Less is more: why low-code is the future for Irish businesses

Paul Hardy of ServiceNow explains how giving employees the power and confidence to easily build their own apps can boost productivity

The past two years have sparked colossal change in the world of work. Hybrid working is our new reality, digital transformation is on the rise, and as a result, more and more companies are turning to modern applications and new technology systems to improve workflow. In fact, in a recent survey of ServiceNow’s full-time employees in the Republic of Ireland, we found that almost half of them use applications to get their job done at work, more now than they did before the pandemic.

And yet, employees remain unsatisfied.

Despite efforts to drive efficiency with new technologies, our survey found that 47 per cent of employees are unhappy with the applications and tools they use in their roles on a day-to-day basis.

Clearly, there’s room for improvement, and the introduction of low-code technology is just one of the ways you can get started.

The challenges facing Irish businesses

So, what are the key challenges still facing Irish businesses today, and more importantly, why aren’t existing applications working?

The main issue revealed by our study was that current solutions on offer are often complicated and long-winded. This complexity means that time and effort is wasted battling against software, instead of focussing on what really matters – getting the job done.

We also found that the applications businesses put in place for their employees aren’t necessarily relevant to their actual roles. Companies are investing real time and money on high-quality tools, yet they’re being wasted on those who have no real need for them. This isn’t productivity, it’s inefficiency.

Each of these issues, when left unresolved, has a knock-on effect throughout an entire organisation, especially for the departments that rely on digital tools most: think IT, Operations and HR.

Luckily for businesses, there is a way forward. Of those surveyed, 46 per cent felt that they would benefit from digital tools, providing they could build them themselves, and that these tools were tailored to their own specific needs.

But, with more than half of those employees also lacking confidence in their coding capabilities, the platforms on which these tools are created need to be made much, much more accessible in order to be successful.

This is where low-code technology comes into play.

Paul Hardy, evangelist, chief innovation office, at ServiceNow

What is low-code, and how can it help?

Essentially, low-code is a modern approach to building applications that empowers developers to create efficient, powerful tools without the need for extensive hand-coding.

The platforms are designed specifically for non-technical business users or developers. They rely on a visual-based model to streamline the development process, and because of this, they require very little previous experience; and for those who do have existing coding experience, there is still the option to delve deeper and code by hand where necessary.

The benefits of this approach are extensive. By giving employees the power and confidence to easily build their own apps, you enable them to create something entirely relevant to them, driving efficiency, boosting productivity, and simplifying day-to-day tasks.

That, in turn, means limited resources can be more effectively allocated elsewhere, be it to innovation, or to more creative work that employees do best.

Crucially, this low-code approach stands to benefit business functions way beyond just IT. Whether it’s in HR, finance, or operations, employees across the business can use low-code technology to turn mundane tasks into automated workflows, freeing up time to spend on real value-add tasks.

A smart investment for Irish businesses

The learnings many Irish businesses have gathered from the pandemic are sound: technology is the solution to a world of work that keeps on changing.

But it needs to be the right technology. All the signs are pointing to the fact that employees in Ireland are ready to replace legacy platforms – which require a masters in rocket science to navigate – with easy-to-build solutions that, quite simply, do exactly what employees need them to do.

But, with businesses already on the uptake, we need to act quickly. It’s predicted that by 2023, more than half of medium-to-large enterprises will be using low-code. The quicker you can adopt these types of solutions, the greater your competitive advantage.

With such a simple answer to some of the most prevalent challenges facing the workforce in Ireland today, it’s time for organisations to take notice.

For details visit: servicenow.com