suitable for complex applications. Instead, they should be used for front-end use cases. Low-code, however, is useful when developing standalone applications that integrate with your other systems and data sources.
For those companies digitally transforming, it’s important to remember that there’s no single tool to automatically make this transformation a reality. Such digitization requires a wide range of new technologies and tools.
Low-code platforms can play a central role in accelerating your digital journey, reducing the time and cost of your application development while empowering staff to delve into development, regardless of their technical background.
Alibaba Cloud is a global leader in cloud computing and artificial intelligence, providing services to thousands of enterprises, developers, and governments organizations in more than 200 countries and regions. Committed to the success of its customers, we can help your business identify and work with the right solutions, regardless of your level of technical expertise. Contact us today to find out how.
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