Demystifying No-Code Automation
No other metaphor is more suitable for low-code automation than LEGO building blocks. LEGO allows your imagination to run wild; you can build entire castles, trains or even a scaled version of the RMS Titanic with one humble brick — without needing advanced engineering or crafting knowledge.
The same concept applies to low-code automation — it’s really that simple. You’re using pre-made components (bricks) to construct automations without needing extensive coding experience. In both cases, the construction process doesn’t become a hindrance; instead, it promotes creativity and problem-solving and enables a wide range of people with various expertise to build something functional and valuable.
If you were to build a website decades ago — you would need to know how to code. But if you were building a website today, there are several tools you can use to help you create one. Building automations followed a similar evolution.
In essence, low-code automation is the use of development platforms and automation software to create automations, such as the SS&C | Blue Prism® UX Builder. Platforms like these provide a visual graphical user interface (GUI) and user-friendly environment for people to design, test, build and deploy their automations. They even offer pre-built components and templates that can be edited if you have some coding skills, hence the “low” in low-code.
You will often see people who use low-code automation tools be called citizen developers. The term is used to describe individuals within an organization who may not have a formal coding or software background but use low-code tools to create automations that address specific business needs.
No-code automation is also commonly referenced when talking about low-code. Low-code and no-code are similar, but no-code takes it one step further: it requires absolutely no coding or software knowledge. It relies heavily on visuals and pre-built interfaces and functions for people to build their automations.
Think of it like this: no-code means users can use simple, pre-built features to create their automations; but for anything more complex or specific, some level of programming knowledge is required and that’s where low-code steps in.
Robotic process automation (RPA) is the use of software robots to automate manual, repetitive, error-prone tasks usually carried out by a human. RPA doesn’t require custom workflow or application development. It automates existing processes. Its relation to low-code? They’re both technologies aimed at improving efficiency and automating tasks — just with different capabilities and focuses.
RPA is well-suited to automate structured, quality data. That’s where it thrives. But if you have a legacy system that needs integration or if data in the system is unstructured, it can get a little challenging to use RPA alone and see its full benefits. That’s where you could integrate low-code automation. Low-code easily works with legacy systems and unstructured data to rebuild outdated systems in a cost-effective, faster and simpler way than hiring a team of RPA developers to build custom automations every time.
The use of RPA bots to automate repetitive business tasks that a human would usually perform.
Intuitive, visual approach to building simple and complex workflow automations for end-to-end processes.
Automate structured, quality data within the boundaries of existing systems.
The creation and deployment of automations with the ability to integrate with databases and third-party business applications.
Suitable for straightforward tasks.
Suitable for simple and complex tasks.
Low-code automation provides a wide range of benefits for organizations and individuals alike:
Companies who support their citizen developers by deploying low-code or no-code tools score 33% higher in innovation than those that don’t."McKinsey
Low-code automation helps empower employees to take control of their business processes and automate workflows and tasks. How can you put low-code automation into action? Here are some examples:
Appointment scheduling: Easily automate patient appointment scheduling, reminders and follow-ups with low-code. You can also then ensure patient confidentiality and improve patient experiences.
Inventory management: Low-code automations can be generated to track inventory for medical supplies and medications to ensure stock levels are adequate and expired items are removed.
The bottom line is that low-code automation platforms help businesses increase their efficiency and agility in the competitive market. They help empower employees to adapt quickly, streamline operations and innovate more effectively by breaking the barriers and making automation more accessible to everyone.
When you have a citizen development model helping create the automations, you’re also able to reallocate IT resources towards higher priorities and more strategic initiatives that require complex code or software development. It's a win-win situation.
By 2025, 70% of new applications developed by organizations will use low-code or no-code technologies, up from less than 25% in 2020."Gartner
Low-code applications, platforms and tools are only getting smarter and more advanced — making it even easier for people to create the automations they want and need. They are transforming how resources are used: freeing up IT teams from routine tasks and offering employees a chance to innovate. Those who are using low-code are seeing unparalleled strategic advantages as they are more adaptable, creative and streamlined.
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