What is Low Code and No Code Development?
1st July, 2021
Recently, there has been a flurry of activity around low-code and no-code development. Low code development is a visual approach to software development, through an intuitive drag and drop interface into a workforce. It helps developers of different skill levels to design their apps quickly with minimal writing of coding. It is almost like building any other software, but the main difference would be in the types of shortcuts offered.
Low code and no code are built on extended cloud based PaaS environments and houses visual programming interfaces to solve business problems much more successfully than traditional software development. This increases professional developers skills several times fold. And for the non IT professionals, this is almost like a dream come true, thanks to the drag and drop functionality and pre-built integrations and functions. The low code scenario puts more power into the hands of the non-IT professionals, and help them create scalable business applications as per the changing business requirements.
In fact with low code applications, there is a new kind of power that’s unleashed to the businesses, binding organizations and its operations in a unique way, making it easy for businesses to scale their apps in a way that was never before possible.
This is so much easier than the two options businesses had when they needed new information systems. The first option was to build a new system from scratch using their own developers. This is called the ‘build’ approach , and businesses almost get a result that’s close to their requirements. But that could mean higher costs, and a long wait. The second alternative could be cheaper and faster, but it could not be something that the organizations were really looking out for.
It is the third option that’s getting popular now – the LC/NC option. Not only can it be implemented quickly, but it will always be a close fit to what they are looking out for. Through the point and click feature and the pull down interfaces, anyone can become a developer and produce results within a few hours.
Advantages of low code development
- Rapid delivery of apps
It is possible to achieve unparalleled time to value with the existing talent that you have, and rapid delivery will make you realise other business goals. If there are cross-functional teams working on this application, then low code helps in enabling faster decision making, and there are baked-in collaboration tools as well.
- Developer productivity is highly impressive
Companies do not need to hire professional software developers and they already have a very good developer on the team, they can finish the job without hiring extra people. An important caveat to remember is that NC software requires some amount of IT involvement while doing complex, mission critical or enterprise-wide systems. So while singing all the positive things about LC/NC, the developer should have some amount of technical capability to maintain, scale and integrate the app.
- Comes with small-scale automation capabilities
It is the pro developers who perform the automation of large-scale enterprise processes and workflows. When there are smaller workflows to automate, LC/NC would suffice as it can perform almost all the tasks that humans can do on the computer – like reaching into the database, transactional systems and so on. It can also easily do small tasks like working with spreadsheets, word processing and electronic file folders.
Small scale automation capabilities also allow for attractive and insightful visual analytics. The insights are often delivered through a text based or voice message or even as chats. This is still in the developing stage, and through predictive analysis and machine learning software, the data analyst will be able to do his job much more accurately.
- Excellent speed
It is possible to build apps for multiple platforms simultaneously, and businesses can be out with a working application in a matter of days or hours, depending on its complexity. The speed of delivery is remarkable.
- One click deployment
LC allows for quicker deployment through the single click of a button. You can launch apps faster, and with much more ease.
- More focus on business aspect
Low code allows for excellent cross-platform support, data integration and robust security processes.
- Choose No-Code if you feel:
You just need a simple app to promote your business or to solve a business problem. Hiring a professional IT team would entail a lot of wait until the app is developed, with no-code platforms, anyone in the company can build in the app. Usually the app would be something that contributes to the business process management, but mission critical to the project. If you are looking for a quick solution to address an immediate need, no-code is the perfect option.
The major downside to no code is that the task is done by non-professionals so it would be without proper supervision or consideration. This could lead to integration problems, compliance issues, security concerns and so on.
Differences in Low code and No code
So, what is no code? As the name suggests, no code is all about drag and drop, visual deployment. And hence, it is perfectly suitable for people who do not know any actual programming languages, but would like to develop their own application for a particular use. There is no need for any formal training for the ‘developers’ because it is not at all technical. The perfect example of a no code platform would be the blog that the user would like to deploy or launch a business in minutes. The platform has the tools the user needs to come up with the blog, so there wouldn’t be a need for professional developers.
Though LC and NC are often used interchangeably, there are some subtle differences between the two. In low code solutions, the users should have some development experience, and help them when they need to develop apps quickly, allowing linkages to databases, backend systems, APIs or web services. With no-code solutions, the visual drag and drop interfaces need no coding at all.
The pressure of businesses to deliver to their customers during the Covid 19 pandemic has been a reason for this popularity, and smaller companies and startups can also reach out to their people. They won’t have to worry about advanced development tools and the best tech talents, but do the best with existing resources.
These tools do give you the shortcut to create a simple department or mobile app, and they do support your digital goals for a while, but if you are looking for AI capabilities, and an app with high-productivity then you need to look for a platform that combines the two.
If you are looking at the marketing side, then LC/NC tools do allow for easy marketing activities like email marketing, website personalization and digital ad trafficking.
Another downside to creating such quick apps would be that the users who develop the app might leave the company at some time, and the others may not know how to scale the app, or the app might not work as desired. So it would be best if the IT companies have some hold over the system development, and which LC/NC tools are being used.
Here are some low code platforms that you can try:
Visual Lansa – Cloud-based platforms; suitable for small, medium sized companies
GeneXus – Windows, Mac, Minus, Web-based; suitable for small, medium sized companies
Zoho Creator – Cloud-based, iOS, Android and PWA platforms; suitable for small, medium sized companies
Creatio – Windows, Mac, Web-based; suitable for medium to large sized companies
Appian – Cloud-based, Windows, Mac, Minux, UNIX, Solaris; suitable for small, medium to large sized companies
Low code and No code development is really the a thing around with the onset of Covid 19 crisis, the number of businesses opting for these development platforms have tripled, according to a survey by KPMG. They see low code as the future of application development. When skilled developers work with low code, they do not have to get hamstrung with duplicate work or repetitive coding. They just have to focus their skills on architecting the application, and the grunt work would be handled by the low code platforms.
Both LC and NC are perfect for startups, especially if they want to market their apps without any delay.
Though LC helps you build user-friendly responsive apps, you can build only very simple apps, without much of a customization. Low code however, requires a little knowledge in coding, since you will have to solve compliance or security issues.
So, you can say that LC and NC can be the future of application development. If speedy delivery of apps is something you are looking for, then you can try these tools. Both startups and even large enterprises can opt for no-code platforms to launch a live product quickly. So if you are looking at minimal time and resources, and do not want to wait 3-6 months for an application or wish to escape the hassle of hiring a developing team then this would be a good option.
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