OutSystems Announces Groundbreaking Advancements to Address the Growth of Citizen Development

Denver -  02 October 2019

Pro-code, low-code, and no-code – all-in-one platform supports the full spectrum of application development balancing IT control with citizen developer participation

OutSystems, provider of the number one low-code application development platform, today announced a breakthrough offering that supports the speed and agility of citizen development while giving IT the control and governance to ensure app quality. The new features allow non-IT roles to build a wide variety of applications that can be evolved within the platform to support large-scale, mission-critical business processes.

To address the growing demand for new digital solutions, IT is required to look outside of their development teams for help. Gartner predicts that by 2022, citizen developers will be building more than one-third of web and mobile employee-facing apps delivered in organizations with mature citizen development initiatives.*

In addition, the OutSystems 2019 Application Development Trends report found that, although the majority of low-code users are professional IT developers (69 percent), 44 percent are business users in collaboration with IT – in other words, citizen developers.

Citizen development is not a new concept. Self-service tools for non-IT have been around for decades,” said Márcio Spínola, vice president of product at OutSystems. “As expected, small departmental apps that solve real business problems can spread like wildfire. But very quickly, much of an organization’s most vital processes and data can spread across a number of different apps and systems that were never designed to be mission-critical. OutSystems now provides the first all-in-one platform that allows organizations to evolve these departmental apps to become enterprise-grade – without rewriting them.”

According to Gartner, to avoid simply recreating the problems of the past where legacy self-service tools like Lotus Notes and Microsoft Access lead to chaos, controls need to be in place. Jason Wong, VP analyst at Gartner, states that “IT must be involved in some aspect of citizen development; otherwise the activities are more akin to ‘shadow IT.’”**

“OutSystems roots are in serving the needs of pro developers, allowing them to develop and architect any type of solution – even critical business applications. We understand the challenges of architecting large-scale solutions serving millions of users, and we applied that knowledge to our new no-code tools to ensure that what is generated is robust and will not hit any walls,” continued Spínola. “Accompanying these is a unique governance tool that provides complete visibility into architectural issues across an entire portfolio of applications – AI infused to automatically anticipate and tackle problems before they happen.”

Part of the industry-leading OutSystems low-code development platform, these new no-code tools combine ease of use and governance in the following ways:

Rapidly creating new web and mobile experiences – A new Experience Builder abstracts away the complexities of assembling multiple pieces of the interfaces that make for an engaging, pixel-perfect mobile experience. This allows developers at any skill level to focus on what matters most: delivering great user experiences.

Automating business processes – A new Workflow Builder abstracts complex development processes into an easy-to-use wizard, making building digital solutions simple and accessible to everyone. This framework and editor enable both IT and non-IT users to automate workflows, reduce operational costs, and improve cross-departmental communication and visibility. Information scattered across an organization can be used to operate more efficiently.

Automatic architecture governance and refactoring – This feature provides intelligent architectural recommendations for apps, visibility into technical debt across a portfolio of apps, and AI-driven architecture refactoring to tackle problems early. Organizations can avoid the problem of growing technical debt, ensure reuse of IT-created services and components, and maintain agility with even the largest of applications.

* Gartner Market Guide for Rapid Mobile App Development Tools, Jason Wong
** Gartner Survey Analysis: Citizen Development Is Happening and IT Needs to Be More Engaged

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