Why Low-Code Solutions Provide Answers and New Challenges
The COVID pandemic immediately forced a perspective change for many governments that were suddenly dealing with continuing to provide government services while minimizing both in-person interaction and increasing the percentage of staff working remotely.
This rapid shift created challenges for staff members who’d grown accustomed to legacy tools, patchwork solutions, and years-old manual or semi-manual processes. Customizing solutions that could provide the environment that allowed employees to do their jobs, be scalable to handle the needs of remote work, and safe enough to meet the needs of IT security provided an opportunity for digital government to take a large step forward. “Low-Code” solutions helped governments take control, increase innovation, and even achieve time savings during a period of crisis.
As governments return to work while establishing how to continue during the Delta Variant, the mix of remote and on-site workplaces still presents challenges that low-code solutions continue to solve. The growth of low-code solutions shows that government is moving toward an environment with customizable, digital answers to the problems of outdated legacy tools.
The Future is Low-Code
In a world of “drag-and-drop” and “plug-and-play” technology, low-code solutions offer the convenience of customized software while providing ongoing flexibility and in-house ownership. These tools allow users in all departments, not just software developers, to take control of bringing digital visions to life.
Low-code capabilities that support remote work functions, such as digital forms and workflow automation, that help keep the lights on even when the offices are empty.
Business analyst Gartner recently forecasted that the worldwide low-code development technologies market will total $13.8bn in 2021, an increase of 23.2% from 2020. This increase in demand is set to continue during 2021, despite ongoing pressure in IT departments to reduce costs.
Gartner predicted that low-code application platforms would remain the largest component of the low-code development tech market into 2022, increasing by 65% from 2020 to reach $5.8bn. Other areas of growth include rapid mobile app development (RMAD) tools and rapid application development (RAD) tools, as businesses look to reach users in multiple channels such as their phone or online.
While some low-code platforms still require some coding skills, these tools promise to accelerate software development by letting developers work with pre-written code components that focus more on innovation and less on technical know-how.
Understanding why Government IT is different for Low-Code
Government agencies tend to be more risk-averse than the private sector when it comes to technology, frequently taking a slower approach to adapting the latest tools. Cybersecurity is an area that sets government apart from private sector clients, as vital information and records are often in use for government solutions.
While the flexibility and low bar for coding knowledge provide ways for non-IT staff to customize tools to meet their individual needs, it’s important for government users to make sure that cybersecurity is front and center in their planning. The time savings gained through implementing low-code tools that remove development time from the IT department’s plate means nothing if new solutions create security gaps that have to be fixed later.
But as a result, low-code solutions provide the opportunity for IT departments to expand a culture of security-minded thinking across their agencies. Users looking to develop low-code solutions learn not only the importance of security and consulting with the IT department, but the need to thoroughly assess and validate low-code providers before putting solution into action.
The Importance of Access and Equity
Low-code solutions create a launchpad for digital innovation, allowing the flexibility to stay up to date on UX best practice and be on agile footing when meeting their residents’ needs. Effective low-code products also provide the tools to build solutions for an array of possible needs. Products such as govService deliver products that make it easy to develop digital interfaces that can better help governments achieve their goals in working with residents.
But while this flexibility provides the chance to tear down interdepartmental silos and change the way that residents interact with their government, implementing low-code solutions must be done with equal access and equity in mind. Governments could alienate their less-tech-savvy constituents or those who do not have reliable broadband connections by creating solutions that only benefit one type of channel.
The rise of mobile development in low-code software provides governments the opportunity to make sure that their solutions can reach the most residents in the most convenient ways for them to interact with their government, whether that’s mobile web, internet, or even SMS messaging.
Low-Code is Making the Change
Government, healthcare, and other vital services were predicted to strain or even break under the weight of COVID. Thanks to the impact of low-code solutions, agencies were able to overcome the impact of decades of outdated procedures and staff with limited technical knowledge. Low-code solutions have become critical not only to current government, but to its future.
Find out how low-code solutions can help shift the culture and workflows in your government!