Almost half of workers would like to build their own apps to make themselves more efficient. Is low code the future of work?
Since the pandemic, there has been an influx of new technologies intended to support employees and automate operations, particularly when working from home.
However, one in seven (15%) workers is unhappy with the current technology deployed in their workplace, with 45% of them claiming it actually added more time to their tasks and 37% expressing it did not fulfil their purposes.
A ServiceNow survey of 500 full-time professionals across Ireland has revealed that almost half (46% ) of employees would like to build their own apps. The reasons? To improve efficiency in their role (47%), make their job easier (40%) and also achieve more with their existing resources (37%).
“Employees across Ireland are using more apps than ever before to aid remote and hybrid working”
Low code platforms have the potential to make software development so easy that almost anyone can build an app, removing up to 90% of the coding requirements.
Planet of the apps
“Employees across Ireland are using more apps than ever before to aid remote and hybrid working,” says Mark Cockerill, vice-president of Legal at ServiceNow.
“However, many do not feel that these apps meet their current needs and can in some cases hinder rather than help them. By applying domain and business knowledge as well as other skills to solve problems using low code development platforms, employees can reduce admin tasks, and deliver real value to their role, and in turn, their organisation.”
When asked about the type of apps they would build, a high proportion (41%) longed for an app that keeps track of tasks and to-do lists; while an app that completes admin and reporting tasks was second on the wish list (34%), demonstrating a desire for greater productivity and the freedom to spend time on their actual job, not the admin.
Making working life easier
Interestingly, when it comes to app building, 70% of employees would prefer their employer to create the actual app, so they can incorporate their colleagues’ feedback into the development, with a third believing it is their employer’s responsibility to address work pain points, and to offer solutions to make their working life easier, and more enjoyable.
The survey also showed that employees perceive app development as a complex task. 30% said that creating an app sounded complicated, and even more (33%) stated they do not feel they have the creativity to build their own app. But almost half (46%) of employees would be willing to build their own apps or digital capabilities if they had the means to do so with minimal coding knowledge, via low code platforms such as the ServiceNow App Engine Studio.
“Rather than ‘citizen developers’, businesses need employees with the creative ideas to improve and enhance business innovation and productivity”, says Ronan Fox, senior vice-president of IT R&D at drug development business ICON.
“At ICON, we encourage our employees to be innovative in the way they approach their day-to-day work, and actively encourage them to collaborate with IT to be even more productive. ServiceNow’s research shows this is what employees want and organisations need. Central to this is governance throughout the process to ensure that delivered applications meet the needs of the business in a way that is scalable, robust, and effective. For example, at ICON we have created a Centre of Excellence in Automation, which helps the business understand how technology can enable both day-to-day needs and longer-term strategies.”
With the onset of hybrid working and working from home full time, we are using more apps than ever before. Almost have of respondents (45%) expressed a desire to integrate their professional apps, while 33% said they’d like to augment existing tools, such as video conferencing, to make their capabilities more specific for their needs.
Outside of work, low code also has a place. More than half (52%) of those surveyed would like an app for keeping track of personal admin and finance, 35% for health and fitness and 29% would like a app to keep track of their family’s or partner’s schedule and social life.
“Considering the unprecedented demand for professional developers and the subsequent talent shortage, low code is an ideal solution, offering organisations and their employees a way to better leverage their resources and promoting greater collaboration that results in more efficient workflows, creative, tailored applications and happier employees,” Cockerill said.