If you look at the no-code/low-code platforms public information today, I must admit you can end up confused. You certainly read a lot about the benefits of these platforms, ranging from cost to usability and agility while you successfully overcome the need for code. You quickly find information about how to build your minim-viable-product (MVP), get your first customers, and promptly (in)validate your business idea.
You may also read about no-code/low-code platforms in SMBs and Enterprises focused on the vast array of benefits that it covers. It addresses historical, yet actual challenges that occur inside a corporation, e.g.:
- Internal projects that are built on numerous platforms or different development tools eventually, need to be connected and exchange information
- Still, a lot of time and resources are dedicated to hand-coding for simple tasks like logins, simple workflows, and views without reusing the code
- Legacy apps that are too complex, too glitchy, and incompatible with today's requirements
- Software projects usually take too long to deliver what the business needs and when the business needs it
- Development of the software project proves inflexible, as one could often hear about the "requirements done, any change to that will push the project deadline."
- Changing enterprise software requires time (slow) and money, often being delayed and not as simple as the plan looked in the beginning
- Modern focused apps (Human Capital Management apps or Subscription Management apps to name a couple) have a complex, apply-on-all database and add on the resources and cost
Make no mistake. All of the above is 100% true - a statement that thousands of web apps built for various purposes in the last 18 months, including tackling and reporting on the late pandemic that hit us in December 2019 (#COVID19).
Moreover, if you do some digging, you will see that this represents the new battlefield for software giants like Microsoft, Amazon, and Google, who are including no-code/low-code platforms in their portfolios. Just this year alone, you can learn about Google Cloud acquisition of AppSheet specifically targeted at businesses. Microsoft praises its new Power App beta version with significant improvements.
The 'Consumer' Of No-Code/Low-Code Platforms
Entrepreneurs probably represent the first category of no-code/low-code consumers, and they will take full advantage of that. The coding barrier is quickly falling, and their "big idea" can reach customers in just months or even less. Business analysts and product managers can now quickly build their own prototypes to help with the backlog and prerequisite discussions. Anyone who needs a simple web app with database support to simplify a task can spend 15 days with online tutorials and build it, without even trying to get the project to the development queue. Other names used for this type of consumer that you might encounter are "citizen developer," "visual developer," or "power user." "Technologist" or non-technologist.
We do foresee a problem here, and this can upset many of our readers: their results will represent one or multiple micro-sites with one or more database support, which might not scale with the business starting month twelve of organic growth.
The second category of no-code/low-code consumers will be businesses - of all sizes. However, this is a different playground with ten of thousands of vendors participating, both no-code/low-code platforms and hand-coding software. Established software players in this category rely on a ten-years revenue from a single customer, as change rarely happens once you have created a "horizontal" footprint.
But even with an established footprint inside an enterprise, no-code/low-code platforms will have to rely on that unsatisfied inside employee that wants more and wants to find software alternatives that fit the business needs precisely. This employee is that inside champion willing to give his last "dying breath" to demonstrate that software will need to adapt to business needs, and not the business to the software's capabilities. And everything starts with the concept of doing things better. The initial proof of concept won’t even have any ROI at first to justify making it a priority for the development team, so why not let him do it? To that, we say - good luck. Penetrating enterprises is hard, and it will remain the same for a long time (especially during and after #COVID-19 times). Relying only on that internal champion will not get the money in the bank.
The key to starting with these platforms is simple: define what type of no-code/low-code platform consumer you are and then explore the ecosystem until you find a builder that you like. Start creating.
Software Alternatives For Managing Sales, Product and Employee
We are currently coding that enterprise platform, with the second category of no-code/low-code platform consumers in our target. We also consider that enterprise no-code platforms should be capable of mastering the limitations of current no-code micro-site builders.
In short, we are building a no-code platform that:
- covers even the most peculiar method of doing business with your sales, product, and employee
- offers straightforward database access
- have unlimited expandability and minimal maintenance
- has security as a core with hands-on best practices and the latest protection technologies.