As a business administration and information technology student, I have examined the topic of low-code development during my 4-week practical phase. Like Sven Haiges in previous posts (blog and Labs Talk), I’ve been working with the low-code platforms Node-RED, FloGO, and n8n. However, my focus in this post is on how much startups and SAP has been working on the topic.
In the following section, I will be explaining three startups, including Automation.io, Elastics.io, and Built.io. The focus is on all simple programming and the integration and automation of processes, programs, and business applications.
Automate.io allows you to integrate many cloud applications and apps to automate a range of marketing, sales, and business processes, using connection lines, like Node-RED, n8n, and so on.
Automate.io offers many functions and benefits that ensure good and fast integration. One advantage is the quick setup. Single integrations or multi-application operations are created in a few minutes without having to write a code line. In addition, with the “Automation” function, you can automate and execute three more tasks in all areas than with the number of actions that are possible using the Web automation platform. Another advantage of Automate.io is Live Chat Support. It is possible to transfer laborious tasks and services to an autopilot, to clarify questions and problems directly.
Currently, more than 1,000 companies use Automate.io, including Airbnb and UCLA.
Elastic.io has made it possible to connect the APIs, local applications, and cloud applications of other companies quickly and easily. The Elastic library contains many prefabricated components for common business applications. You can also create your own custom components and create new products.
Elastic.io has some interesting features. One example is the Intuitive Designer, the user-friendly drag-and-drop editor of Elastics.io where all applications and system workflows are mapped. This is also similar to Node-RED. Furthermore, Elastic.io contains tools for monitoring workflows, identifying inconsistencies, and searching for and correcting errors.
The Elastic.io platform is easy to extend and allows for the development of new integrations.
Elastic.io software is used by many companies around the world, including Wirecard and Deutsche Telekom.
Built.io flow is an intelligent Integration platform as a service (iPaaS) that you can use to connect each microservice, device, or platform to a corresponding API. It enables you to automate tasks and processes in all areas of the company, such as Finance, Marketing, HR, and Operations.
This startup also offers many features and benefits, such as an intuitive user interface that uses a visual drag-and-drop interface, allowing you to design, assemble, and execute workflows. Other great advantages involve safety. To ensure data protection, Built.io uses a wide range of security functions, including encryption, access control, two-factor authentication, limited logon attempts, and so on.
Many Fortune 500 companies and governments worldwide rely on Built.io software, including NBA, Fromage, and Astute.
In addition to the startups, I have also examined Mendix and Robotic Process Automation, as they are already used in part at SAP. I will briefly describe them in the following section.
Mendix is a low-code platform that has been part of Siemens AG since 2018, with which it is possible to accelerate the deployment of enterprise applications across your application development cycle, from ideation through development, deployment, and ongoing management of the company’s application portfolio in the cloud or on premise.
Mendix has similar properties like the other low code platforms. Mendix is also based on three basic principles: speed, cooperation and control.
Together with Mendix, which is the leader in the area of low code platforms, SAP is in collaboration to ensure that web and mobile applications are provided in a very short time, and that existing investments in the SAP software can be protected and that they can provide added value to customers more quickly.
The Mendix visual development tools and comprehensive support over the entire lifecycle enable developers to make applications available up to ten times faster than traditional development approaches. These apps can easily be integrated with SAP systems, data, and services, and can be deployed directly on the SAP Cloud Platform. Since 2017, the Mendix platform has been sold and supported through the SAP App Center. In addition, the Mendix Platform has been integrated into the long-term SAP solution roadmap.
If you want to know more, visit: https://www.mendix.com/sap/
I can now draw my personal conclusion based on the results and summaries produced. In the age of digitization and IT 4.0, low-level code development is a trend that points the way forward, as the speed of IT development continues to increase. Agile software development has become standard in many areas as the precise goals can often only be defined in advance. In general, the traditional development is thus increasingly replaced by cost-efficient and time-saving alternatives. Thanks to the high speed of development, a low-code developer can not only respond more quickly to customer requirements, but also develop dialogs directly in the conversation with the user department in extreme cases. For this reason, low-code tools are ideal for agile development.
This brings me to the conclusion that low-code platforms are particularly suited to the automation of processes and business processes, which is a great advantage for SAP and its vision of the Intelligent Enterprise. Mendix increases the speed of development, which helps to achieve the Intelligent Enterprise sooner. The speed of development is also the focus of the startups. Integrating applications works more easily and faster with low-code platforms. In my opinion, developing complex programs should be done in “traditional” programming methods. This allows creating sophisticated logic flexibly. Therefore, there is no concern for developers who see their job at risk through these platforms. However, low-code platforms are a good alternative to existing programming, are agile, and are likely to become increasingly widespread in the coming years – most probably to augment the skill level of good developers. From this point of view, startups play a major role and continue to drive innovation and development of these platforms.