The Path to Widespread Adoption of No-Code Platforms in Africa

July 10, 2024

Our Partner, Yair Lezer, shared his insight on the potential of no-code development platforms for Africa in an article published on CIO Africa.

No-code development platforms allow software applications to be created through graphical user interfaces and drag-and-drop configurations.

Technology is considered key in the development of a better future for Africa with calls for the creation of African-born technology applications increasing by the day. In this case, the adoption of no-code development platforms in the continent holds immense promise.

No-code development platforms allow software applications to be created through graphical user interfaces and drag-and-drop configurations. No traditional programming or coding skills are generally required to use such platforms, which is an attractive selling point for Africa. This allows local technology teams to design software applications with the workflows, dashboards, and reports that support the needs of their organizations.

Along with many potential benefits, this adoption of no-code development platforms also comes with its challenges. Understanding and addressing these challenges is crucial for the widespread adoption and successful implementation of these platforms across the continent.


Market Need and Potential Benefits

Many enterprises, from private businesses to large corporations to government organizations, are struggling to keep up with the latest technologies needed to support new market requirements and customer expectations. In fact,  across Africa most companies are using outdated technologies that are difficult to configure and do not support their operations. The outcome of it is that African organizations are often forced to adjust their practices to the limitations of their software. This then causes organizations to miss out on important opportunities to better engage customers and generate revenue.

CIO Africa recently spoke with Yair Lezer, a Partner at the business acceleration and project management consulting firm Noteya Innovations, about the potential benefits of no-code development platforms for Africa.

“The concept of no-code platforms is opening a completely new horizon for Africa. Local technology teams can quickly obtain the know-how for design and development on no-code platforms and rapidly develop much-needed technology solutions, faster and cheaper than previously possible,” Lezer explained.

He sees potential for no-code platforms at government, municipal, and healthcare organizations in Africa, especially for new service projects and project management initiatives. He recommends that technology teams need to develop tailored software solutions matching the local requirements, thus keeping costs lower, solution efficient, and knowledge local.


Challenges and Solutions

Limited internet bandwidth, low trust levels in cloud solutions, and unfamiliarity with SaaS models are some of the key obstacles for the advancement of any new technology in Africa. Additionally, there is a general lack of confidence among African CIOs and CTOs in their organizations’ ability to master new approaches to technology.

Yaniv Shimony, CEO of Origami, a company that provides no-code development platforms, told CIO Africa that his company can help address and overcome these challenges.

In their case, for instance, Origami focuses on localization and extensive customization options. According to Shimony, the company provides support for multiple languages and regional configurations, making the platform able to meet specific needs of African businesses. Shimony also emphasizes the importance of building a supportive community through local partnerships and dedicated customer service.

“We equip our users with intuitive tools and a user-friendly interface, making complex task management both efficient and effective. At the heart of our mission is the drive to make sophisticated technology accessible and adaptable, helping businesses overcome growth barriers and operational inefficiencies,” Shimony remarked.

The software applications developed on the Origami platform typically replace or integrate with silo-based legacy systems. This allows for better data consistency and integration.

“Data silos are slowing digital transformation initiatives, meaning many industries cannot participate fully in a modern economy. No-code solutions, however, could make a critical difference in maximizing the potential of digital transformation projects,” Lezer further added.


Future Outlook and Economic Impact

The future of no-code development platforms in Africa is bright as both Lezer and Shimony predict. They both see these platforms as “game changers” that will drive technological and economic advancements. The ability to develop applications quickly and cost-effectively will empower local businesses and stimulate economic growth.

Thabile Ntobongwana, the Chief Technology Officer at Snow Stone Trading in South Africa also sees that the future could be bright for no-code development platforms in Africa. He says that by involving more people in technological innovation, no-code platforms can help address unemployment and promote a more inclusive economy.

“A region like South Africa, especially in the Eastern Cape, has low levels of digital literacy and basic technology understandings. So these no-code platforms will open up opportunities for more people to get involved in innovation development and initiatives. Pushing innovation and championing technology projects with no-code platforms can also create job opportunities and activate the economy,” Ntobongwana said.

Overcoming the challenges to widespread adoption of no-code development platforms in Africa requires a concerted effort from all stakeholders. By focusing on localization, education, and robust support, these platforms can unlock new opportunities for technological and economic development. With strategic implementation and risk management, no-code platforms like Origami are set to transform the African market.

To read the original article, please visit CIO Africa.