April 17, 2023

Launching a Low-Code Practice: What you Need to Know, Pt. 2


8base has the opportunity to work closely with agency leads as they introduce or refine their low-code practice. Below are some of our clients' honest impressions regarding how their businesses — and opinions on low code — are evolving.

How others are faring

Creating evangelists out of skeptics

Josh Clements, Managing Director of Integris Group, told us something I’ve heard frequently: “Developers don’t want to use low-code platforms because they love to code everything on their own. But what is amazing, once they get into it, they start to say, ‘Oh, now I understand.’”

Chris Fowler, CEO and co-founder of AscendWare.net, started the company six years ago based upon low-code technologies and shared that their developers also came around on low-code development. “That shifting perspective is helping with employee retention. The less time you spend under the hood, working on really low-level development in programming, the more time you can focus on value and the customer problem,” said Fowler. 

Clements echoed that low code allows his company’s developers to shift to more strategic tasks. However, he admits that even he was doubtful of the productivity promises. “I started as a developer over 20 years ago, so I was very much of the mindset of it's better to build,” he said. “In fact, I came from an organization where we didn't integrate anything. You build it, then deploy it, so you have full control over it.”

“I wouldn't say I've ever successfully used any other low-code platform out there, but I’ve seen how the limitations of a platform are a barrier to achievement. With 8base, we haven't encountered any of those barriers. Usually, you expect to get 80% of what you want with low code; the other 20% is nearly impossible and you just burn a ton of time trying to accomplish it. We have not encountered that 20% at all since transitioning to 8base.”

Improving project productivity

Mihir Shah, an ITWox co-founder, takes the time to break down the advantages of using low code. “We use a very simple analogy: the construction of a house. And what we try to illustrate is that when you're building a house, you have to build the foundation and you have to build the plumbing. What 8base offers is that plumbing, which you won't have to change every day. But it's something foundational that’s necessary for a successful home build-out.”

Shah’s ITWox co-founder, Navin Chaganty, had similar thoughts. “For any production-grade application, you need to build a back end, you need to build infrastructure on AWS, and you need to have a database somewhere. Someone to administer it, someone to model it correctly, too. Then you need to figure out how to translate that into an API. And we have not yet touched the frontend side of things, how it's going to be consumed, what security and access policies you need. With 8base, you're acquiring the flexibility to have these already baked into the product and free you up to make faster changes.”

Clements agrees that using a platform like 8base eliminates the requirement of building a back end and many aspects of a front end. “If you're strictly building a web app and a back end, 30% or more of the app is effectively done for you. That ultimately translates into additional resources for us as an agency and reduced financial investment for the client.”

Unlocking low code’s potential

Regarding AscendWare’s core business, 8base has proved invaluable in winning over prospects who’ve tried traditional development environments, and possibly experimented with low code themselves, but could not leverage low code as fast as AscendWare could offer. 

“Many of our customers came to us because they tried and invested in a certain platform, only to find out after much effort it could not meet their business requirements,” said Fowler. “They could not see the platform limitations or roadblocks until they were deep into a project. We solved this with a low-code 8base solution.”

Abdul Karmach, AscendWare.net co-founder and CTO said, “We founded the company doing low code but hopped around different platforms quite a bit because they all had critical limitations and dead ends. We needed low-code, but also complete flexibility — and that’s precisely what 8base provides. In my opinion, 8base offers a perfect sweet spot of backend low-code speed with total flexibility on the frontend. It allows us to build any application while dramatically reducing the expense and labor.” 

“When AscendWare built solutions on other low code platforms, we eventually hit a brick wall,” said Fowler. “Each platform had some limitations such as enterprise permissions, security, or not being able to change the user interface, etc. 8base has dramatically helped with that because we get all the benefits of low code but have yet to find a roadblock. “After analyzing many low-code platforms, we've settled on one. And now we're moving everything to 8base. That has to tell you something.”

The metrics that matter

The Technology & Services Industry Association (TSIA) recently published that most of the growth in the T&S 50 comes from services. According to their State Of The Technology Industry 2022 report, professional services firms are seeing a revenue growth rate of 32%.

Furthermore, TSIA’s Future of Technology Professional Services ebook identified areas where service providers can decrease costs and increase revenue. Their list includes gross margin, client satisfaction, productivity, staff utilization, and more. 

Conversations with 8base prospects and clients delve into how they should assess the viability of a low-code practice. A low-code platform impacts all the key metrics and moves big financial levers inside their firm.

How to measure the success of a low-code practice

Getting started with 8base

8base’s low-code platform can make a difference to you, your clients, and your team.

We’re the first full-stack, low-code solution for JavaScript developers. Most low-code platforms are built for enterprise developers. 8base is built for the world’s almost 17.5 million JavaScript developers.
We offer GraphQL’s API-first architecture. While exposing APIs is secondary to most other low-code platforms, 8base auto-generates a powerful GraphQL API that can be used by 8base App Builder or custom web and mobile applications.
You can drop into code anywhere. 8base lets you develop visually but enables developers to drop into code when necessary or desired.
You can build any digital product. Unlike traditional low-code platforms built for internal, form-based applications, 8base enables the development of rich user experiences needed for client-facing applications.
We have a different kind of pricing model. Almost all low-code products charge per end-user, which renders them unusable for consumer-facing apps and digital products. 8base’s pricing structure makes any application use case possible at any level of affordability.

Ready to try 8base?

We're excited about helping you achieve amazing results.