Ever since industry analysts coined the term, “citizen developer,” there’s been talk about what it really means.Who are the citizen developers in the enterprise? Can citizen developers really do what analysts say they can do? And if citizen developers are on the rise, what are the implications for your business? Here’s what you need to know.
1. They don’t know code, but they know the business.
Citizen developers are users who know what it takes to create a business application. They know about their data sources, users’ needs, and the business processes they need to build.
But citizen developers don’t necessarily have the skills to build a business application with code. They might be business analysts, power users, or administrators.
Through the use of a no-code app development platform, citizen developers can quickly and easily assemble the business apps they need through the ease of drag-and-drop.
Before the advent of no-code platforms like Skuid, citizen developers didn’t exist. Enterprises had to resort to long, drawn-out app development cycles, eroding relationships between IT and the business, and still not helping users get the business apps they really needed.
No-code is the next generation of app development, democratizing the app-building process and giving IT and the business a platform to collaborate What’s more, no-code platforms like Skuid are fully extensible with code, so your developers can rest easy knowing that, should they find any place in the business application where they want to code, they can.
2. You don’t have to sacrifice security.
As with any new or evolving tech trend, especially one that concerns accessing confidential data, security is of utmost importance. In the age of catastrophic data breaches compromising both employee and customer information, businesses can’t afford to let anything slip through the cracks.
When you talk about citizen development with your enterprise IT team, you might hear them mention “shadow IT.” Shadow IT refers to the practice of selecting and deploying cloud services without the consent of the IT department, where cloud apps are managed by people without the skills or knowledge needed to ensure security.
Luckily, citizen development doesn’t have to turn into shadow IT. No-code platforms like Skuid respect the native security for all data that is accessed, keeping your data under existing security controls.
That means that if your data is already housed on a robust, secure platform like Salesforce, AWS, Microsoft, Oracle, or SAP, citizen developers can create and innovate without risk.
The other thing to keep in mind is that citizen development is about building a partnership between IT and the business. If both parties are in the dark about what’s being built and why, trust and understanding cannot grow.
3. Collaborate for maximum efficiency.
When citizen development is done correctly, you achieve speed and productivity on all fronts. Everyone benefits, from the citizen developer, to the user, to IT, to the executive watching their business grow. By using a no-code app development platform like Skuid, citizen developers can:
- Assemble business apps in days, without waiting on IT.
- Free the IT department to tackle bigger projects.
- Solve the business problems that arise from broken processes and software.
- Unify fragmented, disparate data into a single user interface.
- Uncover buried opportunities and insights in your data.
- Respond to user feedback and iterate on business apps instantly.
The better your business apps are and the faster you can deliver them, the more you can get out of your enterprise application investment. Your employees are much more likely to use business apps that help them get their jobs done, elevating user adoption and boosting business productivity.
The easier the apps are to use, the less training is required to ramp up new users, saving time. The faster your people are moving, the more agile your business can be.
4. Start out small.
Empowering citizen developers in your business is a key part of true digital business transformation. But if it sounds scary to roll out a new platform across your organization, know that it doesn’t have to be.
Our most successful customers, for example, start their digital transformations with easy wins that generate rapid ROI. Like transforming processes and consolidating tools in your sales department, the lifeblood of your company.
Successful projects create dedicated advocates of citizen development in the enterprise, champions of the no-code platform, who will then evangelize and educate their peers about the business impact of citizen developers and the power of no-code.
Project by project, you can achieve your digital transformation goals, manage change in your organization, and enjoy the astounding results.
Check out our ebook, Five best practices: Accelerating Salesforce app development and improving user experience, to speed your Salesforce application development and create experiences users love. Learn more.