Not only can this transformation bridge skills gaps and talent shortages — it empowers subject matter experts to become innovators and creators.

According to Gallup analysts, workers with advanced digital skills are expected to add US$107.5bn to Malaysia’s annual GDP, amid the challenge of hiring software development talent.

Such trends and predictions have set the tone for PETRONAS Digital Sdn Bhd (PDSB) to “meet the evolving needs of  (its) businesses and operations worldwide,” by adopting a low-code app development platform, according to its Vice President of Group Technology and Commercialization, Aadrin Azly. “It will enable our people to create new applications faster, enabling PETRONAS to continually unlock new value for the organisation,” Azly noted.

A low-code platform can help organizations bridge talent and staff shortage gaps by driving productivity, cost efficiencies, and business innovation. Principles such as model-driven design, automatic code generation, and visual programming are employed to simplify and speed up programming performed by people who are not professionally trained or experienced in this field. Note that low-code is different from no-code development.

PDSB’s approach has been to enter into a Memorandum of Understanding with a low-code platform that will provide training materials, research and other know-how to power PETRONAS’ Citizen Developer Program. In this program, employees with little to no coding experience are trained to create applications using a low-code platform to democratize app development and fuel technology-based innovation.

The platform chosen by PDSB, OutSystems, will best-practice tools, methodologies, and technical support to facilitate the adoption of the platform. Newly trained citizen developers under the program will be certified to have demonstrated the ability to use its platform effectively.

Said Paulo Rosado, Founder and CEO, OutSystems, said: “As the world continues to encounter a shortage of developers, low-code technology allows individuals and businesses to streamline their processes and develop solutions faster.”