Commercial-Off-The-Shelf Software vs. Low-Code Development

There was a time, when, if businesses had to choose from off-the-shelf software or custom-develop solutions, they would pick the former without a second thought. The reason being, it was more cost-effective, faster to implement, customizable, and came with support, whereas the latter required an internal IT team to develop, maintain and run the software.

The latter would, in fact, necessitate additional spending on purchasing software tools to develop, test, and deploy the code, with constant upgrades needed to meet the growing needs of the company. It would require documentation to ensure business continuity even if the developers leave and new ones take their place.

Today, though, the answer may not be so straightforward. Some of the advantages of COTS – Commercial Off-the-Shelf software continue to hold true, but the tools for custom development have undergone a massive change. Some of the earlier limitations no longer exist or have become negligible. Advantages have gone up, pushing businesses to consider custom development with low code.

Cases in Point

One of Indium Software’s clients is a pioneer in precision healthcare with progressive research and development. To facilitate interactions between physicians and patients from across hospitals, research centers, universities, and advanced community sites, and to meet its specialized business requirements, the client wanted to develop proprietary technology for diagnosis. It partnered with Indium to turn its business requirements into live functionality.

Indium adopted Robust Application Development (RAD) to improve the reach of R&D in precision medicine. The Agile POD team focused on quality checks on the features developed for every sprint by an integrated quality assurance. This resulted in reduced technical debt and higher quality output on each build. Integrating the performance monitoring and testing throughout the project ensured efficiency,consistent and better database retrieval performance as part of the project.

In another use case, Indium Software proposed Mendix for the end-to-end development of a platform for a real estate aggregator. It allowed agent onboarding, messaging, chatting, and email communication. It also enabled property listing with pictures and customization of each search function for faster and more accurate discovery. Around 20,000 agents were quickly onboarded to deliver a strong digital experience for the users. The complete ecosystem was built on a microservice architecture to enable better scalability and reliability of software.

For more details and information about Indium’s expertise in low code services


Why Opt for Low-Code Instead of COTS

COTS software is advantageous to businesses for several reasons.

  • It is easily available.
  • The costs are predictable. It is typically taken as annual licensing as there is very little customization possible, and this is a long-term cost after the implementation.
  • It is ideal for businesses that need a simple, straightforward solution that fits their needs.
  • Complex systems can be deployed quickly, and the solution could be up and running in a few days.
  • The vendor takes care of support, updates, and patches. The update takes place in the background, with minimal or no disruption to the business.

However, one size does not fit all. For businesses requiring specific functionality or objectives, it may not be the best solution. Moreover, since the COTS software is developed for a wide range of applications, it may have features that are redundant for specific purposes. This can add to the costs and make it unwieldy. As the business grows and expands, its needs will also evolve, making this investment incompatible, difficult to integrate with new tools, and noncompliant.

Low-code development helps overcome many of these challenges and bestows many advantages. Some of these include:

  • Low-code platforms such as Mendix enable adopting a visual approach to development. Its intuitive drag-and-drop interface allows even technically unskilled business users to quickly develop features and applications that meet their needs better.
  • It incorporates reusable components that shorten the development time. There is a large community of developers contributing to the component’s library (Marketplace), which is available for reuse. Indium’s marketplace components are prefixed with IndiuMX.
  • The communication tools integrated with the development platform facilitate collaboration.
  • These features also lower the cost of development, providing businesses with greater control over their product.
  • It enables the creation of highly customized software that will help solve specific business problems.
  • Low code integrates with the IT infrastructure easily. Its microservices approach also makes it flexible and scalable, allowing software to evolve along with the business.
  • Mendix provides tools for the application development lifecycle, enabling streamlining of requirements management, project management, version control, testing, and deployment, amongst others.
  • Developers can also use agile development practices and DevOps tools to shorten the development cycle and speed up the time to market.

For More Info, Kindly Check out Our Success Story

Indium Software for Low Code Development

Indium Software provides low-code development for facilitating innovation, experimentation, and faster delivery of enterprise-grade apps. Indium has built a team of Mendix experts who have more than 5 years of experience developing low-code solutions for businesses to achieve in months which earlier took years.

We enable the following:

  • Empower businesses by setting up Mendix architecture and design to establish a robust architectural foundation
  • Handpicked Mendix App Development experts assist in the development of web, mobile (hybrid & native), UI/UX solutions
  • Our Mendix QA team assists in end-to-end testing using the Mendix test suite and shift-up QA model
  • We are a Mendix Reseller Partner who can help with your licensing needs

We have more than two decades of experience in the development of cutting-edge software, application modernization, and data analytics. Our formidable strength in software development, DevOps, and low-code development is a winning combination aimed to launch you on your next trajectory of growth. To know more, visit Click Here


Does low code mean no coding?

Definitely, there is a reduction in manual programming, but low-code apps contain codes generated by the platform using visual models. The platform can be extended with manual programming for edge cases without a reusable component.

Does low-code development need special skills?

Low-code platforms allow business users to develop the small scale apps they need quickly and without training. It can also be used to create enterprise grade applications with experienced developers. .

Author: Indium
Indium Software is a leading digital engineering company that provides Application Engineering, Cloud Engineering, Data and Analytics, DevOps, Digital Assurance, and Gaming services. We assist companies in their digital transformation journey at every stage of digital adoption, allowing them to become market leaders.