Integrations 101: What Is Low-Code Automation?

Samir Sampat
|
2023-02-14

In the past, companies relied heavily on IT specialists and tech support teams to handle coding, scripts, and other technology needs because of the specialized knowledge required. However, that didn’t eliminate the risk of human error, nor did it make it any cheaper for businesses to operate. Many companies had to spend more to invest in an IT team that they didn’t need before. 

As technology has evolved, a new type of automation platform has come available to address the many problems of traditional automation and reliance on human IT teams. Low-code automation tools are readily available in several forms and allow business users to build their own applications without a dependency on IT teams or outsourced IT services. 

Research suggests that by 2024, low-code application building will comprise over 65% of application development functions. And it’s also estimated that 66% of large companies will be using at least four low-code platforms or tools by that time, as well. 

What is low-code automation, though, and why is it becoming so popular? Here’s what you need to know. 

What is low-code automation?

Low-code automation is a method of automating certain business processes without the use of extensive coding. This makes it easier for non-technical users to implement automation tools and decreases the reliance on software engineers and developers, thanks to visualized tools and user-friendly interfaces with drag-and-drop workflow creation. 

These platforms enable rapid delivery of a new tool or application without the extensive hand-coding required of traditional application development. They also offer quick deployment and setup and can help teams work faster and more efficiently. Low-code apps can also increase software production throughout the organization, thanks to the empowerment of “citizen” developers. 

Instead of having to know how to write code, users can employ a visual interface to change workflows or automate processes, as well as to access various features of the tool. This speeds up development cycles, accelerates scalability, and offers several other perks. 

Low-code vs. no-code automation 

The next thing people ask is whether low-code and no-code automation are the same things. Some people will use the terms interchangeably, but there is a difference. Low-code automation means that there is little coding required, while no-code means that there will be no coding at all. You’ll just get a fully visualized interface where you can create the workflow automations you desire. 

Low-code automation will require coding knowledge for complex actions or specific advanced efforts, which is the biggest difference. In no-code automation, even those complex actions are easily handled through a graphical user interface. 

Why use low-code automation?

There are several perks to using low-code automation—namely, the fact that it opens up application development to all members of an organization, not just the IT team. It enhances your existing technology stack by augmenting all the resources you’re already using. It also helps standardize processes and includes features like:

  • Process visualization
  • Document generation
  • Process orchestration
  • Approval flows
  • Request management
  • Forms and portals
  • Monitoring and reporting 

These platforms are desirable because they offer a quick time-to-market and easy integration with the tools you use every day. They also offer the ability to self-serve and free up your IT staff for more dedicated efforts, thanks to the prebuilt workflows and lack of coding required. Plus, they increase scalability and ensure that you have solutions that will grow with your business. 

Benefits of low-code automation

When you properly implement low-code automation tools, you will find several benefits. For starters, it offers a level of user-friendliness that hasn’t been seen in technology before. It also ensures that all best practices are followed across the entire organization, allowing organizations to react swiftly to any changes or demands. 

This delivers greater agility for all levels and employees within the organization, including the IT staff and the company leaders. It ensures that modifications can be made quickly and that you can adapt to regulatory changes or market demands as needed. 

You will gain increased efficiency as a result of this process optimization. Being able to develop and hone processes faster with drag-and-drop interfaces means faster results and better outcomes in less time. And of course, that leads to great value for your money. These platforms aren’t nearly as expensive as some people would think them to be and they offer a lot of accessibility for all areas of the organization. 

This will help you maintain control and visibility of your operations while building with the company over time, even without the dedicated attention of your IT staff. It also allows you to reuse elements from one process to create another, making it even easier to get things done. 

How to choose the right low-code automation tools

There are several tools out there today to help with low-code automation needs, including some that are free and others that come at a cost. Most are cloud-based, allowing them to scale easier and are more affordable than traditional software programs and hosted solutions. 

When choosing low-code automation tools, look for reputable providers that have the features that you need. Check out the costs and make sure that they’re transparent about pricing. See what people have to say about them in the reviews and testimonials, and be sure to check the software’s ratings with third-party rating companies (G2, Capterra, GetApp, TrustRadius, etc.). This will ensure that you choose the best tools for your needs by gathering all the facts to help you make an informed decision. 

Make communications and admin easier, too, when you outsource to Smith.ai

While you’re looking into easier solutions, why not free up more time and resources where you can? Partner with the virtual receptionists at Smith.ai and you’ll have a 24/7 answering service to ensure that you never miss a single opportunity. Plus, we can even offer support for your outreach campaigns, appointment scheduling and lead intake, and your live website chat

That way, you can focus on your business while we take care of the details. And as always, it comes with a custom strategy to manage it all. To learn more, schedule a consultation or reach out to hello@smith.ai

Samir Sampat

Samir Sampat is a Marketing and Events Associate with Smith.ai. He has experience working with businesses of all sizes focusing on marketing, communications, and business development.

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