In a striking example of how the low-code revolution is one of the most powerful forces shaping the business-technology landscape today, low-code solutions were included in 20 out of 20 of ServiceNow’s largest Q2 deals, CEO Bill McDermott said recently.
That anecdote underscores a tectonic shift in which businesses are becoming not only consumers of software made by the tech industry, but also creators of their own unique technology to meet the new and digital-first demands of the acceleration economy.
Speaking at a Goldman Sachs investors conference last month, McDermott highlighted the inclusion of low-code technology in all of those top Q2 deals as an extension of ServiceNow’s founding principles.
“ServiceNow actually was a low-code platform to begin with,” McDermott said during his Q&A session with Goldman Sachs analyst Kash Rangan. “That’s what it was. It just so happened that IT people saw the magic in it and that’s where we made our fastest advancements.
“But it could have easily been in the employee experience, the customer service experience, or you could have just put it out there as a platform that people could build on. What’s interesting now is all those things have come together at once.
“And if you think about business and you think about digital transformation, 80% of the digital transformation efforts out there don’t pay off—and you might ask, ‘Why is that?’
“And the answer is integration. One system doesn’t integrate well with another system, and ultimately, these integration challenges of clunky 20th-century architectures get in the way of a good digital transformation idea.”
Flipping from that complex past into the future, McDermott sees low-code technology as an essential component for companies making the transition to digital businesses.
In May, we offered this perspective from McDermott in a piece called Bill McDermott’s 10-Step Plan for High-Flying ServiceNow to Reach $15 Billion:
“In the digital-business era, differentiation can’t be bought—instead, it must be built. IDC has forecasted that 750 million net new applications will be created between 2023 and 2025. With that kind of unprecedented demand for net new innovation together with a global shortage of professional developers, low-code application development is a massive market opportunity…. And ultimately, this creative workflow is massive because the number of applications that will be developed in the next three years supersedes the number that has been built in the last half-century. And there are not enough engineers in the world to do that, and they’re doing that in record numbers on ServiceNow.”
So, that would equate to somewhere around 650,000 new apps being built every single day for the next three years — and by any measure, that’s a massive challenge for companies to handle in terms of not only the low-code tech that’s required but also hiring the right type of talent to deliver all those real-time apps and fostering the culture of creation, not just consumption.