Career tip of the decade: Get up to speed on no-code.
Sure, no-code isn’t new. Heck, it can be said that Excel started it all back in 1985 by empowering spreadsheet-savvy people at work with the ability to record macros and intersheet dependencies. And making Excel magic is an enduring business skill to this day. But here’s the scoop: Just like the popularity—and ubiquity—of Excel at work, working with no-code platforms is about to become a mainstream, must-have business—even life—skill.
Today, you’ll find that low- and no-code development and automation tools have already taken development and IT teams by storm, and will only accelerate in prevalence. Low- and no-code tools have delivered instant value by automating and speeding up essential tasks for time-strapped developers and IT, thereby recovering much-needed bandwidth to tackle critical and creative work.
But the no-code revolution is already breaking away from its tech-tool persona. No-code is reaching every corner of the enterprise—and you want to be on the no-code train as it picks up steam on track to be a $65B industry in less than 5 years.
Do you know how to use a computer? It’s not even a question today, but, going back to our Microsoft history lesson for a second, proficiency in Microsoft Office was the essential modern workplace skill for the first two decades of the century. For the next decade? Proficiency with no-code applications is the competitive advantage that will soon be an essential prerequisite for work.
“In the same way that PCs democratized software usage, APIs democratized software connectivity and the cloud democratized the purchase and deployment of software, no code will usher in the next wave of enterprise innovation by democratizing technical skill sets. This profound generational shift has the power to touch every software market and every user across the enterprise.”
–Alex Nichols, Vice President at CapitalG (Alphabet's growth fund)
The hurdle is no longer knowing how to operate a computer and the myriad of applications you need to get work done. You know how to do it all (and if you don’t know an application yet, intuitive UX makes it pretty simple to hit the ground running). The new question is, do you know how to set up a program to get work done automatically?
Don’t be thrown off by the word ‘code’—the whole point is the ‘no’ part. This is like the transition from command line to GUI. No-code is your chance to access the power of code without ever seeing any code at all. If you’ve ever used a WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) editor or created a survey, you’ve already used no-code tools.
No-code is fundamentally a new type of user interface (UI). No code platforms work by presenting building blocks of code in a graphical interface that business users can manipulate.
No-code is an abstraction step above the code itself, allowing users to create and “code” by point-and-click. The complexity of computer language, or code, is presented instead as visual or “drag-and-drop” workflows, empowering business users to build and apply programs to automate, integrate, and streamline their work.
The no-code movement is driven by the belief that technology ought to enable everyone, not be a barrier to entry. So no-code technology is about giving business users access to capabilities and tools that were only available to technical users before, giving rise to the new citizen developer within organizations.
There are no-code tools for nearly everything. Sites such as No Code List demonstrate the breadth of no-code platforms on offer to help you build whatever you want without so much as thinking about code.
Any constraints on the flexibility and complexity no-code platforms can handle are rapidly disappearing, as no-code platforms close the gaps to addressing nearly any business use case and scenario. No-code does not mean you are limited only to templates and simplistic use cases; complex apps, integrations, and even data science are within reach.
Perhaps the highest-value no-code skill you can learn is AI.
It’s a dynamite duo: Combine two of the highest-potential movements in technology today, AI and no-code, and you could say you’ve got the keys to the digital universe…or at least to end-to-end automation.
Automation of everyday individual and business workflows almost inevitably runs into the barrier of unstructured data like information within emails, chats, contracts, images, and video. No-code AI for unstructured data processing eliminates that barrier.
Just like no-code platforms for every other type of work, no-code AI for unstructured data processing enables business users with visual tools, in this case to harness AI models, no PhD required.
There couldn’t be an easier bandwagon to get on. No-code represents a tech movement that’s decidedly non-technical by design. Get on board now and capitalize on the open fields of no-code opportunity.