Low-Code, Disrupting Technology from the Inside
It’s a big moment for us, finally the wave of low-code is here. We have devoted the past twenty-four months to evangelising low code as the biggest disruptor to traditional coding.
Many of our clients have taken the leap, embracing low code as a definitive strategy delivering speed-to-market, agility, rapid development and one-click deployment. We are helping our low-code clients to build Digital Factories that consume application backlog, enable innovation and rapid deployment of technology solutions to business challenges.
There is still a long way for us to go. The misconception that low-code means lightweight, front-end applications built by citizen developers still prevails. Enlightened clients understand that low-code is a spectrum. At the high-end, low-code is more than capable of developing robust enterprise solutions. The resistance to low-code is not about legacy systems but legacy mindsets.
Would we build a video streaming or trading platform in low-code? Probably not. But for the overwhelming majority of business and organisational challenges it’s not only the best solution but also the fastest, most dependable and attracts the lowest technical debt.
The days of coders handcrafting millions of lines of code to deliver functionality are over. The thirst for code is such that even if 33% of all graduations, worldwide, were in computer sciences there would not be enough resources to meet demand.
Another pressure is that all enterprises reliant on 70’s, 80’s and 90’s systems (banks, utilities, manufacturing etc) cannot survive, let alone achieve growth, without radical digital transformation.
Organisations can now achieve a 5-10x acceleration in development using low-code platforms (of which OutSystems is the best of breed without lock-in to their platform). It’s time for executives to pull their heads from the sand, cease being dictated to by myopic techies and abandon ‘bums on seats’ consultancies. For far too long cohorts of ‘codies’ have dominated technology strategy, the tacit acceptance of over-budget, overdue and under-performing projects proves this.
We have an opportunity, and that opportunity is the Digital Factory. Commercial survival is now inextricably bonded to the singularity called ‘disruption’, the moment in time when artificial intelligence and other technologies are so advanced that humanity undergoes a dramatic and irreversible change. Companies and sectors that have been crushed by technology-agile models will not reappear. Likewise, companies that resist the singularity risk all in a climate where user experience = technology.
Embracing low-code enables the Digital Factory concept to take form. With the long tail of BaU backlog out of the way, resources are free to innovate, more importantly to react instantly to user demand, competition and crisis. Most corporates spend 70-80% of their IT budgets on BaU/legacy, the rest going on DevOps, etc. Low-code breaks the shackles of technical debt, complex legacy back-ends and custom coding.
The 3-Step Process:
- Invest in a low-code platform (we have our favourite…)
- Convert your developers to focus on delivering business advantage and get out of the weeds
- Build and execute a roadmap to re-platform as much of your legacy estate as possible
- Orientate your development talent to deliver customer and brand value
- 75% of all code will be generated on low-code platforms within 5 years.
- Custom coding will always have a small but significant role to play. The shift is going to gain significant momentum this year.
- Organisations that fail to go to a Digital Factory model will go into structural decline as product backlog becomes overwhelming and innovation stalls.
- UK utilities will begin melt-down as they fail to modernise their technology, demands of consumers will drive down price and increase costs of technology.
- CIOs and CTOs that don’t grasp the relevance of low-code will be replaced.
- Google’s entry to low-code will be a marketing circus without a robust technology supporting their offering.
- Offshore development as a service offering will go into terminal decline as low-code obviates the need for cheap resources.
- The financial ecosystem will start to fight the threat of blockchain and cryptocurrencies by developing innovative, mobile optimised, products and services.
- At least one major retail bank will announce closure of all high street branches, moving to a relationship based model to build brand.