What Is Low Code Development and Why It Matters
Low code development can help your business respond to changes faster and in a cost-effective manner. Here’s what you need to know.
Modern businesses need to be able to adapt to changing conditions quickly, meet customer demands, and keep up with the competition. Low code development is becoming increasingly popular as it helps businesses build applications in-house without relying heavily on manual progamming – which can be complex, time-consuming, and costly.
This approach has introduced innovative technologies, which are simple enough for novices to build high-value solutions yet way more sophisticated to meet the requirements of coding experts tackling complex challenges. As predicted by Gartner, about 65% of all application-making will be powered by low-code platforms by 2024.
In this article, learn how the low-code approach is beneficial for small and mid-sized businesses, along with how to get started with low code development in your own organization.
Firstly, What is Low Code Development?
Low code is an application development approach that enables business professionals to design and build software via the graphical user interface (GUI) and embedded functionalities that minimize traditional writing requirements. Unlike technical coding, this method creates custom code with many ready-to-use UI components, boilerplate scripts and integrations, visual workflow automation applications, solution blueprints, and various other user-friendly features.
Low Code Development Platforms
Low-code development platforms (LCDPs) offer a development environment for building applications through GUI. Such a platform may create fully operational software or use additional coding in certain situations. These are designed to decrease the amount of time spent, allowing accelerated delivery of business tools. According to Forrester, low-code platforms make application development ten times faster than traditional coding techniques.
These platforms remove the repetitive and arduous tasks like code validation, dependency management, and complex builds by automating the processes and other monotonous facets of development. The good part is that it enables a wider range of people to contribute to software development – not only those with professional coding expertise. In addition, it can reduce the starting cost of setup, training, deployment, and upkeep.
One of the more popular low-code development platforms is Microsoft Power Apps. With this application creator, users can create web- and mobile-based software using low code to enable interaction with data sources and services within the MS 365 ecosystem.
Advantages and Limitations of Low Code Development Platforms
Beyond a doubt, low-code development is increasingly becoming a vital part of the business sphere. Now that we have explored what low-code platforms are, let’s have a look at some of their major advantages and some of their limitations.
Benefits of Low Code Platforms
✨ Increased Productivity
Streamlined applications built with the use of low-code platforms make teams more productive. Programmers might trade off some programming flexibility for enhanced efficiency, but low-code platforms save their time so they can focus on projects that demand more extensive coding.
✨ Automatic Upgrades
Managed by the hosting company, low-code platforms roll out the latest updates and functionalities to all applications that run on them with no need for a team or third-party provider.
✨ No Talent Gaps
They play a vital part in the growing business landscape since they democratize programming. Though it is not as simple as no-code development, low-code development is still highly accessible and allows virtually anyone of any level to have a hand in application making. Due to this, organizations are now able to fill talent gaps by allowing people with zero coding experience to partake in software development.
✨ Better Time Consumption
Such platforms not only make software development more accessible but also allow programmers to dedicate their valuable time and focus to more complex designs by eliminating the need to write long coding scripts.
✨ More Agility
With low-code platforms, custom applications can be created in a matter of days – much more quickly than the months-long procedure linked to traditional app development. Also, by saving time on manual coding and testing, these can make your business more agile and adaptable to changes in user expectations.
Limitations of Low Code Platforms
🔎 Not a Full Replacement
Though such software might be useful for individuals with limited coding skills, there remains a need for seasoned developers. Irrespective of the type of low-code platform you pick, you will still require professionals to handle more complicated tasks.
🔎 Additional Investment for Custom Applications
Pre-built low-code modules restrict software customization, albeit the work convenience it offers. Many of these modules are developed to serve in a particular way and are generic in nature. For thorough customization in your environment, you might need to consider investing in custom application development.
4 Tips on Getting Started with Low Code Development Platforms
Here’s how to get started with low code development in your own organization:
✅ Start Small
When developing software for the first time, start with a straightforward platform. This certainly doesn’t indicate that you can’t move on to something more complex in the time to come. Begin with the simplest, least intimidating low-code platforms prior to shifting to complex ones. In addition, start with the creation of the simplest applications, including form submissions, not to overwhelm your team. Defined paper-based, file-sharing, and email operations between multiple people are right to bring into low-code platforms to give process control and visibility. Choose a clearly defined task for your primary low-code project and have clarity about your final application. This lets you dig in and explore a platform while staying focused.
✅ Know Your Target Audience
It begins with understanding the issue you want to handle and the data you will use when developing a low-code application. Equally important is to know who is going to use your solution and in what ways. In the case of you and your team being the users, it is good to start with solving a challenge anyone of you is experiencing. Figuring out how you are going to access an application: for instance, via a tablet or a phone, will make the process of software development relatively easier. But if your application is intended for external use where customers will be involved, spend some time understanding them. From thinking about their devices to analyzing their digital activities, take different approaches to build better low-code solutions.
✅ Prioritize Data Privacy
Your data security should be an important concern if you are giving thought to move to low-code platforms. Major priorities should cover whether the platform features enough controls to ensure the safety of data. Based on the tool, firms may be able to limit certain types of data or how it is used. Therefore, it is important to pick a low-code software platform that matches the experience level of the developers. For example, when using Power Apps, you are building on an increasingly secure and governed platform built by Microsoft. It is developed for enterprise use, having built-in controls governing data access, security, and compliance.
✅ Opt for a Hybrid Plan
Last but not least, adopt a hybrid strategy. This indicates that you can use low-code for building the front end of the application while the back end is hand-coded by professional programmers. This could be useful for those working with a larger and more complex application with a lot of users.
Learn More About Microsoft Power Apps
Low-code platforms like Microsoft Power Apps are helping small and medium-sized companies revolutionize the way they solve their business issues and give them the competitive edge needed to meet current market demands. Power Apps lets you easily build and share professional-grade low-code applications quickly, thanks to its drag-and-drop user interface and pre-build user experience components. Here are some resources for further reading:
Need Help Getting Started?
If you’re looking for a Microsoft Power Apps partner to help you get started on building your custom application, get in touch with the Kwixand Solutions team. We’re a Microsoft Partner based in Canada, and we’ve helped organizations across US and Canada get started successfully with Power Apps.