With the rise of PowerApps, Microsoft’s low code application development platform, a lot of organizations are starting to explore this new way of building business applications. In case you are interested too, it’s important to understand the benefits of using PowerApps within your organization.
If you don’t yet have a clear view on what PowerApps actually is, we suggest to first read our blog post ‘Overview of Microsoft PowerApps‘.
Benefit 1: Agility of software delivery
Building new software or performing modifications to existing software can often be a hassle. It takes a lot of time, specific competences and multiple cycles to deliver what was expected. PowerApps will drastically increase the speed of delivering business apps. How?
First of all because it reduces the amount of competences you need to build it. Learning PowerApps is way easier than learning how to code in one or even multiple languages. In fact, you can compare it to using excel & access. This is also one of the reasons why Microsoft is aiming at power users & roles like a business analyst to become the “app builders of the future”.
Second, PowerApps comes with a big number of out-of-the-box connections to multiple SaaS (and even on-premise) applications. This allows organizations to drastically reduce the amount of custom built interfaces (which means: less time, less competences)
Even though you have much more capabilities of integrating with other applications, I’m convinced that with the standard connections, you can get far in building advanced business apps.
Benefit 2: Enterprise mobility & cloud
Even though a lot of your employees are fully mobile in their private lives, the business environmentis still lacking in mobility when it comes to business apps. A main reason is that the applications themselves are not ‘mobile’ proof (even the ones which are mobile proof often only work on one operating system at the time such as Windows, Android or iOS).
Business apps that are built with PowerApps are immediately mobile & cloud proof. Once you have finished building your app, it is very easy to distribute it to any smartphone, tablet, laptop & desktop computer. The only thing you need is the PowerApps client & your user license and you are ready to use the app!
For sure this will allow organizations to speed up their roadmap to mobility and the cloud.
Benefit 3: Cost allocations and savings
As mentioned in the first benefit, a software development (& management) lifecycle can be quite complex. It’s not a surprise that complexity brings a high cost of building and maintaining your ICT landscape.
PowerApps will, through faster delivery and out-of-the-box connections & functions, reduce the cost of building and maintaining business apps. However, it also means a shift in budget allocation, from traditional ICT budget to a mixed budget for powerusers & analysts.
In the end, organizations can expect a faster/higher ROI by using PowerApps.
Benefit 4: Bigger fit between the business process & the application
One of the biggest pitfalls in a software delivery project is the mismatch between what was needed & what is delivered. (Read: needed, not asked for… A good analyst is capable of catching the essence of what the business really needs). Nevertheless, the needs still must be translated into functional requirements, a technical design & architecture, and a briefing towards the developers. You guessed it: a lot of stakeholders can allow for misinterpretations of business needs!
Again, PowerApps will significantly reduce this gap. I’m not saying it will vanish, however as the powerusers & analysts are capable of building their apps themselves (with support from IT) it will decrease the number of involved stakeholders and thus reduce the possibility for misunderstandings.
A second important argument is the combination of PowerApps and Microsoft Flow. Flow allows you an IFTTT (If this then that) approach to model & automate your business processes. This means that the same powerusers & analysts will be in control of mapping their own processes.
Benefit 5: Bridging the gap between business and ICT
Everyone knows these funny stories between “Business” & “ICT” stakeholders… The ICT squad keeps on complaining that “these guys from business can’t make up their mind, don’t know what they are doing, never have enough budget” … I can keep going on for hours here! Same thing on the other side: businesses never ever understand why it takes so long to deliver something, why it never corresponds to what they asked for (or needed), and why these apps contain bugs!
Now think about it: in a way, it’s normal that we face difficulties in aligning these two worlds, right? Well, guess again. Thanks to applications like PowerApps & Flow, these stakeholder groups will get much closer to each other. This will without a doubt remove a lot of the perception issues that live between these stakeholders!
Here you have it, 5 benefits that make considering using PowerApps in your organization worthwhile.