Connect with us


Why Automating Everything Might Not Be Your Best Solution – ReadWrite



Why Automating Everything Might Not Be Your Best Solution - ReadWrite

Low-code/no-code development offers a tantalizing future where almost anybody can create workflow automation to streamline operations for a more efficient, productive workplace. According to TechRepublic, 47% of organizations already use low-code/no-code platforms, with workflow automation being the leading reason. The business world is certainly ready to embrace low-code/no-code development in its everyday operations.

However, as exciting as the possibilities might be, low-code/no-code development can also be overused or poorly implemented; this creates problems in the long term simply for the sake of making things easier in the short term.

Ten years from now, organizations that aren’t careful will likely find themselves with dozens of unnecessary automated processes that run on various unstable platforms and that were built by people who no longer work at the company.

The Problem With Automating First and Asking Questions Later

In the book “Implementing Lean Software Development: From Concept to Cash,” authors Mary Poppendieck and Tom Poppendieck said: “We are not helping our customers if we simply automate a complex or messy process.”

It’s important to remember that even if there’s little coding involved in low-code/no-code workflow automation, the design and management problems will still be similar to full-on software development.

You can’t get away from the fact that complex work processes are complex, and the automation of those processes will mirror that.

Messy Processes Beget Inefficient Automation

The authors went on to say: “Any process that is a candidate for automation should first be clarified and simplified, possibly even removing existing automation. Only then can the process be clearly understood and the leverage points for effective automation identified.”

Consider, for example, that you have a requisition system that requires five different approvals to move forward. So you automate the approval process. You might save employees a few minutes sending emails and filling in spreadsheets, but what if the fundamental inefficiency lies in the approvals themselves? What if you don’t need that many approvals to begin with? Automating unoptimized processes only hardwires inefficiency into the system and makes it more difficult to change later.

Assessing Whether You Should Automate With a Low-Code/No-Code Platform

To make the most out of these platforms, it’s crucial to ask the right questions before jumping straight to automation. It’s the only way to be sure you’re creating a process that will help your business maintain efficiency for years to come. Here are four questions you should ask to figure out whether a low-code/no-code automation solution is right for the job:

1. Do I know enough about workflow and process analysis to be confident in my decisions?

Used effectively, automation can streamline existing processes and free up employees’ time to work on more important things.

Used ineffectively, however, automation could cement wasteful processes into your operations and make them harder to dispose of in the future.

When Toyota developed the lean manufacturing approach, it didn’t immediately start automating everything. Instead, the company invested heavily in continuous process improvement and hyper-optimizing its workflows. Make sure you have the expertise necessary to know whether a process truly needs to exist and is well-optimized before you begin to automate.

2. How critical is a process to our organization?

Software development has a long history of quality analysis and quality assurance processes that are often missing in low-code/no-code development. It’s important to keep in mind that a lack of coding doesn’t mean there will be a lack of errors — the system will only ever do what you tell it to do.

Although the risk is generally much lower on these platforms than for developers, if you’re trying to build something for a business-critical process, it pays to take extra care and time to make sure you can get it right. In these cases, it’s often best to build several small automation systems instead of one big one. That way, you’ll be much less likely to forget about how pieces work as you’re piping data from one part to another.

3. Do I understand the need for longevity?

Typical software development tends to happen with a five- to 10-year outlook in mind, but this long view is often missing from low-code/no-code software. Employees fail to evaluate risks that might turn up in the next year or more and instead focus only on the current task at hand.

But what happens when you think out to six or 12 months in the future? Will you still be in the same position then? If not, how will you hand the project off to someone else? Beyond that, how will things look in five years? Is it likely that the platform you’re using will still be around? Short-term gains tend to overshadow these important long-term considerations in low-code/no-code development.

4. Am I okay with throwing experiments away on the journey to a workable project?

You don’t want to spend a ton of time putting together a big plan for an automation project and then building it all in one go. Instead, it’s smarter to start sooner and then work in smaller batches. These batches can provide you with a powerful learning feedback loop that will help you avoid wasting time developing features no one will use. By working on and delivering smaller segments, you can experiment and iterate to build useful and efficient processes instead of ones that don’t accomplish your goals.

Tools that enable people to automate without a deep understanding of software engineering and design principles are on the rise — which means so is the likelihood of baking inefficiencies and faulty assumptions into workflows.

Before creating something that will only be a burden down the line, evaluate the bigger picture and determine if your processes are ready for automation.

Image Credit: Markus Spiske; Unsplash; Thank you!

Aaron Bruce

Developer at Synapse Studios

Aaron Bruce is a developer at Synapse Studios. He has over a decade of technical experience spanning many industries, including healthcare, financial services, tourism, hospitality, and more.


Fintech Kennek raises $12.5M seed round to digitize lending



Google eyed for $2 billion Anthropic deal after major Amazon play

London-based fintech startup Kennek has raised $12.5 million in seed funding to expand its lending operating system.

According to an Oct. 10 report, the round was led by HV Capital and included participation from Dutch Founders Fund, AlbionVC, FFVC, Plug & Play Ventures, and Syndicate One. Kennek offers software-as-a-service tools to help non-bank lenders streamline their operations using open banking, open finance, and payments.

The platform aims to automate time-consuming manual tasks and consolidate fragmented data to simplify lending. Xavier De Pauw, founder of Kennek said:

“Until kennek, lenders had to devote countless hours to menial operational tasks and deal with jumbled and hard-coded data – which makes every other part of lending a headache. As former lenders ourselves, we lived and breathed these frustrations, and built kennek to make them a thing of the past.”

The company said the latest funding round was oversubscribed and closed quickly despite the challenging fundraising environment. The new capital will be used to expand Kennek’s engineering team and strengthen its market position in the UK while exploring expansion into other European markets. Barbod Namini, Partner at lead investor HV Capital, commented on the investment:

“Kennek has developed an ambitious and genuinely unique proposition which we think can be the foundation of the entire alternative lending space. […] It is a complicated market and a solution that brings together all information and stakeholders onto a single platform is highly compelling for both lenders & the ecosystem as a whole.”

The fintech lending space has grown rapidly in recent years, but many lenders still rely on legacy systems and manual processes that limit efficiency and scalability. Kennek aims to leverage open banking and data integration to provide lenders with a more streamlined, automated lending experience.

The seed funding will allow the London-based startup to continue developing its platform and expanding its team to meet demand from non-bank lenders looking to digitize operations. Kennek’s focus on the UK and Europe also comes amid rising adoption of open banking and open finance in the regions.

Featured Image Credit: Photo from; Thank you!

Radek Zielinski

Radek Zielinski is an experienced technology and financial journalist with a passion for cybersecurity and futurology.

Continue Reading


Fortune 500’s race for generative AI breakthroughs



Deanna Ritchie

As excitement around generative AI grows, Fortune 500 companies, including Goldman Sachs, are carefully examining the possible applications of this technology. A recent survey of U.S. executives indicated that 60% believe generative AI will substantially impact their businesses in the long term. However, they anticipate a one to two-year timeframe before implementing their initial solutions. This optimism stems from the potential of generative AI to revolutionize various aspects of businesses, from enhancing customer experiences to optimizing internal processes. In the short term, companies will likely focus on pilot projects and experimentation, gradually integrating generative AI into their operations as they witness its positive influence on efficiency and profitability.

Goldman Sachs’ Cautious Approach to Implementing Generative AI

In a recent interview, Goldman Sachs CIO Marco Argenti revealed that the firm has not yet implemented any generative AI use cases. Instead, the company focuses on experimentation and setting high standards before adopting the technology. Argenti recognized the desire for outcomes in areas like developer and operational efficiency but emphasized ensuring precision before putting experimental AI use cases into production.

According to Argenti, striking the right balance between driving innovation and maintaining accuracy is crucial for successfully integrating generative AI within the firm. Goldman Sachs intends to continue exploring this emerging technology’s potential benefits and applications while diligently assessing risks to ensure it meets the company’s stringent quality standards.

One possible application for Goldman Sachs is in software development, where the company has observed a 20-40% productivity increase during its trials. The goal is for 1,000 developers to utilize generative AI tools by year’s end. However, Argenti emphasized that a well-defined expectation of return on investment is necessary before fully integrating generative AI into production.

To achieve this, the company plans to implement a systematic and strategic approach to adopting generative AI, ensuring that it complements and enhances the skills of its developers. Additionally, Goldman Sachs intends to evaluate the long-term impact of generative AI on their software development processes and the overall quality of the applications being developed.

Goldman Sachs’ approach to AI implementation goes beyond merely executing models. The firm has created a platform encompassing technical, legal, and compliance assessments to filter out improper content and keep track of all interactions. This comprehensive system ensures seamless integration of artificial intelligence in operations while adhering to regulatory standards and maintaining client confidentiality. Moreover, the platform continuously improves and adapts its algorithms, allowing Goldman Sachs to stay at the forefront of technology and offer its clients the most efficient and secure services.

Featured Image Credit: Photo by Google DeepMind; Pexels; Thank you!

Deanna Ritchie

Managing Editor at ReadWrite

Deanna is the Managing Editor at ReadWrite. Previously she worked as the Editor in Chief for Startup Grind and has over 20+ years of experience in content management and content development.

Continue Reading


UK seizes web3 opportunity simplifying crypto regulations



Deanna Ritchie

As Web3 companies increasingly consider leaving the United States due to regulatory ambiguity, the United Kingdom must simplify its cryptocurrency regulations to attract these businesses. The conservative think tank Policy Exchange recently released a report detailing ten suggestions for improving Web3 regulation in the country. Among the recommendations are reducing liability for token holders in decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs) and encouraging the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) to adopt alternative Know Your Customer (KYC) methodologies, such as digital identities and blockchain analytics tools. These suggestions aim to position the UK as a hub for Web3 innovation and attract blockchain-based businesses looking for a more conducive regulatory environment.

Streamlining Cryptocurrency Regulations for Innovation

To make it easier for emerging Web3 companies to navigate existing legal frameworks and contribute to the UK’s digital economy growth, the government must streamline cryptocurrency regulations and adopt forward-looking approaches. By making the regulatory landscape clear and straightforward, the UK can create an environment that fosters innovation, growth, and competitiveness in the global fintech industry.

The Policy Exchange report also recommends not weakening self-hosted wallets or treating proof-of-stake (PoS) services as financial services. This approach aims to protect the fundamental principles of decentralization and user autonomy while strongly emphasizing security and regulatory compliance. By doing so, the UK can nurture an environment that encourages innovation and the continued growth of blockchain technology.

Despite recent strict measures by UK authorities, such as His Majesty’s Treasury and the FCA, toward the digital assets sector, the proposed changes in the Policy Exchange report strive to make the UK a more attractive location for Web3 enterprises. By adopting these suggestions, the UK can demonstrate its commitment to fostering innovation in the rapidly evolving blockchain and cryptocurrency industries while ensuring a robust and transparent regulatory environment.

The ongoing uncertainty surrounding cryptocurrency regulations in various countries has prompted Web3 companies to explore alternative jurisdictions with more precise legal frameworks. As the United States grapples with regulatory ambiguity, the United Kingdom can position itself as a hub for Web3 innovation by simplifying and streamlining its cryptocurrency regulations.

Featured Image Credit: Photo by Jonathan Borba; Pexels; Thank you!

Deanna Ritchie

Managing Editor at ReadWrite

Deanna is the Managing Editor at ReadWrite. Previously she worked as the Editor in Chief for Startup Grind and has over 20+ years of experience in content management and content development.

Continue Reading

Copyright © 2021 Seminole Press.