NO-CODE ULTIMATE GUIDE

An introduction to No-code Application development


IF you are an IT developer, have you ever been stuck in the situation where you feel extremely busy but still can never complete all the requirements from internal business department?

Whether it’s new implementation or fixing errors in existing applications, there’s bound to be a lot of backlogs 

that take weeks or months to finish. By the time you finish those, more requests are ready in the queue. It’s a never-ending, vicious cycle.

Have you ever imagined breaking that cycle and handing the develop tools to the business department without coding?

It’s time for you to enter no-code development. You’ve probably heard this term being thrown around, and it sounds promising. But does it really make that much of a difference? Can it really make life smoother for you and your department staff?

What is No-Code Development? And what is the real no code?

 

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What is No-Code Development?

 

No-code platforms enable application development with no manual programming required. Instead of coding, these platforms use visual modeling, where users can drag-and-drop components into logical sequences to create functional applications.

The so-called low code or no code development, it is not groundless. There’s been a growing requirement for developers since the start of the information age. One of the main reasons is that it is not driven by technology but by the market.

 

code vs no code

 

No-code platforms can speed development up to 16 times faster, depending on the platform. This enables developers to quickly create working prototypes, and significantly reduce the time to applications development. Because of the speed of development and ease of use, no-code platforms align the business and IT by making it possible for business users to contribute directly, rather than waiting for an idea to have its turn on IT’s long backlog.

In an increasingly competitive environment, enterprises are smarter, supply chains are more complex, and business and technology connections are becoming closer; in this context, it is vital to focus on end-to-end business process optimization.

This optimization must be carried out at an unprecedented scale and speed. If you do not try to seek technical assistance, it is quite brutal. All these elements make no-code app builder a strategic need.

From one-off solutions to extremely  complex enterprise  grade applications, no-code is proving to be a widely adopted method in organizations’ IT strategies.

 

What no code platform can solve in real business?

 

When do you need a no code platform? let’s look at the real business situation.

For companies, if they want to develop an application at the lowest cost and the fastest speed, what they need is at least 3-5 people, 3-6 months, a budget of hundreds or thousands of dollars, not to mention the later maintenance or changes.

For individual product managers or designers, even if they have very good ideas, they often suffer from having no team, no funds, and no coding ability and finally have no choice but to give up.

In this context, the No Code field has emerged and has risen rapidly, and it has solved many pain points for people.

 

When speed and efficiency take precedence

Some simple cases can be solved in a no-code way. No code platforms cannot replace experienced developers, but with the help of which, developers can focus on higher-level things.

If the company is adopting a software that is not easy to use, developers should stand by all the time, and the function of which can't keep up with business development. Then, using a no code software can be said to be a very good choice.

No matter how experienced developers are, through no code way to achieve, from the idea to the realization, can save dozens of times and can improve efficiency greatly.

 

When development tasks pile up

A no code development platform will be a powerful assistant for both the IT department and the business department.

There are many small size enterprises that do not have mature IT departments. Some simple operation and maintenance of digital information is assigned to a fixed person and the system that the company needed is still handed over to the third-party software company.

However, once there is a new demand, you need to contact the software provider for secondary development. The cost of money and time are a large expenditure. Therefore, through the no code platform such as Yeeflow, business needs can be satisfied and the pressure on IT will be reduced.

 

no code app builder

 

What are the advantages of adopting a no code platform?

 

In order to appreciate all the benefits that no-code platforms have to offer, let’s look closer at the technology’s place within the larger scope of digital transformation.

Examples of digital transformation include moving from paper-based to digital processes, migrating to the cloud, embracing artificial intelligence and machine learning, and making data more actionable and accessible. Digital transformation has huge potential which can be applied to all areas of an enterprise.

Agility is a core tenant of digital transformation. No-code development streamlines software development by decoupling IT from the process and putting it into the hands of “citizen developers,” or non-technical workers.

 

Better Agility

Because no-code web application development is built visually using pre-built modules, it’s faster to build apps. That allows your organization to be that much agile. This is not just less coding, but the testing process is also automated. This lets you cut down the time spent on app development and start working, rather than preparing to work.

 

Reduced Cost

Developers are expensive. Talented developers even more so. No-code solutions give you a way to bypass that. It takes away a lot of the overhead cost that comes with requiring a skilled team of developers on staff all the time. Also, because you can build apps that much faster, it becomes cheaper in the long run.

 

More Productivity

This is what you’re interested in. Agile organizations and reduced costs mean nothing if you’re not actually getting any work done. Since these no-code apps can be built at a much faster pace, the IT staff aren’t overloaded with requests from every other department. In turn, fewer people are waiting for you so they can get their work done. They’re already making their own apps and working. What used to take months, or even years, can now be done in a matter of hours and days.

 

Easily Changeable

With traditional hand coding, the problem is that you can’t really change a functionality or a feature at the drop of a hat. Especially when the coding language is foreign to you. A no-code development platform is an exact opposite. If you need to change something in an app you’ve developed, all it takes is the new logic, and you can implement the change in a matter of hours.

 

Improved security

Creating apps with custom code can lead to a variety of security issues. Apps are notoriously difficult to secure, with 86 percent of tested apps containing one or more session management vulnerabilities and 59 percent having one or more input validation errors.

When leveraging a no-code platform, you can rest assured that all of your apps will have strong foundational security elements in place — like industry-standard security protocols, practices to ensure your data is secure, and built-in mechanisms to prevent unauthorized users from seeing sensitive data. No-code apps also contain guardrails set by administrators or IT departments so that users don’t break compliance guidelines.

 

Interested in getting started with no-code development?

 

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No-code Development Does Work in the Real World

 

As enterprises seek to respond quickly to customer needs and break the model of long development cycles, “low-code” or “no-code” software platforms are growing in influence. What a few years ago may have required months (or years) of hard-coding by seasoned developers will soon be the matter of only a few mouse-clicks by “citizen developers” that don’t know a lick of code language. For the tech industry that largely has been driven by software development teams, the rise of no-code means a fundamental change in what constitutes a “developer” and how all businesses and employees operate.  After being aware of this trend and discovering these advantages, many companies are putting their eggs into its basket. It’s not the snake oil that we’re all so worried it could be. Here are a few examples.

 

The no-code landscape is attracting a lot of interest and is growing year on year. Check out this trend line:

 

no code trend

 

Zurich

Zurich Financial used to use Excel sheets for CPQ (Configure, Price, Quote). This is was slow, manual, and very cumbersome. Using a no-code app development platform, they were able to create a web app that automatically does this for them. It even lowered the manual overhead when they had to add new product lines and update prices.

Here’s the best part. They didn’t spend millions of dollars on a custom solution, and they didn’t even throw away the spreadsheets that they were using. They retained all their data, without zero loss whatsoever.

 

General Electric

Before no-code development platforms came along, GE was using a manual, multiple-step proposal generation process for internal work. It was costing them way too much time. With no-code development tools, they were able to create a simplified web app that not only simplified and automated proposal generation, but they were able to add scenario modeling into the app as well.

 

PNC Banking

PNC is committed to providing various financial services to individuals, small businesses, groups, and government entities within the United States. They successfully reduced employee turnover rate and improved employee efficiency by adopting no code BPM.

The problem they are facing is employee on-boarding: because new employees need to spend 5 weeks.

In order to become familiar with services, systems and equipment, so PNC has identified opportunities that allow employees to increase productivity more quickly while reducing employee turnover rate.

 The reason for choosing no-code BPM technology (originally from Lombardi) is that PNC sees the power of workflow automation which reduces delays in existing processes while also providing a way to integrate process work with existing systems.

Using a no-code BPM software, they were able to create their own internal app store to accumulate apps that they could verify, and have custom apps that were built by their own staff.

 

What platform you can choose from?

 

There are hundreds of no-code tools available, some are free while some are expensive. They also serve tons of different purposes, from 3rd party integrations to building web applications and more. Here the author will focus more on the tools which can help you build apps and do the business management.

 

Yeeflow

Yeeflow is a SaaS and bpm tool that allows user to create apps that convert their manual processes into automated and digital processes, which is easy to learn without the need for any prior coding experience. It also allows businesses to securely create, share and connect their apps and external data sources with anyone on any device within a matter of minutes.

With the integration with Microsoft Teams, you can create forms and apps right in your Microsoft Teams and transform conversations into structured work.

If you’re looking for workflow automation, business process management or an APP builder, Yeeflow offers you an all-in-one solution for all your requirements.

 

Yeeflow dashboard

 

AppSheet

AppSheet provides a nocode development platform for application software, which allows users to create mobile, tablet, and web applications using data sources like Google Drive, DropBox, Office 365 and other cloud- based spreadsheet and database platforms. It was acquired by Google in January 2020. The platform can be utilized for a broad set of business use cases including project management, customer relationship management, field inspections, and personalized reporting.

The whole process can be described as follow.  First, users will need a business spreadsheet (Excel, Smartsheet, Google Sheets etc.). Second, users will need a cloud storage provider (Google Drive, Dropbox, Microsoft OneDrive & Office 365, Box etc.). Third, users use AppSheet’s App Editor to add features to their app based upon an application structure related to different predefined industry use case templates (hospitality, retail, manufacturing, non-profit, education, construction, sales, property and so on)… and the software itself ingests the data from the business spreadsheet in order to process the information it contains and so build the app itself. Fourthly and finally, business users deploy the app to a chosen mobile device.

 

Airtable

Airtable is a spreadsheet-database hybrid and is often referred to as a management app due to its productivity features. Airtable gives you the functionality of a database, with the UI of a spreadsheet, which is excellent for beginners.

Airtable is online and allows you to collaborate with your colleagues, which makes communication easier. From a database perspective, Airtable is simple to use and offers many integrations with other platforms. All-in-all Airtable is an excellent platform for building database-focused internal tools. It also benefits from a popular template marketplace called Universe, which is incredibly helpful.

Airtable is free to use until you hit 1,200 records. The free tier is also limited to 2GB of attachment space and two weeks of history. The next tier up is the plus tier and will cost you $20/user/month. With this tier, you can benefit from 5,000 records, 5GB attachment space, and six months of history.

 

Zoho Creator

Zoho Creator is a cloud software to create custom applications on your own without any prior coding experience or IT expertise. Zoho Creator's drag-and-drop interface enables you to create custom business applications in days rather than weeks. You can collect data, automate business processes or workflows, analyze the data in reports, and collaborate with your application users.

Zoho’s tool has earned a reputation as one of the best on the market, and the reasons are clear–it has nearly everything you could want from a no-code development platform. Zoho Creator’s array of features is tweaked to cater to the end user, providing a development experience rivaled by few others.

Data security is a feature Creator prides itself on-it has extensive features for sharing and protecting your data, even within your own organization. When it comes to pricing, Zoho Creator basic plans range from $10 to $35 per user.

 

Check point you should pay attention to while selecting a no-code product

 

Once you have a clear vision of where your organization is and where it wants to go, it is time to evaluate potential no-code solutions to get you there. The following are factors to consider of the various tools:

 

Does it have a free trial?

A free trial lets you test the product and see if it’s a fit for your organization, without having to make a purchase beforehand. If a product doesn’t have a free trial, ask the vendor about it.

 

Does it require significant training for your staff?

The best no-code app builders will be easy to use. If you find something that’s a lot more difficult than you bargained for, it’s best to look elsewhere.

 

Can your staff collaborate on a single project?

Staff can have different ideas for a single implementation, and collaboration is the best way to ensure everyone works on the project, without having to send and receive data.

 

Is it on the cloud?

Having it on the cloud means you don’t have to waste resources installing it on your devices. You won’t need to worry about data loss and backups.

 

Is it scalable?

The no-code platform should be able to scale up with the growth of your organization. If you find that the platform cannot incorporate more people as you grow or requires you to purchase expensive bundles of users to do so, then it’s best to leave it and find something else.

Choosing the right business process management software can enable process improvement efforts throughout your organization. But you must select the right tool to address your organizational needs. Carefully evaluate your options before committing significant resources to one solution.

 

Conclusion

The signs that no code platforms are here to stay are clear. There aren’t enough software engineers to meet demand. Business cycles are moving faster than ever. And there’s a greater need than ever for customized business applications. There are equally as many signs that manufacturers can benefit from no code platforms.

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