No-code and low-code software tools have garnered much popularity, especially recently. Whether a business is already familiar with the software or has never heard of it till now, learning about how to leverage low-code in a dynamically changing workforce will help SMBs with limited budgets and time restraints meet customization and automation needs.
Businesses have had to digitize rapidly, due to shifts onset from the pandemic. However, allotting resources and money toward software development is challenging for most organizations, especially smaller ones who’ve struggled the most in the last year. According to Gartner, the market demand for software application development will increase more than 5 times through 2021, with more than 65% of application development in 2024 being performed by low code platforms. This means that SMBs need to transition from a reactionary position on no-code and low-code to one that equips their business for the future to innovate and scale.
What is Low-Code?
Low-code is a way to design and develop applications with little or no coding. It empowers users with little to no technical background to create applications from scratch using everything from simple drag and drop features to more complex functions.Through low-code business professionals can capture the art of programming without having to learn how to code so that they can make applications without having to hire professional developers.
Why Businesses Should Consider Low-Code
Low-code adds to optimization and increased productivity by automating processes and adding customization to businesses’ unique needs. Here are five ways that small businesses can leverage low-code.
1. Cost Savings
Because low-code platforms are designed for internal teams, they allow less technical users the ability to build applications, which without low-code can sometimes take months or years to develop. However, with low-code the frame work drastically cuts down on development time, which saves companies from hiring external app developers which are costly and time intensive. No longer, do businesses need to program complex applications like business structures or databases. Another plus is that errors that are often created from manual coding are eliminated.
Low-code platforms utilize visual interfaces through flexible drag and drop features making them user-friendly and accessible to professionals from varying proficiency levels. Because these solutions are constructed by business owners, as opposed to a third party developer, the solutions naturally work better within the business, since the creator is understands the business needs and can anticipate issues that may not be translated in requirement documents.
3. Ranging Complexity
Low-code can be used for everything from simple functions all the way to complex solutions. Organizations can go from utilizing low-code for one-off projects to turning them into a strategic, sustainable operations. This means businesses can build more complex, multi-platform applications from call logs to ERPs, that integrate with a businesses existing processes.
4. The Options are Unlimited
Businesses can leverage low-code platforms to build applications that cover a range of uses. They can do everything from modernizing and automating processes, constructing process automation solutions, business process management applications, and more. Additionally, if a business needs to shift focus on say due to a changing market, low-code allows for that by it’s malleability.
5. Low-code Facilitates Growth
The right low-code platform scales with the organization. For example, as a business grows and processes become more complex, the functionality can easily be added at any time on to current solutions, without having to migrate from one solution to another. This allows businesses the ability to start small and grow their low-code base as needed overtime.
In the past year, small businesses have learned to adapt and digitize to survive, and while the global crisis will subside, its impact will remain. Businesses must move from a reactionary position on low-code, to one that makes their businesses more resilient and better equipped to innovate at speed. Leveraging low-code as a long term solution will provide the customization and flexibility needed to thrive in unpredictable futures. And as organizations look to maximize low-code speed to market, they should consider starting now and starting small. Consider important factors such as privacy and security, and look closely at how low-code can support the businesses needs.
Small businesses can make low-code a formal, self-sustaining function with their organizations, but to do that means crafting a vision, setting clear goals, and putting a plan in place to execute methodically. Even if businesses start small, over time those micro apps and apps built on the platform grow in scope and complexity and end up becoming a sustainable growth engine for business.
Zoho wants to show their support to the small business community on Small Business Week by providing a free, educational workshop on the basics of low-code on September 24th. Attendees will also receive a six month trial for Zoho Creator so that they can learn the ins and outs of low-code to help automate and optimize business processes.