The era of software as a service (SaaS) is upon us. Organizations of all types are turning to SaaS solutions to streamline their operations, reduce costs, and strengthen their security practices. To make this transition easier on small businesses, some vendors have created low-code platforms to assist in automating business processes so that they can focus on growing their companies instead.
After all, why struggle with writing code when you can let a system handle it for you? Fortunately, not every vendor has the same level of complexity in their low-code products. That’s why we decided to highlight eight factors you should consider before making your final decision.
Differentiate Low Code and No Code
While low-code and no-code are both types of workflow software, they each serve different purposes. With low-code workflow software, you’re looking to build custom web pages without the need to write any code. This is a great choice for those who are starting and don’t have the technical skills required to create complex websites.
On the other hand, no-code workflow software allows users to create fully functioning sites without ever writing code. No-code workflow software is great for those who are looking to expand their business by creating an online presence.
What Does a Low-code Automation Platform Do?
Low-code platforms let you develop a variety of applications using a visual drag-and-drop design tool and a library of preset business processes. This gives you a set of building blocks to build your software without having to write any code whatsoever. Low-code tools can be used to create an application that enables employees to complete routine tasks, like onboarding new hires, or custom applications that require more complicated workflows, like hiring managers requesting time off.
To use a low-code platform, you create a user interface by dragging components onto a canvas and connecting them with connectors. Then, you connect this canvas to your application by adding business rules, like when an employee should be able to approve time off. The most common components include forms, charts, calendars, calculators, lists, and libraries.
Essential Features of a Low Code Automation Platform
Drag-And-Drop User Interface
A low-code tool’s visual design tool allows users to drag and drop components onto a canvas, connect them with connectors, and add business rules, like when an employee should be able to approve time off.
A low-code platform allows users to build their user interface by dragging components onto a canvas and connecting them with connectors. This canvas provides the context of the components in the interface and also allows users to add business rules, like when an employee should be able to approve time off.
A low-code tool’s model-based development lets users create custom business applications without writing code. The model is built using frameworks, like SQL, which lets the software store data and retrieve it from other applications and databases. With this model, the software performs business functions without having to understand the technical details of how the functions work.
A low-code tool lets users create templates that can be shared with other users, like a hiring template or a time of approval template. This saves time and effort because other users don’t have to build these templates from scratch.
Low-code tools let you create applications that support a wide range of devices, including web browsers, mobile apps, and embedded systems. This lets you create an application that works on multiple devices, like a low-code application that handles HR duties across an organization.
Better Scalability And Security
A low-code platform lets you scale your application while maintaining its security. This allows organizations to scale their application as they grow while keeping user access and data safe. Low-code platforms have been around for several years, so they generally have a lot of experience in the market. The vendors generally have a proven track record, so you can expect your investment to yield results. Therefore, it’s best to go for a vendor that has been around for a few years, preferably one that has been around for at least a decade.
Questions to Ask Yourself
What Do You Want to Achieve?
The first thing you should consider before buying a low-code solution is what you want to achieve with it. In particular, you should be sure to outline specific goals for your organization and determine how low-code can help you meet those goals. For instance, if you want to reduce the time it takes to complete business tasks, then you’ll likely get the most value out of a solution that makes it easier to automate your processes. Likewise, if you want to improve collaboration between team members, then you might consider choosing a low-code platform that offers user experience (UX) enhancements.
How Much Do You Spend?
Next, you’ll want to calculate how much you’ll have to spend on your new low-code solution. There may be upfront costs, but then you’ll simply have to pay a monthly subscription fee to use it. The good news is that there are a variety of low-code platforms to choose from, so you may be able to find one that fits within your budget.
How Easy is it to Learn And Implement?
Next, you’ll want to assess how easy it is to learn and implement your low-code solution. If the vendor offers a clear, easy-to-understand training process, then you can expect to learn the product quickly. Moreover, you’ll want to see how easy it is to install and configure. Ideally, you want to be able to create a new app in less than a day, and you don’t want to have to hire an IT team to do so.
How Many People Will Be Able to Use It?
Finally, you’ll want to assess how many people will be able to use it. Ideally, your low-code solution can handle up to a certain number of users. Although this may require some technical support, it’s worth noting that larger organizations may already have someone on staff who can help. If not, you may have to hire an outside consultant or outsource the task.
Fortunately, larger low-code vendors often have partnerships with third-party service providers, so you may be able to find a solution that fits within your budget.
Does the Vendor Maintain Support for Future Releases?
Finally, you’ll want to determine whether the vendor maintains support for future releases. Sometimes, low-code platforms only come with one major version at a time. In this case, the vendor may not be able to provide you with security updates as they come along. If this is something you’d like to avoid, then it might be a good idea to look elsewhere.
The Key Takeaways
Low-code platforms let you build scalable, low-code applications without writing code. You can create custom applications without understanding the technical details of how the functions work and scale your application as your business grows. Low-code platforms excel when you want to automate everyday tasks without writing code.
For a smooth and effective transition to low-code automation platforms, you need to choose the right vendor. This means understanding what they can deliver, what they’re missing, and how they compare to the competitors.
When choosing a low-code platform, you’ll want to keep in mind what you hope to achieve with the solution. That way, you can choose a low-code solution that best fits your specific needs. Next, you’ll want to calculate how much you’ll have to spend on your new low-code solution. Keep in mind that there are a variety of low-code solutions to choose from, so you may be able to find one that fits within your budget. Finally, you’ll want to determine how easy it is to learn and implement your low-code solution.
Articles You Might Want To Read: