Today’s CEOs are grappling with an unprecedented 200% surge in disruption, and 85% of business leaders believe that disruption will continue at this blistering pace or even accelerate over the next five years. Pushing the boundaries of innovation is essential for staying competitive, sustaining resilience, and ensuring long-term success. In other words, the ability to rapidly develop and adapt applications has become a critical success factor in a world ridden with uncertainty, and that's precisely where low-code application development comes into play.
Low-code process automation platforms use prebuilt connectors and integrations to add the latest technologies to applications—from new AI capabilities to complete automation stacks for end-to-end workflows. The underlying deployment complexity is taken care of by the low-code platform, thereby democratizing app development, accelerating innovation, and equipping organizations with the resilience they need to overcome disruption.
[ Download the Low-Code Guide to unlock the power of low-code development. ]
The right enterprise low-code platform gives development teams the agility to keep pace with evolutions in business, technology, and strategy. Low-code tools pre-define an application’s infrastructure architecture, so you only have to deal with the workflows, data, and interfaces—the rest takes care of itself, no coding required. Additionally, low-code tools allow you to use high-code if you need it; one doesn’t preclude the other. Let's delve deeper into the significant advantages of low-code.
Why it's important: Go from idea to app in a flash with minimal coding and visual drag-and-drop functionality to capitalize on new opportunities and stave off potential threats. That kind of agility is precisely what low-code development empowers organizations to achieve with reusable components that eliminate the need for coding from scratch. Customizable low-code components enable IT teams to innovate quickly, accomplish more in less time, and accelerate the digital transformation journey.
Why it's important: Since low-code allows more apps to be built in less time, development costs decrease. But, that’s not the only benefit. Taking a low-code development approach reduces the need for more developers, reducing hiring costs. Additionally, savings accrued from workflow automation can be channeled into other growth-driving activities like R&D, marketing, and customer support. Finally, businesses can use low-code to supplement or replace existing applications to reduce the cost of legacy license fees and maintenance.
[ Learn how combining the strengths of low-code and Agile 2 can supercharge software development in your organization. Read Low-Code and Agile 2: Like Peanut Butter and Jelly. ]
Why it's important: With low-code development, time is no longer a barrier to productivity. Increased productivity means businesses can innovate faster and get a better return on investment for every project. Low-code democratizes access to AI technology to unlock productivity for developers. Low-code dramatically accelerates development, reduces implementation times, reduces technical debt, and makes it easier to incorporate generative AI in end-to-end process automations to boost operational productivity.
Why it's important: Improved collaboration fostered by low-code development promotes efficient decision-making, faster problem resolution, and a sense of ownership among team members. Low-code platforms create collaborative workspaces where teams can easily share and integrate custom tools. It’s like a well-organized toolbox that helps your development teams collaborate, ensuring that changes are organized, tracked, and understood, even when multiple developers are working on the same project. This results in more efficient development, which boosts productivity.
Why it's important: With low-code, the downstream effect of faster response times includes a better customer experience, which directly impacts brand loyalty, word-of-mouth referrals, long-term customer value, competitive differentiation, churn reduction, and the cultivation of a customer-centric culture. Additionally, low-code offers the operational agility required to quickly adapt to ever-evolving customer needs.
Why it's important: In a world where regulatory breaches can lead to hefty fines and reputational damage, proactive risk management is crucial. Low-code provides the speed necessary to deliver new functions and capabilities to meet evolving regulatory requirements. Additionally, AI-generated low-code within an AI-powered process platform provides robust guardrails for digital solutions while preserving the privacy and security of the data that fuels those solutions. Enterprise-grade platforms enforce authorization, governance, and data privacy, specifying who can modify or use artifacts and controlling functional capabilities' modularity and data privacy settings, making a platform approach critical for preventing production issues.
Why it’s important: Organizations that can quickly integrate applications, systems, and data to adapt to constant change will outperform companies that can’t. While off-the-shelf solutions may seem tempting for short-term needs, they often lead to complex integration challenges and data silos. An enterprise-class low-code automation platform provides prebuilt, no-code integration and templates that drastically reduce the time needed to connect with databases, cloud services, robotic process automation (RPA) bots, artificial intelligence (AI) tools, and application programming interfaces (APIs), from hours or days to mere minutes.
[ Learn more about low-code platforms and get a framework to evaluate tools in the Ultimate Low-Code Buyer’s Guide. ]
Enhance your low-code journey and get more value from your platform investment with these five essential best practices.
Define clear naming conventions to maintain order.
Develop custom best practice documentation and checklists.
Implement governance to audit and enforce processes.
Create a holistic roadmap to identify dependencies.
Build central components to avoid duplication.
Strengthen your foundation for scalable growth.
Utilize shared modules and components.
Benefit from cost savings and faster deployment.
Consider building your own sharing mechanism.
Embrace the accessibility of low-code for a diverse team.
Leverage vendor training programs and certifications.
Categorize staff by skill level for better planning.
Use low-code where it aligns with platform capabilities.
Avoid forcing it into situations where it's not the best fit.
Ensure requirements match the chosen tool for optimal results.
Successfully adopting low-code development calls for a strategic approach. To help you navigate the process of implementing low-code solutions effectively, consider the following set of critical features when selecting a low-code platform:
Seek a platform that provides prebuilt integrations for widely used business applications and also allows you to create custom integrations. Additionally, you’ll want a low-code application development platform with strong data management capabilities, like data fabric. This flexibility simplifies connecting your low-code platform to virtually any system and dataset, letting it seamlessly fit into your existing ecosystem.
Low-code applications must be able to integrate with a host of systems, including legacy and cloud services, DevOps tools, and office productivity suites. This requires no-code connectors that work with systems from various vendors. A high-quality low-code platform enables you to link new functionality to existing systems, ensuring scalability and adaptability.
Prioritize platforms that offer a mobile-first user experience. Ensuring a superior user experience on mobile devices is essential in today's digital landscape. A platform optimized for mobile device usage eliminates challenges associated with adapting designs and functionalities for mobile use, making it more accessible and user-friendly.
When selecting a low-code platform, it's important to consider one that offers built-in alerting capabilities for critical events. Notification functionality ensures that vital information doesn't escape your attention, which boosts operational efficiency and facilitates informed decision-making.
Prioritizing robust security in a low-code platform is crucial. It's not just a checkbox; it's the foundation of trust for safeguarding your data. Top low-code platforms come with built-in security and compliance features to minimize vulnerabilities. A strong security architecture is a necessity, much like a solid foundation is crucial in constructing a building. Both require precision, control, and the right groundwork for success.
So, whether your primary goal is to enhance security, boost efficiency, reduce technical debt, or gain a competitive edge, the integration of low-code into your digital transformation strategy is a key driver of long-term success.
[ Low-code design makes it easy to quickly deliver new enterprise applications. See why Gartner® named Appian a Leader in Enterprise Low-Code Application Platforms. ]