“No-code:” Every Developer’s Sworn Enemy?
Is “no-code” the future of IT? That’s exactly what Microsoft is betting. Decried by some developers, coding without writing a single line of code nevertheless experienced a real boom during the initial COVID-related confinement. To confront this crisis, companies, employees, craftsmen, freelancers, and many more have indeed used no-code/low-code (NCLC) tools to solve their digital challenges.
Can we really create new sites entirely without dealing with developers, for example? As far as the developers themselves, can they rely on this new technology in their daily functions?
Why adopt no-code/low-code
Let’s briefly recall the concepts of no-code and low-code. Making low-code/no-code consists in creating an application without coding (no-code) or with little code (low-code). Contrary to popular belief, these practices have already been used for a few years — notably via spreadsheets or mobile application generators. Naturally, with the digital boom, a new, more neophyte public has taken a close interest in the creation of apps and sites and has helped democratize NCLC platforms.
The obvious advantage for developers is that it relieves IT teams and reduces time-consuming tasks within the company. The time savings observed by the teams, once the various techniques have been adopted internally, are certain. Developers no longer have to manage a certain number of tasks, and this allows them to concentrate on larger-scale projects and deliver solutions that more closely meet customer expectations.
The Covid-19 crisis is a perfect example. Most companies have had to turn to increasingly digital solutions to address specific problems: teleworking employees, document dematerialization, secure storage and sharing of data… Having NCLC solutions in house allows employees to work more quickly and efficiently.
The no-code as a bonus for developers
No-code/low-code, the developer’s sworn enemy? Should we fear a future developers’ new computer technologies replacing traditional developer jobs? As has always been the case since the arrival of the Industrial Revolution, even if technology serves humans, we’re still the ones who exploit it. In fact, the limited functionalities of this tool appear to be the major drawback of NCLC. This is why starting a project with no-code/low-code tools can be dangerous: restrictions are numerous, and the ability to personalize is quite limited. For websites, this can mean an end result that is quite basic that doesn’t stand out from the crowd or offer a truly unique user experience.
In recent years, we’ve seen a spread of NCLC tools for the benefit of developers. With this new technology, developers can advance much faster on their various ongoing projects. By creating applications that can be manipulated visually (such as by clicking and dragging, or by moving blocks), developers offer teams a new way of getting projects done. For example, a marketing team can design the visuals of landing pages, create a blog/site to develop the community in the image of the box without having to go through a developer, allowing the latter to devote himself 100% to the main project. The work between the teams is facilitated. Employees have some of their tasks automated and gain in efficiency and productivity. Autonomy, time saving, boosted productivity: so many precious advantages for the company.
What are the notable impacts of the development of NCLC in the IT sector and on developers? It’s no secret that at nexten.io, we don’t believe in the disappearance of the developer at all. (You probably have figure that out just from reading this article!) No-code/low-code should be seen — at least by insiders — as a bonus for developers. The time savings is phenomenal when NCLC is applied throughout a work team, and productivity is boosted for all.
NCLC isn’t the Band-Aid for everything. It’s a tool with limited functionalities and as such is unable to precisely respond to all business needs. Moreover, NCLC tools should undoubtedly be handled by developers or people who know how to code since a development error can come suddenly and upend a project.
NCLC techniques are there to help developers create, produce, and deliver projects faster. No-code allows developers to spend more time each day on value-added tasks, and it offers more autonomy to teams. And even if these custom applications are more and more popular with novices because of their ease of access and digital-friendly use, developers remain the experts of their markets.