Remember when low-code was only a peripheral presence in the application platform as a service (aPaaS) market? At Mendix, we’ve seen first-hand low-code grow up and enter the enterprise, as businesses are using it to solve for a broad variety of use cases.

Analysts tasked with evaluating the low-code market have also witnessed, ranked, and scored each vendor’s response to this trend. At every stage of low-code’s evolution, Mendix has been recognized for our leadership and vision. And with Gartner’s new Magic Quadrant for Enterprise Low-Code Application Platforms (LCAP), this year is no different, as they’ve named us a leader as the most visionary vendor in the MQ for the third year in a row!

That’s all well and good, and we’re proud of the accomplishment. But this achievement is a reflection of where we are now.

Let’s talk about what’s next.

Enterprise low-code

What if you could use a platform that speeds up application delivery, fosters collaboration between business and IT, and provides the controls to put software development in the hands of less technical developers? And what if you could do this without compromising security, scalability, and long-term maintainability? That, in a nutshell, is what low-code should be all about.

In discussing this year’s Enterprise LCAP MQ in contrast to its predecessor (the MQ for high-productivity Platform as a Service or hpaPaas), Gartner observed that low-code platforms are now addressing the core needs of enterprise IT teams to deliver business applications.  Further, low-code has become a viable alternative for pre-cloud platform stacks (such as Java and .NET frameworks). Fast-forward a year and it is clear that this trend is accelerating.

Why is that?

Businesses around the globe are looking to capitalize on the growing opportunities brought by digitization. We now live in a software-driven world. And while the demand for business applications is outstripping supply by a factor of five, CIOs and IT leaders are competing for talent to get this elusive full-stack developer (whoever he or she may be) onboard, or fighting for data scientists and machine learning experts to join their teams. With 1.9 percent unemployment rate of software engineers in the U.S., it’s an unfair, lopsided battle.

So, I’ll ask again, what if you could use a platform that increases application delivery and encourages and nurtures collaboration between business and IT all while doing it at scale? That’s what Mendix is all about.

Low-code is being adopted at scale in the enterprise. Low-code application platforms have rapidly matured to support increasingly complex use cases, past straightforward departmental level applications.  Today, we see low-code delivering mission-critical core systems, supporting a microservices architecture, rich integration options, the use of AI and cognitive services, and multi-channel front-ends.

Across the board we see three use cases for low-code that help customers solve business needs:

  1. Enhancing Customer Engagement
  2. Launching New Products & Services
  3. Creating Smarter / Digital Operations

By naming us a leader, Gartner validates our product strategy. With our platform, organizations of all sizes, especially large businesses, can use low-code to solve the above business needs like building customer self-service portals, launching data-driven, bespoke solutions, and utilizing new technology like augmented reality. We support a range of deployment options: on-premises, virtual private multi-cloud, and multitenant public cloud. We believe our quality of service can be attributed to our platform’s autoscaling, high availability, and low latency for failover.

Our vision is that everyone will be a software maker. Whether you’re a professional developer, use a little code, or no code at all, we believe a low-code platform should enable you to make software at the speed of ideas. Our vision for low-code can be summarized in three themes:

Make with More

To address talent scarcity, organizations are seeking to both increase the productivity of core IT, and to broaden the talent pool in the business of individuals able to experiment, innovate, build, and deploy apps. So, a low-code platform should cover the entire spectrum from citizen to professional developers, and to do, without compromising the right level of governance, security, availability, scalability, and maintainability of the application portfolio.

That’s why we offer purpose-built tools to support the spectrum of developers to maximize their domain expertise and technical ability. It’s great to see Gartner recognizing our visionary move in this area. We’re one of the first vendors that offer an IDE for developers of all skills and talents: Studio for business developers, and Studio Pro for professional IT developers.

Another way organizations are seeking to address the talent scarcity is through AI-assisted development.

We were the first low-code vendor to introduce AI-assisted development in 2018, and now, with the second generation of Mendix Assist supporting advanced patterns and auto-completion, we continue to lead the pack. Mendix Assist’s algorithm is derived from analyzing millions of anonymized models across thousands of applications that have been deployed on Mendix and has a 95 percent success rate with recommended first actions by Mendix Assist.

Make it Smart

The nature of enterprise applications is changing significantly and has had to respond accordingly. The classical notion of a three-tier architecture for the user to process transactions is disappearing. Modern applications are intelligent, pro-active, and context-aware. The shift to smart apps is propelled by the following trends:

  • IoT and the digitization of business – The raw data coming from sensors and smart devices requires filtering to improve signal-to-noise as well as real-time analytics so that apps become more responsive to real-world conditions and opportunities.
  • Real-time business – Digital enterprises are inherently real-time and event-driven. Enterprises that understand this will adopt platforms that enable them to compose applications from in-house and 3rd party services to drive better business outcomes.
  • Artificial Intelligence – AI makes applications smarter, contextual, and pro-active, providing better and more useful information while performing sophisticated automated tasks on behalf of users. AI is allowing computers to see, hear, read, and understand, which will have a profound impact on business.
  • New Forms of Interaction – We are entering a radical shift from classic app UI models to new styles of multi-experience UX including conversational and voice interfaces as well as augmented reality services. Oh, and by the way, Mendix is also a Leader in Gartner’s MQ for multi-experience development platforms.

Make at Scale

The adoption of low-code platforms for a broad range of application initiatives calls for platforms to support enterprise needs focusing on:

  • Discoverable enterprise, allowing developers to discover and (re-)use data and business events available within the organization as well as from external sources;
  • Flexible application architectures, ranging from simple for a departmental level workflow app, to advanced microservices architecture for large mission-critical core systems;
  • Self-service, for (auto-)scaling, high availability, failover, fallback, and security services inherited through a cloud-native core platform architecture;
  • Multi-cloud deployment, offering the flexibility to deploy workloads across public and (virtual) private clouds in line with regulatory requirements and corporate policies;
  • Extensibility, allowing developers, DevOps engineers and admins to take lower-level control beyond the abstraction that LCAPs provide;
  • Application landscape management, with configurable CI/CD, pipeline management and monitoring services to effectively and efficiently manage the portfolio.

Easily creating enterprise-worthy apps for an advanced architecture support? That’s how you make at scale.  Gartner — and more importantly, our customers — recognize our strengths here. We received high scores for enterprise-worthiness as well as ease of use by professional developers.

Enabling entire enterprises to Go make it.

Application development for the enterprise (or for anything, for that matter) shouldn’t have to be a slog. Development at all levels should be easy, it should be fun, and it should bring value to your business.

I cannot think of anything better than the joy of making something from nothing and having the result in your hands and seeing the business value so quickly.

At Mendix World 2019, our CTO Johan den Haan, took to the stage to discuss how you can make apps smart, make apps with more, and make apps at scale. At the center of it all are the people building the application, whether it’s a professional developer or citizen developer. den Haan states, “I cannot think of anything better than the joy of making something from nothing and having the result in your hands and seeing the business value so quickly. Once we enable our customers to participate in the creative process, Mendix’s new platform becomes…a story about technology leadership and business empowerment.”

This is what’s next.

Want to see some other reasons we’re the leader in low-code? Click the banner below to download the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Enterprise Low-Code Application Platform.