Low-Code Platform Wave Maker - How Low Can You Go?

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Apr 15, 2016
9 Min Read
Low-Code Platform Wave Maker - How Low Can You Go

Low-Code Platform Wave Maker - How Low Can You Go

While a select group of vendors are riding the Forrester Wave for low-code development platforms, ROI gains by customers embracing a Citizen Development approach are the Big Kahunas...

It’s been another big week for QuickBase and our customers as we have been placed as a Contender in the inaugural Forrester Wave: Low-Code Development Platforms, Q2 2016. Yesterday’s blog article discussed in detail what this validation means for QuickBase and our customers.

Forrester Low-Code Wave - Unlocking the Value

Perhaps even more compelling, we also just released a new study, commissioned by Forrester titled, Total Economic Impact Study for QuickBase, a Low-Code Platform for Citizen Development. We believe this study acts as a great companion piece for anyone reading the new Forrester Low-Code Wave and looking to dive deeper into the ROI of low-code platforms. QuickBase is the only true Citizen Development platform in the Wave and Forrester has reported that our customers can achieve a 260% ROI and a payback period of just 6 months based on our unique approach of empowering non-developers.

But a key question in this somewhat fragmented market landscape remains. Exactly how low can your platform go from a skills perspective to unlock the value offered by true no-code Citizen Developers.

For QuickBase, Forrester has placed QuickBase in the specific market segment identified with “the greatest potential to empower non-developers.”[i]

Forrester goes on in the Wave to state that “QuickBase has attracted more than 6,000 customers based on its strengths as a platform for ‘citizen developers.’” At first glance, this may not seem like an important distinction, but Forrester’s Total Economic Impact study of QuickBase confirms that many of the key ROI drivers are directly attributable to the disruptive power of activating these “non-developers” in the app creation and maintenance process. It also doesn’t hurt that they are typically much more widely available and lower cost on average than a Pro Developer.

Let’s take a deeper look at the cause and effect relationship between ROI and the low-code platform segment aimed at Citizen Development:

We talk a lot about how QuickBase has innovated our user experience to drive adoption of non-developer business users. But what are some good examples of the disruptive innovative features QuickBase built into the platform to unlock this incremental ROI beyond what the “Coder” segment of this market can provide?

  • Automated Design Layouts: QuickBase automates the process of creating a responsive user experience. It’s low-code enough so the app builder doesn't have to be a UX designer to build an omnichannel "pixel perfect" app, so Citizen Developers don't spend hours fixing the pixels accelerating time to value by automatically creating intuitive basic applications around existing data. (example QuickBase capabilities: HTML5 design auto-generated upon creation of apps)
  • All Developer Business Logic Creation: QuickBase offers tooling specifically designed for all levels of developers that removes complexities so the app builder only needs to focus on defining business rules, expressions and logic. (example QuickBase capabilities: Excel-like formula creation; Form Rules;  Automatic cascading of changes so if a user changes a field name, formulae rules or logic flow through the app)
  • Scalable, Fine Grained Permissions/Access Controls: QuickBase offers a built-in database allowing app builders and owners separate access and control permissions (from admins) without needing to worry about things like database configurations and query performance tuning. So Citizen Developers don't have to think about configuring connections to a database to store their app's data. (example QuickBase capabilities: Field-level and query-level permissions)
  • Self Service Integrations: QuickBase offers intuitive mechanisms that enable Citizen Developers to get at the data they need by integrating and importing data into the app building process without manual data entry or continual involvement from IT. (example QuickBase capabilities: bulk upload directly from other key vendor ecosystem cloud apps; automatic upload from CSV files in cloud apps or on-prem systems; automated workflow triggers from other cloud apps)
  • Abstracted Developer APIs:  QuickBase provides APIs not only to data, but abstracted to user management and application creation features for non-developers. (example QuickBase capabilities: Formula URL language enables people to write to API simply and more accessible to non-coders)
  • Self Service Business Intelligence (at Scale): With QuickBase, end users can customize the experience for their own needs via a deep fine grained permissions model that enables this even for multi-stakeholder applications.  (example QuickBase capabilities: Table to Table relationships; Limiting visibility by field, based on rules, gives users peace of mind to create reports within compliance parameters)

These are just a few examples of the ease of use required of a low-code platform designed to unlock the value of Citizen Development.

Key Drivers for Generating ROI from Low-Code Platforms

Specifically 4 core drivers of ROI can be unlocked according to the Forrester Low-Code Total Economic Impact study on QuickBase.

  • Reduced time and cost to develop applications. Organizations saw a 60% to 85% reduction in development times. The organization also saved on resource costs by utilizing citizen development resources instead of traditional IT resources.
  • Faster time-to-business-value (due to reduced time-to-delivery). The composite organization sees additional business value of $4,418,835 over three years, based on the value each application brings to the company. The value was derived mainly from employee productivity increases, business process time savings, and improved effectiveness of these processes by activating Citizen Developers who know the business requirements best.
  • Avoided headcount in IT. The composite organization avoided hiring two highly paid IT developers by deploying QuickBase. In many cases Citizen Developers contributing to the application development process circumvented the need for these additional resources.
  • A faster time to update and maintain applications. Applications were faster to develop, but the organization benefits from time and cost savings associated with updating and maintaining them through line-of-business citizen development.

So if you’re looking to adopt a Citizen Development approach to app building to unlock these specific ROI drivers attributable from non-developer business users, this requires a true No-Code platform with an ease of use and experience that goes well beyond what most traditional Low-Code platforms offer today.

Ultimately, the ROI results of unified app development cannot be matched by those who take a singular “Coder” approach to Low-Code. Only QuickBase offers the ease of use required to invite true business user “Citizen” developers into the app building process, while at the same time offering enough right-sized IT platform capabilities to be IT-approved. If this approach to low-code sounds like a good fit for your organization, click here to schedule a demo today.

[i] Jan. 2016 Forrester Research, Inc., Vendor Landscape: The Fractured, Fertile Terrain Of Low-Code Application Platforms (pg 11)

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