The global workforce is in the midst of a Great Resignation—65% of employees are looking for a new job and 88% of organizations are experiencing higher than normal turnover. In addition, some estimates suggest more than 50% of workers are struggling with burnout, an increase from a reported 43% pre-pandemic. As a result, employers are finding it harder than ever to retain and attract new talent, and are looking for any and every method to ease their pain.
The Growing Worker Skills Gap
Compounding the hiring issue is the increasing challenge of the worker skills gap. Seventy-one percent of managers with open positions have reported receiving applications from workers who don’t have the right skills to fill those positions, while 82% of managers with open positions said they would be willing to hire a candidate who would require some initial training to do their job. Today’s hiring market is extremely challenging, particularly for companies struggling to fill their need for team members with technical skills, such as developers and IT experts.
One of the most potentially fruitful avenues to bridge the skills gap—and larger hiring challenges—is reskilling. While not always top of mind for employers, reskilling plays a crucial role in retaining and attracting talent. Organizations that invest in employees’ professional development are more likely to be successful at retaining staff. According to a recent study, 62% of employees reported that additional training and learning made them more motivated to work, while 45% cited upskilling and reskilling opportunities as reasons to stay with their current employer.
As it happens, reports suggest that more than 70% of enterprises in the U.S., China and Europe have adopted low-code tooling—which offers users a level of abstraction and requires little to no coding to build applications and processes—to address their pandemic-accelerated need for digital transformation. In addition to coding bootcamps and e-learning organizations, low-code tools have emerged as an important avenue for business users to easily reskill and upskill.
Low-code automation in particular gives even non-technical business users the power to automate complex business processes that not only increase productivity, but also remove the limitations of their current software tools and give them the power to rapidly scale their operations and pave a path for significant future growth. As organizations continue to live through the “SaaS explosion,” an unstoppable proliferation of new software tools that companies continue to acquire, line-of-business (LOB) employees increasingly struggle with the growing technical debt of using more and more software applications that perform certain functions well, but also collectively add operational gaps to their daily routines.
Reskilling with low-code platforms offers companies the crucial benefit of offloading the development burden on IT teams. As LOB users self-service their own technical challenges, their colleagues in IT can refocus on more strategic initiatives. On the whole, low-code platforms can introduce entirely new levels of operational efficiency within an organization.
The impending collision of skills gaps, IT backlogs and the SaaS explosion are leading to a future in which low-code tool utilization will be table stakes.
Low-Code’s Role in Reskilling the Workforce
As low-code adoption continues to increase, so will the democratization of technology, along with the power to manage complex technical processes and data. With low-code tooling, non-technical LOB users can manage even sophisticated data manipulation processes that were once reserved for experienced engineers. Gartner predicts that “citizen developers” who use low-code tools, rather than traditional coding, will soon outnumber professional coders four to one. Companies must reimagine traditional career structures as low-code platforms empower citizen developers to take on technical tasks and reskill on the job.
Businesses that embrace reskilling through low-code tooling can expect to realize these valuable benefits:
- Improved IT resourcing. With low-code tooling, companies can offload the development burden of maintaining their tech estate onto LOB users. As a result, IT teams can redeploy their scarce resources on higher-level priorities, such as digital transformation and infosec initiatives.
- Operational efficiency that speeds innovation. Reskilled employees can use low-code platforms to develop custom workflows that empower them and their departments to efficiently navigate daily tasks and focus on higher-level strategy.
- Increased employee retention. Companies that teach their teams to use low-code platforms provide value to their employees and enable employees to learn new skills that prepare them to grow into new roles within the organization.
- Closed gaps in worker skill. A significant challenge posed by the worker skills gap is the inability to perform mission-critical tasks consistently and efficiently using a company’s available tools. With low-code platforms, employees are better positioned to not only execute their daily tasks, but also to solve their own technical challenges and drive additional value from their current toolset.
What to Look for in a Low-Code Solution
Low-code automation plays a key role in lowering the barriers to digital innovation in the face of a rapidly evolving workplace. When looking for a low-code solution, it’s important for companies to take the following into consideration:
- Power and flexibility: The best low-code platforms are powerful enough to manage even massive data jobs, while offering deep customization for technical and non-technical users to solve for their exact use cases.
- Scalability: As organizations increasingly look to build their futures on low-code platforms, it’s important to ensure they aren’t building on legacy architecture. Modern solutions generally use serverless architecture to allow for indefinite scalability and to avoid tethering data limits due to server-based limitations.
- Security: The best low-code solutions offer enterprise-grade security. SOC 2 is the gold standard for security certification and is a must-have for rapidly growing businesses and for enterprises. The best solutions are also compliant with important data privacy regulations, such as GDPR, CCPA and HIPAA.
Companies should get proactive when it comes to adopting low-code automation platforms. Low-code is emerging as a key competitive advantage across the organization—not only in addressing today’s hiring and retention crisis, but also in opening new avenues for business innovation and growth.