Embracing AI as part of a low-code strategy will be the next step organizations can take to harness its power and achieve the desired outcomes.
Low-code development has established itself as a powerful tool that allows organizations to build applications quickly and efficiently, enabling users of all skill levels to create and automate workflows, rules, and app components. The benefits at this stage are undeniable: it’s provided tremendous opportunities for non-technical employees to contribute to significant innovation within their organizations and freed up IT teams to focus on more complex projects.
For anyone already using low-code, this is no big revelation – low-code has changed how we develop software, and it’s here to stay. And now that low code has established itself as a relatively permanent fixture in most enterprises, we need to consider accelerating more pervasive adoption while helping elevate the technology to the next level of innovation. That’s where artificial intelligence comes in. When implemented correctly in tandem with low code, AI can drive further adoption and innovation across an organization, resulting in better outcomes than was ever possible.
Low-Code Has Become Table Stakes…Now What?
The rise of low code development can be attributed to the ongoing shortage of highly skilled IT workers and the increasing demand for faster app development with the need for inbuilt app agility. Gartner predicts that by 2024, non-technology professionals will build 80% of technology products and services. Low code is no longer a buzzy technology – it’s become the norm. And while many organizations that have adopted low-code technology believe that’s enough for innovation, they’re not always considering the potential issues down the line. As more people have access to development tools along with the ability to push their self-made apps live, it is imperative that organizations put the guardrails in place to ensure everyone is using these tools for the greater good – both for the company and the customers they serve.
Unchecked low code development poses serious risks that can have far-reaching consequences for organizations, such as the possibility of downtime from either unintentional errors or intentional misuse or apps with vulnerabilities that hackers can exploit, potentially resulting in data breaches, regulatory fines, legal implications, and many other headaches. Without proper oversight and governance, low code development can become a breeding ground for non-compliant applications that violate industry regulations. However, new technologies such as AI have proven to be critical partners in any low-code strategy, helping to achieve consistent and successful outcomes.
Embracing a Cautious Mentality
Establishing guidelines, policies, and training programs that promote best practices and ensure compliance is crucial. Companies must create guardrails that prevent low code development from becoming the “Wild West” of app development. Organizations can define and enforce the necessary guardrails to maintain compliance with internal policies and external regulations by implementing proper governance and infusing AI-powered guidance into existing systems. This includes pre-programming guardrails into templates that citizen developers can use and offering tools such as AI assistants to help answer questions along the development process, improving efficiency while also helping to ensure that they build applications that align with the organization’s standards and requirements.
With low code’s ability to enable repeatable processes and workflows, organizations can ensure that the applications built in this environment provide consistent and high-quality experiences for end users with low-to-no risk. By standardizing guardrails across the business and ensuring AI systems are being fed that data to help enforce these guardrails and rules throughout the development process, organizations protect themselves from costly mistakes and ensure that the apps function as intended, even further reducing the burden on IT teams, and preventing user frustration.
AI and Low-code – A Perfect Pairing
Generative AI is arguably the hottest tech out there right now, and for good reason. We’ve seen some very forward-thinking use cases that have the potential to transform the way we do business. But because some of what’s being discussed aren’t accessible just yet, companies need to be able to sift out the AI that can practically be applied to help them become more efficient and effective company today and into the future. One of those examples is pairing AI with low code to infuse AI into the development process automatically and, ultimately, the apps your business is building.
The right AI helps enhance the work humans are doing – in this case, when it comes to low-code app development – to serve as a co-pilot during the development process to help ensure the best-finished product. With AI-powered guidance, organizations can feel confident that the apps their employees are building – no matter what skill level – are compliant, functional, and benefit the business.
For example, a citizen developer can ask a generative AI service how to begin creating an app to help their team do a particular task and, in turn, be given an answer that provides step-by-step guidance to create that app. AI helps guide a developer – regardless of skill level – so that they can quickly and easily build a functioning app that is also compliant. This can reduce development time to minutes or hours versus days or weeks. AI can provide the speed, guidance, and guardrails while the human successfully builds the app to help deliver results fast and with far less worry than the previously mentioned wild west of app development that low-code platforms have the potential to create.
Low-code has proven itself and firmly established itself as the future for how applications are built – it’s time to elevate low-code with AI so organizations can maximize the benefits they can glean from the technology. With inbuilt cautionary guardrails and oversight, businesses can maximize the potential of low-code development for faster innovation that benefits both employees and customers. Embracing AI as part of a low-code strategy will be the next step organizations can take to harness its power and achieve the desired outcomes.