Though the act of developing applications will remain essential and become more critical than ever, the nature of development is changing. And those who adapt first and fastest will win.
Coding has never been a particularly desirable or efficient exercise within enterprise organizations. Most of the executive team has little idea what developers actually do, and, truth be told, they don’t really want to be in the business of producing software in the first place.
Still, enterprise leaders have had little choice — they needed software to run their businesses, and there was a limit to what they could purchase off-the-shelf. As a result, there has been a constant see-saw battle in which organizations demand more and better software, while at the same time consistently try to cut the amount they have to spend on developing it.
As part of that back-and-forth process, there has been a consistent desire to significantly reduce the amount of coding that the organization required to meet its needs. Sometimes it took the form of mandates to use non-customized, commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) software. In other cases, it led to extended experiments with rapid application development (RAD) platforms.
None of these approaches were ever sufficient, however, and the ranks of enterprise application development teams continued to swell. Then, with the rise of software as a chief source of competitive advantage and enabler of digital transformation, it became apparent that coders would remain a critical fixture of enterprise IT.
And developers breathed a collective sigh of relief.
But as software has become ever-more critical to the enterprise, the ability to deliver it more rapidly and to change it more dynamically has become essential. Ironically, this has led organizations to once again examine ways to improve efficiency and reduce the time and resources spent on coding.
Today, that comes in the form of a new breed of so-called low-code application development platforms. But do these platforms run counter to the DevOps movement, which organizations also adopted to solve the same problem? And will these new platforms finally be sufficient to eliminate coding in the enterprise?