A Guide to No-Code Application Development

The changes that take place in the world of IT are almost too fast to keep up with. But staying on top of each new development that enters the market can mean everything for businesses trying to stay ahead of the competition. The adoption of a new technology at the critical moment can make vast improvements to business processes and provide a much-needed competitive edge. Web development is becoming ever more accessible, and it can be transformative for businesses looking to modernise.

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What is no-code app development?

As the name suggests, no-code development allows users to build application software without needing to code. In the place of traditional programming, users of no-code platforms are able to create software through the user interface (UI) and configuration. This is mainly achieved through drag-and-drop tools to select and build the different parts of an application. It provides a visual way of putting website elements together without using any code.

No code development platforms are usually aimed at meeting the needs of business users, rather than those of traditional IT departments. No-code development is similar to low-code development, but the latter requires the user to have some knowledge of coding.

The benefits of no-code app development

Faster app development

When developing custom applications, developers need to build everything from the bottom up in a complex process. This involves writing code, building infrastructure and CD/CI pipelines that can take up valuable time and resources. Selecting the appropriate resources also takes time and expertise. One of the most attractive features of no-code development is that it can be handled by any employee and it is much easier and faster to learn. It is also simpler, so a great deal of time can be saved.

Reduce costs

In addition to saving time, no-code development can also be a sure-fire way of making financial savings in comparison to a traditional DevOps approach. Web development ordinarily involves specialised resources at different levels, as well as the need to hire front and back-end developers and various consultants and specialists. When using no-code application development, the difference between front end and back end is not relevant, nor is any underlying infrastructure. As fewer employees are needed and time can be saved, the costs are considerably lowered.

Concentrate on the app core

Without having to worry about any complex coding, no-code development allows users to directly focus on the requirements of an app. It is easy to build front-end user applications from rich templates that can be leveraged and customised. User interface and user experience do not need to be built from the ground up, so the extra time can be used to develop an incredible application experience.

Making organisations more self sufficient

When businesses can develop apps without any need to outsource the talent, there is less need for shadow IT which can bring greater risks. When development can be handled internally activities can be centrally governed, inefficiencies can be reduced, and potential security risks avoided. Citizen developers are more aware of the objectives, and the in-house IT department is able to become more involved in corporate issues, bringing business and IT together.

While no-code development limits the controls that developers have over their applications, it brings a range of benefits that vastly improve app development in business practice. It is able to simplify the process of app production and deliver it in an all-in-one platform. It brings app development to a wider range of people and delivers secure and high-quality enterprise-level applications.

No-code development platforms

There is a wide range of development platforms that offer both low-code and no-code capabilities. Some leading platforms include the following:

  • FlowForma - A company that provides Microsoft Office 365 with process automation tools uses SharePoint as a no-code platform. It involves the use of workflow, forms, decision making and document generation in the same location.
  • Airtable - A platform that promises to increase agility and drive innovation, running workflows and mission critical processes. Airtable is scalable and customisable, and it can be used for solving a wide range of use cases.
  • Salesforce - From the company better known for CRM, the no-code platform has tools for building apps that automate business processes quickly and efficiently. Developers can customise throughout with Lightning components.
  • Quick Base - A platform that helps businesses to create apps for making processes more efficient and productive. No technical training is required to create high-quality business apps.
  • Kintone - Allowing businesses to create workflows, databases and apps that automate processes, Kintone also has a selection of pre-built options for various use cases, such as project management, inventory management and CRM.
  • AppSheet - Used by 200,000 developers, including ESPN, Clearlink and Pepsi. AppSheet provides four different ways of building a no-code app.

No-code development is yet to become as familiar as content management systems, but given the rapid growth of the industry, it is only a matter of time before it becomes a commonly used term. Businesses would be well advised to adopt this technology and use it to their advantage, so we can be better prepared for the next evolution of app development.