According to McKinsey, the pandemic has contributed to three fundamental business changes – new customer behavior and needs, unpredictable demand, and a large spike in remote work. These changes have fueled a “rapid migration to digital technologies in all industries and sectors.” For instance, U.S. e-commerce penetration was previously forecast to reach 24% by 2024 but increased from 17% to 33% in just two months.
Low-code platforms have been key in enabling rapid automation and furthering digital transformation initiatives. Research by KPMG found that since the start of the pandemic the number of executives listing low-code development platforms as their most important automation investment has nearly tripled. Moreover, 100% of organizations that have implemented a low-code development platform reported a positive return on their investment.
Leveraging Low-Code and Automation
While rapid application development tools have been around for many years, the term “low-code” was first coined by Forrester Research in 2014. Forrester defines low-code platforms as enabling “rapid delivery of business applications with a minimum of hand-coding and minimal upfront investment in setup, training, and deployment.”
Low-code platforms typically offer drag-and-drop interfaces and prebuilt functions, allowing people that have little to no experience with coding to create enterprise-grade applications. The extension of development capabilities to non-technical users is key. Organizations face serious hiring shortages due to a lack of qualified developers.
Large organizations with deep pockets snatch up top talent, making it harder for smaller businesses to compete. These smaller organizations can leverage low-code platforms to achieve their business objectives and deliver exceptional customer experiences that would not be possible otherwise.
And it is not just non-technical users that benefit from low-code platforms. Overtaxed developers can use low-code technologies to automate manual and repetitive tasks, allowing them to focus on value-added and proprietary development. For example, manually integrating disparate applications and systems is time-consuming. A low-code automation platform that offers API-driven architecture makes it easy to integrate apps, programs, and databases.
Consider that the average employee uses 36 cloud services to perform daily tasks. Switching between systems is inefficient and can lead to costly errors. With APIs, developers do not have to spend countless hours writing code to enable integration. Low-code automation technology helps them to do it quickly, allowing them to work on other tasks while simultaneously improving employee productivity.
Low-Code: Providing a unified automation strategy
Low-code platforms also play a key role in helping organizations to develop a unified automation strategy. According to KPMG, “Low-code means organizations no longer need to think in terms of having separate agendas for, say, robotic process automation, machine learning, analytics, or cloud – agendas often focused as much, if not more, on IT magic than on business outcomes, and requiring extensive coding after they are “completed” to deliver positive business results.”
Instead, stakeholders can focus on pursuing digital transformation initiatives and providing better experiences for both employees and customers. ProcessMaker offers low-code intelligent business process management software (iBPMS) that allows organizations to quickly scale their automation initiatives and transform their organizations.