Low-code vs BPM: What’s the difference?

Although low-code vs business process management (BPM) software is hardly a chicken-and-egg situation (BPM has been around since the early 2000s, while low-code platforms arrived in the 2010s), the two have a lot of similarities.

While low-code is often considered more of a tool and BPM more of a discipline, their purposes align: to find inefficient, outdated practices and processes within your organization and improve them. Their benefits align too — more revenue, less waste, and better customer service and employee satisfaction — which is what makes them both so popular.

But what, exactly, are the differences and similarities between low-code and BPM software systems? And which one is best for your business? Here’s a breakdown.

What is BPM?

Business process management platforms were the original digital business process solution, intended to help transform workflows. By working with specific business processes within a company — instead of lumping everything together for one giant overhaul, for example — BPM got to the root of departmental problems, making it easier to automate and streamline processes and monitor results. Using BPM systems, companies suddenly saw improved productivity, efficiency, managerial oversight, and compliance control.

However, because BPM is complicated and highly technical, it requires hours of staff time, training, and consultations before employees can grasp the nuances of the system, let alone implement it. In fact, because of its complexity, organizations used it less and less after its inception — until low-code technology revitalized it.

What is low-code software?

With simpler, more cost-effective features, interfaces, and tools (hello, drag-and-drop functionality), low-code platforms can make anyone a software developer (or a passable version of one). At the very least, they eliminate the need to constantly harass your IT department or techiest family member.

Low-code software helps just about anyone in your company build and use systems like vendor portals, employee portals, or e-commerce apps to create a faster, more efficient way of doing business — regardless of their coding knowledge. And similar to business process management platforms, low-code systems can also help mitigate risk and meet compliance requirements.

As you decide which one is best for you and your business, it’s important to remember that choosing a low-code platform over BPM software shouldn’t mean compromising on a professional and engaging visual experience. Your system should also be accessible — as well as decipherable — for both your employees and clients on all web and mobile devices.

Which is better: Low-code or BPM?

According to recent reports, both low-code and business process management markets are growing and growing fast, expected to reach a value of $45.5 billion and $14.4 billion, respectively, by 2025. Choosing which is best for you ultimately comes down to your specific business needs and the kind of team you have. Low-code platforms are easier for those with little or no coding experience to use, while experienced software developers can help you implement business process management systems.

Since low-code platforms are mostly cloud-based, they tend to be more cost-effective, faster, more agile, simpler to set up, and easier to understand compared to traditional BPM programs. They also require way less training and coding knowledge than BPMs, essentially allowing your company to implement changes in mere minutes or hours (without excessive training for your employees or outsourcing to software developers). Lastly, low-code platforms come equipped with better functionality than BPM systems, thanks to their robust integration options.

But BPM has its benefits, too, including the ability to solve more complex process challenges, especially for larger, more complex enterprises with more platforms and employees. BPM also helps reduce micromanagement and human error, provides more transparency, and ensures your organization meets all compliance standards.

What about a low-code or BPM alternative?

Whether you’re looking for a low-code or BPM platform for your business, code-free form builder Jotform can offer the capabilities of both, helping you increase your productivity and automate workflows. It’s a user-friendly and fully customizable tool, making your work life that much easier.

Jotform works with every type of business, regardless of size or industry, and since it integrates with over 100 popular applications — including PayPal, Zoom, Dropbox, Slack, and Google Sheets — you can improve functionality and streamline communication for your customers and employees.

Jotform has myriad capabilities, allowing you to access more than 10,000 form templates (such as surveys, questionnaires, evaluations), over 1,000 editable PDF templates, more than 300 table templates to customize your perfect BPM system, and 100-plus approval templates to automate your approval processes.

Choosing between low-code and BPM software may seem like a challenge in itself, but it’s possible to have the best of both worlds by using low-code applications like Jotform to create custom BPM solutions that are tailored to your business needs.

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