Every Company Is a Technology Company
In the past, many of my classmates aspired to become doctors or lawyers, primarily due to the visibility and accessibility of their professions. However, I chose a different path, as did the healthcare industry, with the advent of technology. Nowadays, regardless of one’s career choice, we all work for tech companies.
Technology plays a crucial role in every business and customer experience strategy. The latest IDG State of the CIO survey revealed that 82% of respondents stated that their primary focus is on incorporating new technologies and methods to drive revenue growth, optimize operations, and improve the customer experience. Companies are seeking more efficient ways to upgrade their software solutions and accelerate application delivery.
The challenge lies in the fact that IT teams are already swamped with supporting the existing workload, leaving little room for innovation. Furthermore, the demand for software developers outpaces the global talent pool.
To tackle this issue, merely expanding the IT team is not enough. CIOs must empower employees across the organization to participate in application development as “citizen developers”. This can be achieved through low-code/no-code (LCNC) application development. Employees with little or no coding experience can automate workflows and develop apps using visual tools, such as drag-and-drop, point-and-click, and flow charts, instead of traditional programming. This way, they can experiment, prototype, and deliver apps or automations quickly in collaboration with the IT department and by adhering to the company’s governance model.
Having citizen developers on board enables IT teams to focus on the governance and control of application development and automation, which ultimately leads to faster innovation. By providing low-code/no-code tools and governance models, more employees can tackle business challenges by delivering new apps and extensions. According to Gartner, citizen developers are expected to outnumber professional developers four to one in large enterprises by next year, with 41% of non-IT employees already building or customizing their own solutions.
Low-code/no-code solutions can make software development up to 10 times faster than traditional methods, as stated by Forrester. This transforms innovation into a shared responsibility among all employees. For instance, DHL Freight created a fleet management app without coding using SAP AppGyver. The team wanted a better way to manage drivers and track trailer maintenance during their journeys across Europe. The app provides real-time reports from drivers, and drivers can now report damages to the trailer’s exact location. It is available across multiple languages and platforms, with role- and region-based user authentication.
Another example is Verge, a manufacturer of electric motorcycles, which runs its entire factory operations using apps built with zero lines of code using SAP AppGyver. These apps interface with the company’s ERP system and use formula functions for accurate calculations on the assembly line.
Low-code/no-code tools will soon become a common office skill, just like creating presentations and spreadsheets, due to features like formula functions. The collaboration of professional and citizen developers with low-code/no-code tools can take a company’s innovation capabilities to new heights. Professional developers can focus on core tasks and complex business initiatives, while IT teams gain a deeper understanding of how applications will be used by colleagues and customers and where innovation is needed.
To fully harness the innovation potential of low-code/no-code, a unified developer experience is necessary, supporting both low-code/no-code and professional development. Companies must strike a balance between highly flexible and complex professional development tools and user-friendly tools, empowering every type of developer to build apps quickly and effectively