A top-flight IT team and talented developers are always a good thing, but the reality is that these valuable employees can only work so many hours each day. Many organizations rely on homegrown applications to handle custom reports and database queries, systems integrations, and business process management. If a talented team member leaves your agency, you lose subject matter experts and the knowledge needed to maintain those custom applications. On top of that, asking your IT staff to learn new languages and keep up with the latest tools while also maintaining your existing IT infrastructure and services is… well, let’s just say it’s not a reasonable request. Low-code and no-code business process automation (BPA) provides an affordable alternative to adding staff or outsourcing work.
We’ll look at some of the benefits, but first, here’s an overview of this user-friendly and powerful technology:
What Are Low-Code and No-Code BPA?
Business Process Automation (BPA) refers to the development and use of apps that handle tedious, repetitive, and often error-prone tasks. In the past, connecting various software programs and automating tasks required developers to write custom code in a language like C#. But thanks to giant leaps in computing power and curated libraries of prewritten code, almost anyone can create custom applications that significantly improve efficiency while saving time and money.
What if the people who do the work every day could quickly create applications that make their jobs easier through an intuitive, visual drag-and-drop interface—with no programming skills required? That’s the no-code story!
No-code solutions are fast to build and deploy because they are based on prewritten solutions to automate and link popular software applications.
They are the perfect solution when you don’t need to reinvent the wheel. With no-code BPA, apps like reports, autoresponders, and dashboards can be up and running in record time.
As the name suggests, low-code BPA requires that users have at least basic coding skills. But, in many cases, the staff is eager and willing to learn because the payoff is big: more time for more meaningful work and less time on repetitive tasks. Another common scenario is your business staff and IT working together. Your business team maps how data flows in the system and where client interactions and communications enter the mix. IT staff quickly creates automation using prewritten applications and a little connecting code for specialized programs and situations unique to your agency.
“By 2024, 75% of large enterprises will be using at least four low-code development tools for IT application development and citizen development initiatives.”
– Gartner, Low-Code Development Technologies Evaluation Guide
Benefits of Low-Code and No-Code BPA
Now that you know the basics of low-code and no-code solutions, you probably already see some of the benefits. But let’s jump in and cover them in a little more depth.
1. Improve Your Existing Scripts and Custom Applications
Your IT team has likely developed numerous scripts to automate and connect your business processes, investing a lot of time and energy. Migrating these scripts into a low-code platform makes them more secure via top-grade Azure Government Cloud infrastructure and easier to monitor with built-in audit trails. Plus, you gain insightful reporting that facilitates optimizing script performance.
2. Create and Safely Reuse Common Solutions
Low-code/no-code platforms aren’t reliant on using any specific programming language. They also enforce compliance with corporate and external regulations for information security, and solutions can be shared and reused. In addition, best-in-class BPA platforms have template libraries to clone and build from and marketplaces where you can quickly source project workers and third-party integrations.
By driving adoption across your enterprise, you streamline information flows, reduce technical debt, and ultimately save money.
3. Modernize Employee and Citizen Experiences
Low- and no-code BPA accelerates the flow of information between staff members completing a shared task across your agency and with the public. Unified communication tools track and manage all emails, internal notes, reminders, due dates, and status changes related to a pending (or completed) task. These same tools make it easier for citizens to receive updates on aid applications and information requests.
4. Reduce IT Infrastructure Costs
Most low-code/no-code solutions are hosted on cloud-based infrastructure, so there’s no need to invest in more servers, racks, climate control systems, or other traditional necessities. Software and firmware updates are taken care of by the cloud provider—as are failover, data backups, and security. By using pre-built solutions in a secure infrastructure, agencies have an alternative to hiring more developers or outsourcing the work. Your line-of-business employees effectively become “citizen developers” by defining and creating the solutions. For more complex scenarios, your IT staff can jump in to quickly and easily modify data structure and calls, fine-tune user interfaces, and deploy some code if necessary.
“A citizen developer is an employee who creates application capabilities for consumption by themselves or others.”
– Gartner Glossary
5. Speed Up Your Response to Changing Conditions
Both types of BPA make it easy to create and deploy advanced automation quickly. The best and most flexible systems include many prebuilt workflows, scale across multiple teams thanks to best-of-breed user experience design, and perform well under dramatic variances in load/usage.
MCCi is Your Business Process Automation Partner
We are a leading provider of managed cloud services, intelligent automation (IA), robotic process automation (RPA), records management, and content services. Our team helps your agency identify and implement the best low-code and no-code solutions to maximize efficiency, improve the citizen experience, and ensure enterprise adoption.
Are you ready to modernize your business processes? Get started with one of our experts today!