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Low Code: Cut Shadow IT, Aid Shop Floor Citizen Developers


Low code lets citizen developers get solutions on the board without waiting for IT, while also retaining oversight to ensure security.

With Forrester predicting that 75% of enterprise technology will be built on low code technology, everyone is asking the same question: Why the great interest?

Low code will allow manufacturing companies to build solutions and cut out shadow IT. It’s the key to flexibility and resilience, which are two survival metrics companies need for operating in the post-pandemic world. Let’s look at how low code can unlock a new wave of value.

Low code technology allows team members to build solutions relatively easily, i.e., without in-depth knowledge of coding languages, best practices, and development concepts. Developers are presented with a basic, drag-and-drop framework that gets solutions up and running quickly, sometimes in a matter of hours.

Low code enables citizen developers to get solutions on the board without waiting for IT. It doesn’t replace IT completely – enterprises still need IT for higher-order tasks such as governance, data ingestion, and cybersecurity – but it allows departments to build simple solutions without getting bogged down in an endless cycle of development.

Why low code matters

IT departments are busy. They’re trying to address the shop floor’s need for a better inventory management or performance monitoring application, but that doesn’t take priority thanks to that brand-new regulation or the latest security issue.

What often happens is that the shop floor finds and implements a solution without telling IT. And it’s fine until it becomes a security issue lying in wait. Everest Group research estimates that enterprises spend nearly 50% of their IT budget on shadow IT, meaning hefty spending without realizing what solutions are in the fold.

Low code allows people working on the floor to create solutions that suit them, on their schedule and not based on the priorities of the C-suite or the IT department. Companies using low code can embrace the concept of shadow IT without leaving huge areas of risk open for exploitation. Instead of shutting things down and leaving employees to fend for themselves with hopelessly slow manual processes, teams have the tools they need to create solutions.

The resulting partnership

IT can enable other departments to build solutions and rapidly deploy them, creating resilience and flexibility. Teams can pivot on demand without waiting for IT to get to each small project, and IT can oversee the results, especially when these programs deploy company-wide.

Enabling citizen developers puts technology back where it belongs: creating value for the company. As enterprises and manufacturing adjust to the need for real-time insight and rapid-fire innovation, low code could offer just the compromise they need between development and security. It’s time to release IT from every mundane development task and create a climate of technology collaboration.

Elizabeth Wallace

About Elizabeth Wallace

Elizabeth Wallace is a Nashville-based freelance writer with a soft spot for data science and AI and a background in linguistics. She spent 13 years teaching language in higher ed and now helps startups and other organizations explain - clearly - what it is they do.

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