Enterprises, on average, use about 1000 cloud apps, even though CIO think it’s only 30-40. As one can tell, the enterprise software landscape is complex. Organizations work with a wide range of applications that don’t speak to each other, look/work very unlike each other, often unable to even exist in the same tech environment.
This is especially true in the financial services industry, where banks and financial institutions are inching towards end-to-end digitization. COVID-19 has only hurried this digital transformation, forcing businesses to catch up or fall behind. In trying to balance the complexity and the hurry, organizations often lose out on building robust software.
While handling the minutiae, they forget the first principles.
In this article, we explore how low-code can help financial software builders focus on first principles to create robust, integrable and sustainable applications for their customers.
Software first principles
If you are building an enterprise application today, it must be:
- Built on a modern microservices-based architecture
- Cloud-native, containerized and deployable across multi-cloud environments
- Device agnostic and omnichannel-ready
- Easily integrable with Open APIs
- Focused on code security
How low-code helps you focus on first principles
“I think [low-code platforms are] probably the most important technology tool that CIOs need to look at. We do not have enough staff and our staff who are strong at App Dev really need to focus on the customer-facing pieces that are going to move the needle”, says Issac Sacolick of Star CIO. The fundamental benefit of a low-code framework is that it abstracts and automates the programming process to accelerate software development. In doing so, it helps you create applications that are consistent, integrable, sustainable and secure. Here’s how.
Low-code opens doors to modern architecture
By 2022, 90% of all apps will feature microservices architectures that improve the ability to design, debug, update, and leverage third-party code.
Development teams across the globe understand the advantages of microservices-based architecture, and are adopting it rapidly. But, among traditional development teams, this can be a tedious process. Modernizing monolithic legacy software or building new microservices-based products involves not just changes to development processes, but also setting up DevOps teams, changes to organizational culture etc.
Low-code systems can help leap past these obstacles. A robust low-code platform can help professional developers build microservices-based applications at scale.
Low-code enables reusability with components and prefabs
Developer time is wasted in repeatable processes. Be it basic UI templates or complex forms, tables and interactive charts, low-code frameworks can help automate parts of development. In fact, you can also generate from your own data model, and navigate through data and their relationships right from the low-code platform. This can come especially handy when ISVs need to rapidly customize their applications for each of their customers.
A low-code platform can help accelerate development with out-of-the-box widgets, templates, prefabs and more.
Low-code is prime for building cloud-native apps
A robust low-code platform can take you beyond just ‘cloud-ready’ development. With zero DevOps, auto-generated APIs, auto-scaling, app-sizing, proactive monitoring etc. Cloud-native low-code application development is now possible without a bastion of cloud experts on your team. It can also enable one-click deployment across multi-cloud or hybrid-cloud environments.
A low-code platform can automate many of the development and operational aspects of building cloud-native apps.
Low-code accelerates the development of omnichannel apps
Omni-channel customers spend an average of 4% more each time in the store and 10% more online than single-channel customers.
Financial software builders face pressure to build apps that offer a consistent and seamless omnichannel experience. Customers want to access information, make transactions, raise requests and speak to agents across their online banking solutions, mobile banking solutions and in-person channels. They want to have a continuous and engaged experience across them all.
To achieve this, traditional app development teams have a multi-functional team of mobile developers, web developers and core application developers replicating the application for each channel. Low-code tools eliminate the need for this, and create responsive applications by default. They also have built-in components and widgets that facilitate seamless engagement across channels.
By automating the adaptability and responsiveness of your app, low-code platforms accelerate superior omnichannel experiences, without corresponding investments.
Low-code platforms build integrable apps
Low-code abstracts a set of complex processes to accelerate development. APIs are an important part of that. They enable applications to access and consume vast amounts of data from multiple sources. They also integrate across upstream and downstream layers to connect information and application components. For instance, API helps banks or financial institutions to enable their services or share transaction data to a third party like Google Pay. It provides the flexibility of communication between two parties, increases workflow efficiency, enables real-time data sharing, and improves customer experience.
A low-code platform can help financial software builders make apps with composable APIs from underlying services and entities.
Low-code helps build secure applications from the start
The auto-generation of code in low-code tools brings with it security measures built-in at all application layers. With a good low-code platform, you can configure compliance levels, customize authentication and authorization, and even enable platform-driven automatic upgrades free from security vulnerabilities.
For instance, code generated by WaveMaker, our low-code platform, is open standards-based. The platform enables secure coding practices making apps hardened for penetration testing and enterprise-grade security. Given that it’s also ‘Veracode™ Verified’, WaveMaker drastically reduces the time developers spend in rounding off security for their apps. This verification covers third-party open-source libraries you use to generate code and all vulnerability checks listed in the CVE library. In all, it significantly de-risks application teams from compliance and security issues, without compromising on speed of delivery.
A low-code platform enables organizations to incorporate security at every stage of application development.
Choosing the right low-code platform for building
If you’re an independent software vendor developing software for the financial services industry, a robust low-code platform can accelerate your product development, and enable rapid customizations at scale. To gain maximum leverage from your low-code platform, make sure they empower you to focus on first principles.
- Ensure that your platform is attuned to building cloud-ready apps. Look for a platform that can automate containerization, enable DevOps and ease cloud deployments.
- Check the API capabilities of the low-code platform. Make sure it can enable integrations that are closer to business functions, giving standardized access to org data and services.
- Try the reusable components.
- Understand the limitations of the reusable components and prefabs included in the platform.
- Check if compliant third-party components can be integrated.
- Ensure you can create customized components and make them reusable within your organization.
- Verify security standards. Test the credibility of the product by checking for industry-standard certifications. Look for the protocols that govern authentication, authorization, protection against the 10 OWASP vulnerabilities etc.
For all these and more, consider WaveMaker.