FME: No-code and low-code vs pro-code

Code is great but it comes with challenges. We had a client recently who had a brilliant bit of code that seamlessly moved data between two systems. As long as everything in the data transfer process was kept the same it worked perfectly. Unfortunately, nothing stays the same forever. When they needed to move data to a new system it became a nightmare. The original developer who wrote the code had left the company and, while they had hired an experienced developer to replace them, it took days of work to understand and update that chunk of code.

It can be tough for a developer to go through another coders work. Different developers may have different coding styles, which can make it difficult to understand the logic and structure of the code. They may use different naming conventions for variables, functions, and other elements of the code, which can make it difficult to understand the purpose of specific parts of it too. That’s one of the reasons no-code solutions like FME are so useful – everything is standardised and visual.

The FME Platform allows you to create technical workflows to manage your data through a simple drag-and-drop interface without having to create complicated code to integrate, transform, convert, or validate your data. We love low-code and no-code solutions.

What is no-code and low-code?

No-code and low-code is a visual approach to creating applications and processes faster through minimum manual hand coding. Instead of writing something in coding language, like JavaScript or Python, you use a graphical interface to drag-and-drop elements. In FME, these are called readers, transformers and writers. With these elements, people who don’t know how to code can create processes and applications without having to go to a developer. That said, low-code development also helps more seasoned programmers because it can be faster and isn’t tied to a developer’s coding expertise.

What are the benefits of using low-code or no-code?

At miso, we love no-code solutions like FME. So much so we’ve built the majority of our products with it for 24 years. Low-code is great because…

Reduced cost: Using no-code means you don’t have to hire an expensive team of developers to build something for you.
Quick to build: With no-code, processes and workflows can be built at a much faster pace by members of your team. While coders are quick, dragging and dropping can be much quicker.
Easy to change: If you want to change a workflow, you can do it yourself by just adding or altering transformers. With FME being visual, the process you’re running is easier to understand compared to lines of code.

What are the benefits of hand-coding?

While we love FME, we recognise there can be limitations to using low-code or no-code. You need to think about whether pro-code is the best way to solve your problem…
You may have to compromise: FME offers a huge range of transformers but these could limit your workflows – they might not do exactly what you need them to out of the box. You can solve this problem by creating custom transformers, but you’ll need more expertise in the platform.

Sometimes you just need an API: Sometimes pro-code is better for your business challenge. In this case, you might want to deploy a no-code solution to bridge the gap until developers have created that bit of hand-code you need.

You might need training: While FME brings down that skill ceiling you’ll still need to make sure people understand how to use it (we have great training sessions if you want to learn more about the platform).

Talk to us about no-code, low-code and FME

FME can help you connect hundreds of applications, manage multiple data formats, and create time-saving automations all without touching code. Having said that, FME feeds into APIs and other pro-code instances effectively too – we have coders on our team who build solutions with a mix of FME and hand coding.

We have built our business around FME and as a technology business embrace no code solutions. For over 20 years we’ve been a platinum partner of Safe Software (the creators of FME). It’s fast, reliable, easy to use and so useful. If you have any questions about FME and no-code, get in touch.