With millions of people starting to work from home due to the sanitary crisis, businesses had no choice but to adapt. In order to ease that process, many organizations turned their attention towards low-code and no-code development platforms.
What are low-code/no-code development platforms?
A low-code/no-code development platform is a visual software development environment, allowing citizen developers to drag and drop application components, connect them together, and create an application. This new approach enables professional developers to build applications faster by removing the need to write code line by line.
Low-code and no-code platforms allow non-programmers to develop and test business workflow applications and then integrate them into larger business processes. Indeed, there is no need to know everything about traditional programming languages, machine code, or the development work for building the platform’s configurable components anymore. Non-developers are able to use this user-friendly graphical user interface (GUI), which allows components and third-party application program interfaces (APIs) to be put together and tested. These modules can be tested over and over again until the application works as it should.
Recently, the rise in low- and no-code platforms is due to a lack of skilled software developers and the need to create faster development projects so as issues can be fixed rapidly.
Is low-code/no-code the future?
Using low-code/no-code could solve problems faster and easier than with traditional methodologies. With the spread of the pandemic, the use of low-code platforms and products increased, in part due to Microsoft’s products such as PowerApps, Flow, or even Power BI.
Moreover, these platforms give more time to professional developers by freeing them from mundane programming activities. Development teams can use these platforms to speed up the creation of apps for commodity functions and then have more time modifying them to give them more value. Thus, low code allows enterprises to be quicker and more efficient to the need of customers by implementing new features or tech and security protocols.
However, the skill to build large-scale, enterprise-class apps will still require high-skilled programmers. Even though these development platforms will be important in the future, it won’t replace traditional software development as low code cannot follow when the complexity increases. Besides, low-code and no-code platforms will have a hard time managing, maintaining, and scaling more complex apps.
These challenges add to the already important IT, business, and data governance requirements faced by organizational leaders, making it too complicated to adopt these platforms.
Low-code users are required to know some programming while no-code platforms users don’t need any. This is a vital difference. Low code remains very useful to build simple applications. Indeed, low code can allow developers to pre-build blocks they require to develop complex applications, that way it takes less time to train new people to maintain and modify the code. This introduces a new generation of developers who might not be high-skilled experts in coding or programming languages.
While the pandemic is still expanding, it is very likely that low-code platforms will only grow in importance as they allow people to solve process and workflow problems from home. Low code will now be a more essential part of organizations and become a stable tool to drive the efficiency and speed of development in the future.
Yet, low-code is not to replace completely traditional programming methods as complex applications still require high-skilled developers who will understand the requirements and functions of an application at the line-of-code level.