Build for Speed or Build for Citizen Developer?

  • November 13, 2017
  • Scott

MWD’s insight newsletter is a good one to be reading.  I have subscribed to MWD’s research over the years and have found it to be a great value.

In a recent email missive, Neil Ward-Dutton states:

“Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past couple of years, you’ll have doubtless heard more and more vendors talking about (and introducing products and services to cater to the needs of) “citizen” developers / integrators / data scientists / etc.

I’m coming to the conclusion that in reality, these people don’t exist (or at least, not in as many places as you might think). It’s more complicated than that. “

It’s a fascinating take on the citizen developer trend.  Neil’s conclusion (in context of the whole email) isn’t that these folks don’t exist – but that they are much smaller in number than people imagine. And therefore the REAL goal of addressing citizen developers is to produce software platforms that make software development dramatically more efficient – regardless of who is at the keyboard.

The goal is speed to value, rather than enabling less technical people to build applications.  And that imperative explains the popularity of RPA and low-code at the same time.

“Both speed and collaboration concerns are issues for both technology specialists and specialists from other parts of the business, but for slightly different reasons and motivations. What binds them together is a realisation that the challenges of today’s business environments demand they work together, effectively and quickly.”

This is a consideration our own team tries to keep in mind as we build tools for our clients. Low-code and no-code sound great – but the real goal isn’t low-or-no-code – it is the speed with which you can solve the problem and collaborate on new answers. And so, in that sense, low-code and no-code are byproducts of pursuing the vision, rather than the vision themselves.



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