Lately, Hyperautomation has taken the business world by storm along with Low Code Development. In this blog, we will present the latest ideas related to these topics so that you can get all the information in one place. It is based on conversations with Unvired’s CTO, content from Gartner, our customers, and some of the Low Code vendors, and I would like to thank them upfront.
I would like to begin with a Customer story that made all this real for me. One of our Mining customers that runs SAP is mobilizing their Asset Management operations in the US and Europe. As part of this, their Business Users have developed several digital forms related to Safety, Work Permits, and Risk with No Code—by simply using Drag & Drop components leveraging the Unvired Low Code Application Platform (LCAP), known as Turbo Apps. In the past, they would have had Unvired create these Forms-based apps-not anymore. There are other stories, but this is my favorite.
So, what exactly are Hyperautomation and Low Code? Gartner describes hyper-automation as “Hyperautomation deals with the application of advanced technologies, including artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML), to increasingly automate processes and augment humans.” Low Code comprises various technologies including LCAP, Multiexperience Development Platforms (MXDP), Robotic Process Automation (RPA), Intelligent Business Process Management (iBPMS), and Citizen Development. Low Code as the name implies enables building of applications and automating processes by using Drag and Drop components that make it easy to build applications without the need for a professional developer.
As businesses accelerate their digital transformation due to COVID-19 and Work from Home, hyper-automation has become critical. Thus, the demand to build new applications is surging and high-touch obsolete processes have to be digitized. At the same time, the supply of developer resources is constrained which is delaying the drive to digital and remote development has surged. This has created the perfect environment for Low Code Application Platforms (LCAP). According to Gartner, the Low Code App Development Technologies market is projected to increase by 23% in 2021.
Benefits of Low Code
- Lesser Skills: This allows for easier development and lower competencies needed.
- Dev Time: Reduce development time enabling faster Time to Market.
- Greater Productivity: Replace paper, email, and spreadsheets faster.
- Self-service: Business users can create their own apps without the need to get IT involved. As needs change, the apps can be modified or new ones created rapidly.
So, where does one begin? It is important to first define your hyper-automation strategy and carefully select a Low Code Platform. Businesses shall have to prioritize their Low Code initiatives—should they start with an LCAP or perhaps go for RPA first. Then again, MXDP for some could be the way to go to engage customers via all channels-web, mobile, chatbots, Voice, or Wearables. How about Reporting and enabling business users to create their own charts easily? Those who elect to go with LCAP may even choose more than one LCAP, especially larger enterprises.
LCAP can be used to create superior User Experiences for customers, employees, and partners. We present below some Use Cases that we have encountered:
- Forms/Data Collection: We mentioned this at the beginning where our mining customer has created digital forms on their own for data collection. Asset Inspections data is collected on Android mobile devices and integrated with their mobile app for Work Orders with SAP being the system of record. The data collection app was built using Unvired’s Turbo Apps LCAP. Another example comes from ESH, where our customers have developed Digital Work Permit apps to convert paper-based Safe Work permits to enable collaboration between Operations and Maintenance to enhance Operational Excellence.
- Business Process and Workflow: A good example of this is for Purchase Order Approvals. By using the building blocks for Workflow and Integration, an app can be rapidly developed by Business Users to view a PO, approve or reject it, and send the data to an ERP system like SAP or Oracle.
- Create new UI for existing apps: This involves putting a more user-friendly skin on the front end. For example, an order-taking spreadsheet can be converted to a digital form, workflow with business rules can be invoked, and with integration hooks, that data can be sent to an Order Taking system.
- Low Code Reporting: Customers are looking to build interactive charts and drill down the ability to make better decisions. Analytics/Dashboards are a big use case for Low Code.
According to Gartner, Governance is a key element in the successful adoption of Low Code Platforms. There could be several governance models:
- Only IT: When an application is mission-critical, it is hands-off for Business or Citizen developers. The risks are just too high and such apps need corporate IT to be firmly in charge.
- Self Govern: When an application is specific to a Line of Business and accomplishes a limited set of functionality without posing any serious security risk, self-governance may work.
- Co-Create: For applications that fall in the middle, IT and Business can co-create and have a shared governance model.
Gartner predicts that by 2025, over 70% of app development could be done by LCAP. Artificial Intelligence (AI) will start getting incorporated into Low Code Platforms. LCAP vendors need not build their own AI technology. At Unvired, we shall enhance our integration with Google Cloud AI services for Machine Learning and AI. Low code Intelligent Document Processing and RPA are already happening. The question that you need to answer is: “Are you ready to capitalize on these Hyperautomation and Low Code trends?”
Let us know if we can help you define your Low Code/LCAP strategy and help prioritize your initiatives to maximize the business value you gain.