When compared with traditional coding, the benefits of low-code platforms are well understood. Namely: speed, agility, and expanding the developer pool.
This last benefit (expanding the developer pool, especially to citizen developers) is the focus of much of the market — and understandably so, given its transformative potential. However, does lowering the technical bar to develop software mean that low code is just for those who can’t do better? In other words, is low code really just for dummies?
We recently analyzed our data on professional developers — those who are software developers by profession, typically reporting into IT departments, and are thus not citizen developers. Among these professional developers, we compared those who use low-code tools (the “low-coders”) with those who don’t (the “high-coders”).
What The Data Says
When compared with their high-coder colleagues, professional low-coders are more business focused and technology advanced. That is, low-coders know and care much more about business conditions and results, but they are also more likely to work on “advanced” or cloud-native architectures and use cases, such as containers, service mesh, and IoT apps. They also have different strategic goals: Low-coders were 2.5 times more likely than high-coders to say that they viewed “changing our business model” (the extreme end of digital transformation) as a high or critical priority of their organization.
In my view, these points outline a key developer persona: the professional developer who cares more about solving business problems than strictly technical ones, who wears many hats to get the job done, and who willingly uses new or advanced technology to do it. This is the developer who uses low code.
Does this person sound like a dummy to you?