Is App Dev Industry Ready for Massive Disruption?
3,300 IT Leaders Report Talent Scarcity, Massive Backlogs, and Aging Infrastructure as Top Concerns
May 22, 2019

The number of applications slated for delivery in 2019 has increased 60%, 38% of whom plan to deliver 25 or more apps this year, according to The State of Application Development, 2019: Is IT Ready for Disruption? a report from OutSystems based on survey results from more than 3,300 IT professionals in all industries across the world.


"Our 2019 survey shows that many IT departments are facing a multitude of disruptive forces when it comes to digital transformation and application development," said Steve Rotter, CMO for OutSystems. "The threat of digital disruption and the need for digital transformation has been a driver of IT strategy for years. Add to that the current uncertain global economic outlook, and it becomes obvious why business leaders are so concerned about agility today."

"Digital transformation dominates business strategy today, which is why web and mobile development demand is booming. Moreover, speed and agility are more important than ever before", Rotter added.

More survey findings include:

Steep development time

46% of respondents said the average time to deliver a web or mobile application is five months or more.

Backlogs remain

64% of IT professionals said they have an app dev backlog, and only 39% said their app dev backlog had improved in the past year.

Development talent hard to find and keep

Most respondents have hired developers, 75% of respondents described app dev talent as scarce, and only 36% of organizations have larger app dev teams than a year ago. The numbers appear to show retention of app dev talent is an equally grave concern.

Agile practices are still slow to mature

60% of organizations have invested in agile tools and services in the past year. However, the average agile-maturity score was a lackluster 2.7 out of 5, meaning most organizations are still in the process of defining agile processes.

Customer-centricity continues to rise

Over 60% of organizations have invested in customer-centric practices in the past year, including customer journey mapping, design thinking, and lean UX. For the new apps slated for development in 2019, those that will be used directly by customers or business partners were identified as most important.

Low-Code Has Become Mainstream

Another key research finding was that low-code is no longer just for innovators and early adopters. For example, 41% of respondents said their organization was already using a low-code application platform. And, a further 10% said they were about to start using one.

The analysis in the report identified that organizations using low-code are:

■ 26% more likely to describe their organization as satisfied or somewhat satisfied with the speed of application development

■ 11% more likely to deliver web applications in four months or less

■ 15% more likely to deliver mobile applications in four months or less

■ 20% more likely to score their agile maturity as level 3, 4 or 5

■ 12% more likely to say that their app dev backlog has improved since last year

■ Reporting a 16% higher self-assessment score for digital transformation maturity

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