Features, Insight, Opinion

Accelerating Innovation by Paving the Way for Citizen Developers

Article by: Dinesh Varadharajan, Vice President, Kissflow

The recent acceleration of digital transformation has enhanced the agility, flexibility, and resilience of businesses. As organisations now look to digitalisation to further drive innovation and gain a competitive edge, they have had to look for software development techniques that are faster, more collaborative, and more cost effective. Low code and no code platforms have proved to be the perfect solution.

By 2024, 75 percent of enterprises will use at least four different low-code development tools as part of their digital suite. Low code and no code tools are expected to make up for over 68 percent of total application development activity. What’s more, the global low code development market is expected to reach $10.3 billion by the end of 2021, reporting a CAGR of 22.6 percent from 2020.

As a result, there has been a boost in low code and no code platform adoption. In the Middle East, where IT skills shortages are an all too familiar challenge of IT teams, the ability to combine both IT developers and citizen developers makes no code and low code platforms even more compelling.

The digital transformation catalyst for enterprises

85 percent of organisations fail at digital transformation initiatives because they just aren’t able to implement them in the right way. The reason? Most organisations end up focusing too much on technology and too little on the employees who will be using the technology.

Low code and no code platforms help companies successfully implement digital transformation strategies by putting their employees front and centre with the technical aspects. These tools offer a visual editor and do not require any complicated coding. This allows all employees, including business users who have no technical background, to be a part of the digital transformation process and contribute to it without having to depend on the IT department.

For development teams, low code and no code tools help deliver applications at a faster pace and with fewer bugs. With prebuilt libraries, drag and drop features, reusable components, and automated testing, developers can accelerate the overall development process.

This expedites digital transformation initiatives and decreases overall costs. In fact, over 70 percent of IT leaders believe that low code platforms are way more affordable compared to traditional development platforms.

Paving the way for citizen developers

Your IT team may know how to code and create a bug-free application, but they probably won’t know the main challenges that the application is trying to solve. Low-code and no-code platforms help all relevant stakeholders have a say in the innovation lifecycle and ensure both IT and business employees are involved in the process.

Even employees with no technical experience can transform into citizen developers when given the right tools to create and manage applications. This also helps close the skill gap in organisations and creates a work environment where employees feel empowered to think creatively and turn their ideas into working and well-functioning solutions.

According to a survey, 40 percent of low code developers have a background in business and 70 percent of those are able to learn low code in less than a month’s time.

Taking an agile approach

No code and low code platforms give your employees room to breathe while also giving them the space to experiment. Instead of focusing too much on rigid syntax or the technicalities of coding, employees can focus on creating applications that offer the best end-user experiences, decrease the overall development time, and automate the testing process. The fast iterations also make low code and no code platforms the most efficient option for implementing agile development solutions.

Successful digital transformations need a culture change

While the benefits of no-code and low-code platforms are apparent, for them to be successfully adopted, a cultural change must first happen in your organisation. You need a digital culture where business users are constantly encouraged to brainstorm and create their own applications. More importantly, IT professionals must get more comfortable letting their business-facing colleagues take the wheel.

Organisations need to steadily face the reality that at least some amount of development work will have to get decentralised. The idea is to find a sweet spot between dealing with both citizen developers and IT developers while making sure everyone is comfortable using the new development platforms.

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