Make digital transformation happen with low and high code
Going digital is a surefire way for businesses to stay competitive in today’s economy.
Research shows that more than 5 billion people globally are now online, and each person will spend an average of 415.5 minutes – close to 7 hours – online each day in 2021, with 92.4 percent of users accessing the internet from their mobile phone . This makes building and distributing mobile apps a natural choice for companies that want to better connect with their employees and customers as they accelerate their digital transformation.
For example, to meet the evolving demands of Asia’s growing digital and mobile population, digital insurer FWD recently launched omne, a new mobile app designed to help people live their best lives through tools that promote micro-habits and achieve daily goals. Through data sharing with its ecosystem of partners and AI-powered data systems, omne has been engineered to deliver a unique app experience that is hyper-personalized to the individual user, changing how they feel about insurance.
Low code enables large-scale development and deployment
Low-code app development has been popular with businesses looking to roll out apps that meet their business needs, and for obvious reasons. With a rapidly evolving business environment where the main challenge is to market within the shortest possible time, speed, agility and quality technological innovations are at the heart of a successful digital transformation – a necessity for organizations to stay ahead. In fact, Gartner estimates that 75 percent of software solutions globally will be built on low code by 2024.
Using visual language instead of the usual textual coding languages, low-code development helps organizations modernize their apps quickly by providing tools that increase developer productivity through automation and reusability. This allows developers to focus on what matters most to the business, such as app stability and UX. For example, a major player in the Malaysian energy market delivered 16 new applications in 16 weeks with a team of four OutSystems developers and two junior developers using OutSystems.
At the same time, the use of low-code solutions in the organization solves the worldwide technology talent crisis. Low code allows developers skilled in the visual language to build applications for web and mobile channels, ensuring that scarce developer resources are used in the most efficient way.
Low code X High code
There is a mindset that low-code developers do not need to have a deep grasp of coding languages or be as competent as high-code developers, but this is not entirely true. Apps built by citizen developers, or developers without programming skills, are typically limited to simple use cases in terms of functionality and integrations, such as a single form or workflow.
In our practice, we have found that to develop apps that are robust, scalable and include complex logic, low-code developers need not only deep low-code knowledge, but the same strong programming foundations that high-code developers have. to fully utilize low code to its maximum potential. Low-code developers are expected to be well-versed in the entire stack, from database design to UI/UX execution. While it’s true that low code enables developers to build fast, transferable strong programming skills ensure that what is built is well designed and well executed.
However, low code does not work in silos. In an enterprise landscape, the typical low-code use cases tend to be custom-built applications ranging from enterprise apps, departmental workflows, and B2C engagement apps. However, there will be high-code, legacy and COT systems that will continue to co-exist with the low-code applications.
In any digital transformation journey, low-code developers work best as part of a multidisciplinary team consisting of project managers, functional consultants, UI/UX designers and high-code developers to ensure an accelerated and seamless transition for the business and its employees.
For best results with enterprise applications, low code can be supplemented with high code. A leading jewelery brand in Singapore adopted an inventory management system where the end-user application was built using low-code that interfaced with legacy, high-code systems. This ensures that the low-code developers can focus on delivering great end-user applications while the high-code developers work on the APIs that enable interaction with the legacy systems and thereby extend the life of the legacy systems without the need for a major rebuild.
Build low- and high-code apps for true digital transformation
Optimizing the right mix of low-code and high-code offers two benefits—the approach accelerates digital transformation and creates real impact while expanding opportunities for more workers to expand their digital skills.
At the same time, the lower barriers to entry to low-code development allow more employees (such as business users) to acquire more advanced digital knowledge as the organization doubles down on advanced digital tools.
Technical training programs for non-technical people are excellent for employees and graduates to prepare for the digital future ahead. For example, the “hire, place and train” training program, Step IT Up x Temus, prioritizes applicants without any prior knowledge of technology and provides trainees with in-demand digital skills. The Step IT Up curriculum has enabled over 1,000 people worldwide to secure technology roles at leading global companies. Through this program, Temus aims to nurture 400 digital talents in Singapore by 2025 to help businesses in Singapore and beyond unlock the value of digital transformation.
Low-code development is an extremely powerful tool for any organization looking to accelerate its digital transformation journey. The combination of low code and high code maximizes internal IT team productivity while empowering more employees in the organization to embrace and be part of the digital future.
Rahul Hukku and Stephen Yeo are Directors, Technology at Temus, a digital transformation company established by Temasek in strategic collaboration with UST.
Rahul is practice director at Temus, Temasek’s majority-owned digital transformation platform established in collaboration with the global IT service provider UST.
Rahul has over 20 years of experience in the design and delivery of digital transformation projects across global markets and industries.
Stephen is Director, Technology Modernization Center of Excellence, at Temus, based in Singapore. He is a pioneer in low-code technology in Singapore, with over 10 years of experience.
Stephen is passionate about using technologies to create value for businesses and has a solid track record
in designing and implementing business solutions that are creative, usable, robust and scalable, and which are used by both private and public customers.
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