Top Evaluation Criteria for Selecting a Low-code Platform – Part 2

Eight Technical & Functional Adoption Features 

So, you’re still thinking about taking the leap and looking into the possibilities of investing in a low-code platform for developing your business applications. Rather than the tedious process of writing line after line of code for every application you implement, you’re exploring this “low-code” option that uses model-driven development for rapid application creation. 

Smart Apps

But there are many platforms to choose from! How do you choose which one is right for your organization and what evaluation criteria should you use?

To help you, we’ve prepared a list of our top evaluation criteria for low-code platforms. And to help you determine whether your perfect fit is the Mendix platform in combination with TimeSeries being your Mendix implementation and knowledge partner, we’ve also highlighted how well we meet those criteria. 

In part one of this blog series here, we explored eight Organizational and Platform Adoption Criteria that you will want to consider. Now, in part two we’ll explore eight Technical Features and Functional Criteria you should consider before making that decision.

Technical Features and Functional Criteria

1. Productivity Gains and Time to Value 

Ask yourself: How quickly can our organization deliver applications and make changes using the platform? And what does this process look like? 

The Mendix platform allows apps and changes to apps to be made at a very rapid pace. Mendix is a model driven development environment, which means that it is made to fit developers of all skill sets using both no-code and low-code development tools. These tools make it possible for developer hours to be reduced by 70%, on project teams that are 60% smaller, with a project duration that is 50% shorter. Utilizing the Mendix Platform through TimeSeries’ expert developers, allows you to be part of the entire process using an agile framework. We work directly with you or your team and leave you with the power to make changes along the way. You can feel certain that the best team is on the job. 

2. Cost Transparency and Predictability

Ask yourself: How clear is the vendor’s investment model? Are there any user and/or application definition restrictions?

Ideally, you want something that has a predictable cost model, fits your budget, and has the ability to scale up or down to suit your needs. Mendix offers unlimited possibilities in terms of what you can do, and TimeSeries can advise on the best cost model to fit your needs. The cost and framework are laid out in a clear way up front, and we use an Agile project approach to document our projects and make sure there are no surprises. 

3. Openness of Platform 

Ask yourself: Can we use data from our existing systems? How easy is it to integrate apps we build on the platform with our other systems?

The Mendix platform is made to be accessible and extensible at every level, so you’re not locked into anything and can grow far and wide in any direction. The Mendix platform combined with TimeSeries’ expert team means that the possibilities are endless. The platform itself is created in a way that gives you access to everything you would need to grow, move, or change your apps. Mendix has an unmatched ability to integrate seamlessly with 3rd party software. Consider it like the glue that can hold various platforms and systems together. To aid in this integration with other platforms, the Mendix Marketplace offers 3rd party connectors out of the box to make that integration faster, better, and easier. Should the 3rd party connection you need not be in the marketplace already, it’s a breeze to create your own using REST, SOAP, and even (S)FTP, JDBC, and many other technologies, perhaps with a little help from TimeSeries’ technical developers if needed.

4. Deployment Flexibility 

Ask yourself: Is the platform flexible with deployment options i.e. on premise, cloud, and hybrid? Is deployment portable and scalable? 

Mendix applications are pre-packaged to be deployed to the cloud provider of your choice, with just once click. In terms of deployment options, your choices reach far and wide, including public cloud, virtual private cloud, private cloud, hybrid cloud, multi cloud, traditional (virtual) servers, and this includes on-premise deployments. Want to learn a little more? Check out a breakdown here

5. Performance and Scalability

Ask yourself: Can the platform scale horizontally (adding extra identical boxes to the server) and vertically (adding more powerful hardware) without interruption to our end users? Can each app have its own dedicated runtime environment that is managed, scaled, and performance optimized on its own? 

Mendix is the only platform that scales horizontally and vertically in real-time, the Mendix Runtime being housed within a cloud-native architecture. To ensure smooth scalability, Mendix implemented what is called a stateless runtime. This means that regardless of volume of requests, runtime instances will always be available. Mendix is packed with the best technology to deliver the best performance. Our developers here at TimeSeries always follow the best practices to build apps that perform well, even when those apps are under immense pressure by users and must process or transfer huge volumes of data.

6. Multichannel and Offline Support 

Ask yourself: How does the platform support multichannel applications, including offline apps, out of the box?

The Mendix platform offers the ideal environment for building multi-channel and even offline applications and allows you to develop, deploy, test and manage any of your mobile applications all in the same place. Supporting a variety of mobile applications, including native mobile apps, progressive web apps, and hybrid apps, you have the ability to choose the best application type for your needs. You can build an offline application in the Mendix platform, using the same tools you would to build online and responsive applications! A great example of this offline support and multi-channel usage is covered in our TimeSeries case story from a leading European Shipyard

7. Cloud Nativity and Enterprise Architecture

Ask yourself: Does the platform comply with the twelve-factor cloud native architecture principles? Can the apps run independently on any hardware and against any major relational data set? Does the platform fully support modern stacks out of the box? 

Mendix offers an extremely robust architecture that meets key principles including model-driven development, model interpretation over code generation, microservices, containers, deployment standardization, and Twelve-Factor App Principles. Want to dive deeper? Take a look at the Mendix platform in terms of its Architecture.

8. Security and Compliance  

Ask yourself: Does the platform follow the Global Compliance Assurances Standards and ISAE and ISO Certifications? 

With Mendix and TimeSeries serving clients across a multitude of industries including government agencies, security has been of major importance. Mendix has implemented an information security management system (ISMS) meeting ISO/IEC 27001 standards. There are comprehensive security and governance features built into the platform. To see a complete list of Mendix security standards, click here! A great example of this security usage in action is TimeSeries’ case story about SVB

Now you know! 

You now know where to start in terms of choosing your low-code platform. With these Top Eight Technical and Functional Features, you should now be on the right path to make the best decision for your business. Be sure to check out Part 1 of this blog post for The Top Eight Organizational and Platform Criteria you should consider, if you haven’t already. 

If you’re interested in discovering more about working with TimeSeries and the Mendix platform, we’d love to hear from you! Via this link you can get a tour of the Mendix Platform: from ideation and development to deployment and operations. It also contains demos to get you started.

February 1, 2021
Maggie Burnham