Low-code software is being used on a large scale in various projects ranging from automation to helping users do their jobs faster and more consistently.
Stages of a Software Project
A software project can be categorized into four main stages. They are:
- Planning and designing
To better understand each stage and how it affects your work, let’s look at each in detail.
1. Planning and Designing
Of all the stages, this is the last stage that low code software will completely take over. This stage includes a major portion of the software project cycle, from getting the right stakeholders to making sure that there are sufficient resources and capital to check, build, and maintain the app in the correct manner.
For instance, suppose you work in the real-estate sector. You have your clients complaining that a lot of time is spent getting the documentation across. You can solve this issue in many ways. However, the way to solve the problem is to understand the source of the delay. Then, you will need to figure out the various ways you can minimize the delay. Such analysis won’t be handled by low-code software anytime soon.
This is the core of low code software development. You can build apps using low code software quickly once you have finalized the overall design of the app. One of the biggest advantages of using low code software at this stage of a software project is that low code software helps determine what is truly needed with the software. Businesses can repeatedly work on a solution to build the software that suits their needs instead of spending their time drafting and communicating about various aspects of the software.
When it comes to the deployment stage, each type of low code takes a different approach.
Businesses with RPA are building monolithic control centers. These centers handle the deployment and maintenance of software. Such an approach solves the deployment and maintenance issue but requires the use of different tools for deployment and maintenance purposes.
The tech giant, Microsoft, is building two views of low code apps. The first is a graphical user interface for business users. Second, a code-based interface that developers can use. This approach allows developers to deploy apps using the same git-based workflows that they are used to working on everywhere.
The other tech giants, Google and Amazon (AWS), haven’t figured out how they will solve this issue.
The outcome is that you will need to set some guidelines as to who should handle software deployment and how they should handle it. Once the guidelines are finalized and put in place, the low code platforms will help follow them. But the final responsibility rests with IT.
This is the most difficult stage to address. The maintenance stage involves fixing activities as well as ongoing enhancements. Most businesses are not capable of software maintenance. However, they need to be involved in the maintenance stage if they have built the application themselves. They are the only stakeholders that know how the application works from a business perspective.
In the future, we can see low code solutions handling this phase better. However according to chudovo.com, it is likely that a combined effort from software engineers and businesses will be required to manage software maintenance.
Things to Avoid
If you are working in a small or a medium-sized business as a software engineer and have good communication skills with business users, you have nothing to worry about. You will always find a way to add value to your company.
That being said, there are two major areas in which low code will have a significant impact on software engineers. You should, therefore, be cognizant of these if you work in one of these areas.
- Smaller companies or large companies comprising of a small tech team.
- Application development businesses
In small businesses, using low code software proves better than creating custom applications. We must look at it from the perspective of business leaders. For example, a CEO must decide between hiring a developer and using low code software to build custom apps. Choosing low code software is the obvious choice. Software engineers working in such companies are at risk of losing their jobs. They will either have to look for new jobs or transition to building low code apps.
It is predicted that the biggest and greatest job losses will happen in app development companies. Employees in the junior-rank categories rarely get opportunities to utilize their communication skills compared to a directly-employed enterprise software engineer.
If you are employed at one such company where there are dozens of other employees doing the same thing, it is time to enhance your communication and client-facing skills.
Is the rise of low code a threat to programmer jobs?
It is not strange that many programmers see the development of this technology as a threat to their careers. Many businesses are not turning to low-code platforms. In this article, we will talk about how companies can benefit from the low code and how this will impact the role of coders in a long way.
What low code is and how does it change the business landscape?
Basically, the low-code concept refers to the replacement of writing lines of code and syntax by visual modeling. It will allow you to focus your effort on the implementation of your core idea since this system automates time-consuming tasks that are repetitive with the development of standard features of an application.
How low code works?
Low-code platforms and apps are a set of tools that people can use with a drag-and-drop interface. In general, people can learn using these platforms through tutorials, guides, etc. They are taking much less time than a person will need for building an app on his own than it would be if he decides to learn to code. A person who develops software with low code is considered a citizen developer.
If you are wondering what are low-code platforms, we will list some examples. For instance, Salesforce, Shopify, Google App Maker, Microsoft Power Apps, Zoho, OutSystems, Mendix, and IBM Automation Platform are some of these platform types.
Let’s talk about the financial impact
In general, a low code is not beneficial for smaller businesses. This is because it can reduce the effort, work, and management costs of developers. On the other hand, all larger companies can only take advantage of this technology in order to improve and boost their engineering resources and get better results. All of this is possible and yet they will not have increased and accumulated legacy technology debt. For instance, Schneider Electric needed just 20 months to make 60 apps with low code that went on the market very quickly. Also, Royal BAM Group – a construction company adopted this low code technology, and the company benefit from it on many levels. They got cost-saving efficiencies in projects, win more tenders, and even deliver much faster than before.
What about implementation cost?
When it comes to implementation cost, most low-code platforms are SaaS. This means that people are paying only a subscription fee. In general, prices are varying from $25 per month to more than $5,000. This depends on the number of users, the features of the app, and the application that is working.
What are the limitations of low code?
Even though there are many benefits of low-code for business, it still has some disadvantages and weaknesses you should know about. There are some technical limitations as well as operational concerns.
When it comes to these limitations, we are going to talk about integration and customization. In general, even though low-code platforms are providing many integration opportunities, there are problems with ensuring the integrity of the application. Since the app develops further and third-party tools emerge, you are going to need someone who can ensure integrity. Besides that, if you want improved flexibility with the app including adding different features and patterns, you will need to go beyond the low code capabilities.
Reliably and security can be one of the operational issues. When you use an app that is built on a third-party platform, you do not own the code. Therefore, if they decide to make some changes to secure the codebase, you can not do anything about it. However, some top providers such as IBM, Microsoft, and Google will have enough engineering resources to provide high-security measures. Another issue can be referred to as dependency. When you can already have a low-code platform, you are basically tied to it. In case your requirements and needs are changed, you will not be able to migrate to another platform.