If you don’t take the lead on low code/no code, your employees might
During VentureBeat’s latest Low-Code/No-Code Summit, ServiceNow CDIO Chris Bedi and ServiceNow App Engine GM/VP Marcus Torres discussed how organizations can successfully build, scale and manage low-code applications while keeping them simple for everyday use. employees. One thing is for sure: low code/no code will get you nowhere, and companies need to be prepared.
Gartner predicts that by 2024, 65% of all app development will be done via low code. That’s because the demand for digital transformation is increasing, and organizations need to find a way to keep up and stay competitive.
“IDC has a statistic out there that says 750 million new apps need to be built by 2025,” Bedi said. “Centralized technology organizations won’t be able to manage it. The developer capacity of software engineers – that’s a limitation on digital transformation. And low-code, no-code development is an unlocking of that limitation because the demand to automate more, increase efficiency, increase productivity, create experiences to serve your customers and talent – the demand has never been higher.”
In the new era of digital transformation and the new era of work, development is a team sport, bringing together the citizen developer and the traditional developers, said Torres.
“When you get that, what do you create? You actually create teamwork,” he said. “You create context across different industries, and that also helps your business scale. The only way we can do that is to provide a amazing experience that allows people to easily learn, easily use, easily innovate and then continue to scale, but scale in a way that really benefits the whole business.”
For example, companies like Bayer are streamlining the complexities of compliance and legal to provide employees and business teams with a single, seamless experience, Torres said. The app they developed using ServiceNow’s technology, the Now platform and App Engine generated over 30,000 requests for compliance and legal teams to handle with automation at a rate of around 80%.
“Of those 30,000, 24,000 don’t require intervention and it just happens,” he explained. “That’s how the world works, and that’s how we really want to see all our customers going forward.”
Another customer, Avant Health, unleashed a team of resident developers to innovate, creating more than 80 apps, increasing their overall development capacity by 40%.
Launches a citizen development initiative
A formal citizen development initiative is essential, Bedi added, for several reasons. First, talent in today’s workforce doesn’t want to wait in line for a centralized technology organization to fix nagging problems, and companies need to empower talent to digitize their own work. Second, citizen-developer-traditional developer partnership is essential to drive modern business outcomes and accelerate their digital transformation.
And third, if left unchecked and in the hands of an employee who has learned about low- and no-code citizen development programs, individual apps for individual teams will proliferate, slowing the pace of innovation and hindering growth. In other words, shadow IT, which breaks down a company’s ability to scale.
“That’s the real risk of not doing anything about a low-code initiative because people don’t want to stand in line. People have options,” Torres said. “They can go to a website, swipe a credit card and join the races, but at the end of the day, development is not the biggest cost of developing applications. That’s the maintenance. It is the support over time.”
“You can try to block it and say, no, it’s too risky for us,” Bedi added. “It’s a losing strategy because employees will find a way to get things done because they have to get things done.”
They encourage organizations to partner with citizen developers, create the right development and innovation framework, and put railings and governance in place so that these developers build the right way with the right visibility and the right model to scale and support over time.
“That’s how you get the capacity to scale and, most importantly, the agility the business needs,” Torres said. “Nobody wants to stand in line because as a business owner, as a manager, as a worker I just need to get certain things done and I can’t wait in line because that’s how I support our customers and they can’t wait either.”
“Organizations need to embrace it, and those that do will start to see their digital transformation accelerate and their employees become happier,” he added.