What Are No-Code Platforms and Why Are They So Popular?

So you’re getting ready to kick off a new and exciting project, but the actual management piece of it isn’t quite as new or exciting.

Trust us, we’ve been there-your project management process involves chasing down project stakeholders, losing files left and right, and having too many things on too many platforms. We’d opt for the word stressful over new or exciting.

If we had it our way, we’d put some pep in your project management step by creating a platform that’s completely customizable to your business needs. Did we mention the part where you wouldn’t have to write any code or hire a software developer?

Good news — not only did we have it our way ( and create that kind of platform for you), but there’s an entire industry out there dedicated to making your project management process easier than ever.

Two words: No-Code Platforms.

What Are No-Code Platforms?

No-code platforms are application development platforms that can be built and customized with zero programming experience. They allow you to create custom workflow and data management processes to effectively manage, track, and complete projects just the way you want. Instead of merely wishing your project management platform has tailor-made features such as specific steps, hand-offs, or reminders, you can simply build them into your platform yourself.

An example of how users can build custom business applications code-free with Kintone’s drag-and-drop interface.

Traditionally, the process for creating a custom platform would look something like this:

  1. You need a project management tool tailored to your business needs
  2. You reach out to a software developer and tell them what you want customized
  3. They create a custom platform and send it to you for testing
  4. You test it out and send it back to them for tweaks and updates
  5. They make those updates and send the platform back to you for testing

And then you continuously repeat steps 4 and 5 until you have a perfect platform, which can take months to build. According to Sol Tech, the average custom software project takes 4 to 9 months to build.

Some businesses have tried to ditch this traditional time-consuming process by using different platforms for different processes and projects. This could look like using Google Docs for document sharing, Slack for daily communication, and Outlook for meetings and emails. However, hacking together various platforms doesn’t totally solve your project management problems, but rather puts a small band-aid over them. The launch might be shorter than traditional software methods, but your processes remain needlessly convoluted with all the extra context switching and copy/paste data sharing between apps.

No-code platforms allow you to replace your software developer in this process since they often feature drag-and-drop interfaces that are easy for anybody to use. They also allow you to centralize your different workflows on one platform versus multiple platforms, due to their highly customizable features. Before you know it, you can build out a custom project management process from start to finish on one central platform.

What Should I Know About Them?

The ability to build highly customizable solutions without the need for a software developer has launched a whole new industry, one that isn’t going anywhere any time soon.

Let’s talk revenue and growth.

According to Emergen Research, the global no-code development platforms market size reached a whopping 12.17 billion U.S. dollars in 2020 and is expected to register a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 24.2% during its next forecast period due to the increasing need for improved productivity and faster application deployments. By 2030, the market is expected to produce $187 billion in revenue, accounting for more than 65% of application development activity by 2024.

No-code platforms’ growth rate and market value haven’t gone unnoticed either. Companies in technology and beyond are beginning to acquire no-code start-up companies left and right to get ahead of the game. Even retail giant Walmart wants a piece of the no-code platform pie, announcing plans to acquire technology assets from tech start-up Botmack in late 2021.

The value is loud and clear to Venture Capitalists as well, with investment into low-code/no-code (LCNC) platforms increasing five folds year on year in 2021. According to Varindia, “Venture Capitals seemingly consider LCNC technologies as part of their core investment strategy”.

It’s looking like no-code is kind of a big deal. But what exactly is making them so popular? Why the sudden buzz?

Why Are They So Popular?

They’re Agile

We mentioned earlier that business development software traditionally starts with a software developer, with whom you go back and forth for up to months at a time to get your platform just right.

No-code eliminates the developer because the end user is often the one designing the custom solution. In other words, you’re often the one designing your own project management platform. This means you’re able to deliver and implement your own feedback versus going back and forth with a software developer, creating more time for your team and allowing projects to be delivered in a faster, stress-free manner.

All of this is what makes no-codes extremely Agile, which according to Atlassian, is defined as “an approach to project management and software development that helps teams deliver value to their customers faster and with fewer headaches”.

They’re Customizable

No-code platforms can be used to create highly custom processes and business solutions without needing to know a single thing about coding, and are designed to be used by a variety of people from various backgrounds and professions. All teams across your organization, including marketing, sales, or finance, have the ability to create ways of working that are unique to them.

When your teams go to build out their personalized platforms, they each have the ability to address their individual business needs. For example, let’s say your finance team needs an expense reporting feature, but your sales team needs a customer relationship management feature. Instead of buying two separate software solutions for each team’s unique needs, a no-code platform would allow you to build out a custom process for each team that both exist on the same platform.

Having one highly customizable platform not only saves your organization time and money by eliminating the need for multiple platforms, but provides endless possibilities when it comes to personalization, integrations, and automation.

They’re Visible

Visibility is the key to long-term success when it comes to streamlining your workflows and improving your processes. It’s always possible to successfully complete a project, but getting there won’t be enjoyable if your files are scattered, you’re chasing people down, and your software is limiting your workflow.

No-code platforms let you oversee every step of a workflow, letting you easily identify where files are, when deadlines are, and what steps could use some improvement. When you have this kind of visibility, you have the power to make your processes better instead of struggling to see where things are going wrong. As a result, you achieve a faster, more efficient working experience.

Conclusion

Now that you’re walking away with more knowledge on no-code platforms, it’s easy to see how adopting a no-code platform could transform your business-Agile, customizable, and visible are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the trailblazing traits that no-code platforms hold.

If your current project management platform could use a pick-me-up, a no-code platform could be a step in the right direction for you, your team, and the future of business development technology.

Want to learn more about how no-code can transform the way you get and use custom software? Download our free eBook, We’re All Developers Now: Why The Next Programmer Joining Your Company Is You.

This eBook will show you:

  1. Why software will continue to consume the workplace and play a growing role in our work lives
  2. Why developing and maintaining software will be a critical part of all our jobs
  3. How your current knowledge plus the power of no-code will make you more capable than ever

Originally published at https://blog.kintone.com.

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