One of the significant movements in IT over recent years has been a trend towards the low code and no code tools and platforms.

Low code application development lets businesses build apps faster with minimum coding. While, it’s been a while for these low code platforms to come into existence, they were initially introduced as auto code generation tools that evolved into enterprise-grade app development platforms covering the entire app delivery.

Present day low-code platforms speed up the entire app delivery process right from requirements to deployment stage.  Some of the critical app delivery areas that get optimized using low code platforms are:

•        Coding gets replaced by visual app building, where the developer creates the entire end-user experience right from the start, using simple drag and drop interface of UI components.

•        Using, Low code platforms the entire artefacts of the project including front/back end coding, executables, configuration files are easily generated based on standard best practices. They also eliminate human errors in coding.

•        Continuous deployment and integration of the app gets simplified.

Uncovering No-code platforms – Is it a new phenomenon?

Off late joining the family of a new breed of platforms, akin to low code platforms, No code platforms have also emerged.

Low code platform tend to have an edge over no code platforms, particularly during the development phase because the former involve a more intuitive visual development approach. A visual development approach allows the app builder to drag and drop predefined out of the box components into the work area.

However, in some scenarios, during app development, there are certain features that require customization.

For example, when building a particular page of an app, your visual designer would have given an innovative clock widget, in his screen mocks based on the company’s’ standardized widget set, and that is not a part of the default UI widget library of the platform.  In this scenario, low-code platforms allows you to extend the platform capabilities by letting you build such a widget and make it available as a drag-n-drop component for future projects. 

However, if the same company employed a team of developers who built an UI widget library based on the company’s approved design template and is made available out-of-the-box in the platform itself.  Then app building becomes a no-code experience. 

Hence, no-code-platforms are more like an evolution of low-code-platforms to particular scenarios, where the coding extensions are taken care of by providing out of the box visual components.  

To put it as final thoughts, no code platforms are no different from low code platforms, rather are a specialized version of the low code platforms where the customization have been taken care of by pre-building all the required visual components.

Low Code Vs. No Code: Making a Choice for Your Organisation

As is the case with many up and coming technology trends, low code and no code are often used together, reflecting on how this innovative technology will change the face of traditional software applications.  But, if you are considering one for your organization, how will you decide which one to choose and when?

Low Code No Code
Used for more complex applications Use for reporting, analytics and tracking apps  
Apps that are foundational in nature or run important business processes Apps that evolve with frequent updates and changes in use-case
Apps with more than 5 years
lifecycle, fewer updates
Can be integrative or stand
Can be mission critical Good for self-deploying apps  
Offer Better Developer Control Mobile responsive  

How to get started choosing a low-code/no-code platform?

With so many vendors in space, the decision to determine which platform is the best fit can seem overwhelming for companies. Here are some tips to narrow down the selection:

Determine who is going to work

Broadly speaking, low code/no code platforms fall into two market segments: Those for developers and those for the business side. For developers, low code platforms make it easier to deliver more software in shorter time periods-say weeks instead of months.  On the other hand, for the business side or “citizen developers”, low code lets people without any prior programming experience to create their own software.

Companies must decide which side they need a platform for, and which will fit their purpose best. For instance, let’s say you are trying to empower your business people and you don’t intend to put a tool designed for developers in front of them. It makes things complicated.  On the opposite side, developers will ask for more control than a readymade product that has been given to them.

Chalk out the use cases the company wants to deliver

Each tool offers functions in different areas, including workflow and business process applications. You should select a low-code platform that fits your individual project needs.

Build a strategy that comprises governance

Whether done with or without coding, building and maintaining software is difficult. In order to make the most out of low code platforms, work on building a strategy which includes a portfolio management system, which can help employees keep track of what apps have already been built in the platform. Experts recommend to start small, invest in staff training, and identify a business leader to champion low-code projects.

What are the differences between the profile of a Low Code/ No Code User?

No code platforms are better suited for innovative and problem solving professionals who are aiming for better performance in the competition curve.

With basic spreadsheet skills, business professionals can leverage no code platforms to quickly build custom applications to solve business challenges, securely manage data, view real time reports and accomplish similar tasks without writing a single line of code.  They can use existing templates or drag and drop features to build apps right from scratch. Continuous business improvement also becomes a cakewalk as app admins with access permission can easily update apps and workflows as needed.

On the other hand, Low code platforms are an ideal fit for professional developers and coders who wish to achieve higher productivity and better service to clients by streamlining the application development process. Using declarative tools, these coders can create complex, enterprise grade apps with high-control data permissions. Whether it’s tracking core business process for supply chain inventory or building a complex customer database, low-code platforms allow developers to be on the cutting edge of innovation while reducing project backlogs with self-service tools to support line of businesses.

Final Thoughts

As you disembark on the journey, evaluating low code and no-code platforms, make sure to visualize your end goal. Do you wish to decrease your IT expenditure on traditional software applications that require frequent maintenance and yearly renewals? Or, you are aiming for digital transformation of your company empowering teams, and more technically-minded personnel to create the applications that incorporate the features and workflow they need to be successful.

Then you are in luck: No code and low code platforms can actually help! Once you have determined what you wish to accomplish, move forward evaluating your skill and staff. No-code and low-code application development platforms have a lot to offer and choosing the one right for your needs and goals will go a long way.