Will No-Code Replace Developers?

Will No-Code Replace Developers?

Simon Jenner

Thursday, 3 December 2020

Will the no-code trend replace traditional developers?

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When new founders first hear about no-code as an option to build their MVP, a common first reaction is, “What about coders? What will happen to them?”.
These are very legitimate questions, as no-code allows any internet user to become a citizen developer, breaking down the barriers to entry of the startup world.
Prior to the emergence of the No-Code Revolution, developers ruled. Founders’ had two options for creating a digital platform for their startups: spending an incredible amount of time learning how to code, or hiring an expensive coder to work on their project.
So, how will the emergence of no-code solutions, including low-code, affect the technological world’s need for coders and developers? First, let’s look at what no-code and low-code are.

No-code tools are designed for anyone looking to create a digital platform independently. Platforms like Bubble allow these users to create mobile and web applications with drag-and-drop widgets or simple click-to-place functionalities, no coding required. The caveat with no-code is that the user might eventually feel limited in their creativity and what they are able to accomplish, as they can only include the features that their platform-of-choice offers.
No-code has grown in popularity due to its accessibility. What once cost, on average, $75,000 and took 18 weeks to build and take to market with a traditional coder now costs less than $10,000 and can be launched within weeks.
Though this tool does not necessarily increase a founder’s chances of success, it does help them discover whether or not they will be successful within a much shorter time frame and much smaller price tag. Lower risk for the same outcome.

A common mistake is believing that low-code and no-code are the same. While no-code tools are created for anyone to use, low-code tools are made for use by developers and have some significant differences.
Low-code platforms do require a technical background, though have a focus on automation. Developers using low-code are able to drag-and-drop existing coding elements into a workflow, decreasing the amount of time spent hand-coding and writing repetitive lines of code when building a mobile or web application. In turn, this allows them to focus their saved time towards unique features in the application.

Developers’ Future in a World of No-Code
There is no doubt about it; no-code is democratising the startup world. However, hope is not entirely lost for the coders who have dedicated years of their lives to learning this skill.
Coders are still needed to code the back-end of no-code platforms in order to create the widgets and features offered to citizen developers. Similarly, no-code does not offer limitless creativity. As startups grow and succeed, many founders may eventually outgrow the offerings of the no-code platform they have chosen, then decide to work with a coder to create an entirely unique platform for their business.
It is also worth noting that the average user likely won’t get as much out of no-code platforms as those with technical backgrounds. As such, coders may become important to new no-code users as a resource for learning about the ins-and-outs of these platforms, ensuring that users can make the most of their no-code app. Further, as founders turn to no-code platforms to build their MVPs, coders and developers are left with more time to devote to innovative and creative projects that they previously did not have the time for.
In short, yes - no-code has the potential to replace coders, though it will not happen any time soon. Plenty of work for coders to accomplish still remains, much of which might even be more fulfilling than their previous repetitive coding tasks.
If you’d like to venture into no-code territory for building your own MVP, our MLabs team can provide you with all of the necessary tools. Sign up for our No-Code Bootcamp to get started.

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