Manufacturers in China use low-code development platforms to support their digital initiatives. Many adopt low-code platforms to build form-based web apps for broad use cases, but that’s just the beginning. Advanced companies support more sophisticated data-centric applications with improved data management and integration capabilities.

Four case studies show how manufacturers in China leverage low-code platforms to innovate their operations and explore new business models:

  • JAC Motors enhanced its data middle office strategy. Over the past 20 years, JAC Motors has built more than 100 systems to support its operations. But the resulting data silos now prevent it from delivering applications quickly, hindering the company’s growth. JAC Motors planned a “data middle office” strategy to improve data management and make application delivery more efficient and effective. The company adopted a low-code development platform together with integration and data management platforms from Definesys to design a unified data system and tech architecture.
  • Xinxing Pipes drove processes optimization with a low-code center of excellence. Xinxing Pipes manufactures iron pipes. It worked with a consulting firm to build a digital transformation roadmap and zeroed in on process optimization as the first milestone. The analysis identified the firm’s commodity purchasing processes as an area of improvement. It deployed the ActionSoft AWS PaaS low-code development platform (not to be confused with Amazon’s AWS brand) atop existing systems to build a unified application development platform
  • Hikkor Medical improved operational efficiency from the top down. Hikkor Medical is a small manufacturer of medical equipment. As its business grew, it needed a more flexible system to handle its customers’ highly diverse requirements. Existing commercial products lacked this level of flexibility, so CEO Biao Jiang chose Qingflow’s “no-code” development platform to build a custom system.
  • SEARI improved delivery capabilities to support business expansion. The Shanghai Electrical Apparatus Research Institute (SEARI) is a state-owned research center with a heritage in manufacturing and selling IoT gateway devices. It recently developed a new revenue source via an industrial internet solution that uses a low-code platform from ClickPaaS for extensibility and faster delivery.

Forrester’s 2022 data shows that 38% of business and technology professionals at manufacturing firms in China with 2,500 or more employees say that they will implement or expand the adoption of low-code and no-code platforms in the next 12 months. The experiences of the four companies highlighted in this report show that manufacturers in China are adopting low-code development platforms to:

  • Improve workflow efficiency and effectiveness for last-mile digital demands. Even with enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems in place, most manufacturers in China are unable to effectively leverage operational data to improve business performance. ERP is costly to upgrade, and experts are needed to create new functionality. Manufacturers see low-code platforms as a cost-effective way to build processes that allow employees to access systems-of-record data and capture new data in an operational context. Low-code solutions’ support for mobile apps extends the availability of these core systems to shop floor employees, thereby improving workflow efficiency and effectiveness.
  • Make IT operations more agile. IT teams have started to use low-code platforms to support digital transformation initiatives targeting IT operations. Manufacturing companies executing data middle office strategies use low-code platforms to build new processes that enable master data management and improve data governance. IT and data teams can easily modify policies to respond to new demands from business users, improving business agility with dynamic business rules.
  • Enhance collaboration between business and IT experts. Low-code platforms enable citizen developers to better collaborate with professional developers. Interface prototypes in studio canvas built by citizen developers can describe new business initiatives more accurately than product requirement documents. Rapid development and WYSIWYG experience design also shorten the time from change request to delivery. Collaboration around low-code platforms improves alignment and speeds delivery.

If you’re interested in learning more details from the four use cases we studied, please take a look at the report, Case Studies: Manufacturers In China Accelerate Value Delivery With Low Code. And if you’d like to share some insights about your company’s strategy for emerging technologies, feel free to reach out to me directly or set up an inquiry by emailing