Enterprise architects and low-code application platforms have a symbiotic relationship. Enterprise architects face a growing demand to reduce costs, increase flexibility, and regulate their technology environments. Their overarching mission is to keep business and technology tightly aligned.
At the same time, demand for new applications and a shortage of skilled developers equals a boon for the low-code application platforms (LCAPs) market. In fact, Gartner predicts low-code application development will be responsible for more than 65% of application development activity by 2024.
Indeed, this should come as no surprise. LCAPs are heavily present in today’s tech landscape. Salesforce and Microsoft are among two of the leading enterprise low-code application platforms, with new companies continuously vying for a piece of the market.
According to Gartner, the best way to achieve and maintain alignment is to focus on the application landscape. Identify new technologies and practices that build on the successes within your organization and lead to long-term goals. That’s why calculated evolution, not chaotic revolution, must be your path.
What are low-code application platforms?
According to Gartner, LCAPs support rapid application development, one-step deployment, execution and management using declarative, high-level programming abstractions, such as model-driven and metadata-based programming languages. LCAPs simplify the application development process by providing tools for designing application interfaces.
As the name suggests, it requires little coding. This means LCAPs are easily utilized without the need for IT assistance. Typically, they create metadata and interpret that metadata at runtime. For ease of use, underlying server infrastructure is abstracted.
- UI capabilities via responsive web and mobile apps
- Orchestration or choreography of pages, business process, and decision or business rules
- Built in database
- “One button” deployment of applications
With LCAPs, enterprise architects can better align their technology roadmap to short-term and long-term business goals. Do more without hiring additional employees or overwhelming current employees with lengthy processes.
LCAPs enable citizen developers.
With LCAPs, everyone can be a developer, given the right situation and enablement. LCAPs give IT a welcome reprieve by facilitating citizen developers. Citizen developers do not have extensive IT backgrounds, but are able to use LCAPs to generate new applications.
According to a Gartner survey, 41% of respondents have active citizen development initiatives. While 20% of those that do not have them, are either evaluating or plan to start citizen development initiatives soon. After all, citizen developers who are using LCAPs can build apps quicker. This frees up highly skilled developers to work on more intensive projects that drive value for the business. LCAPs spread out the workload and because there is little coding involved, less time will be spent on app testing and development. This speeds up time-to-value as well.
How to maximize the benefits of low-code.
In order to maximize the benefits of low-code, enterprise architects must:
- Categorize application use cases to identify those appropriate for low-code development, then select the right low-code tools. Choose low code for the use cases that require faster time to market with reduced developer skill sets.
- Experiment with low-coded development tools.
- Deploy low-code applications for external-facing apps on an opportunistic basis for business agility.
By doing the proper research and planning, enterprise architects can decide what LCAP is the best fit for their organization.
Introducing GT Software’s low code application, Ivory.
GT Software’s low code application platform, Ivory Suite, allows companies relying on mainframes to accelerate their pace of innovation through a drag and drop interface that does not require coding.
Ultimately, enterprise architects better align the business and technology goals of their company despite a skillset shortage. In fact, Ivory reduces labor requirements for new mainframe integrations 80-90%.
Click here to learn more about Ivory brings the mainframe into business strategy.
-Amanda Bierfeld Williams, Marketing Coordinator at GT Software