What is Rapid Application Development (RAD) Software?
Rapid Application Development (RAD) is a software program that helps in choosing from the predesigned frameworks to speed-up the software development process. RAD helps to reduce overall development time with its drag and drop functionality. This is further segmented by low-code and no-code development platform.
Top 10 Rapid Application Development Software providers 2020:
- Microsoft Corporation
- IBM Corporation
- Oracle Corporation
- Google Inc.
- Pegasystems Inc.
- Servicenow Inc.
Competitive Leadership Mapping
Visionary leaders are the leading market players in terms of new developments such as product launches, innovative technologies, and the adoption of growth strategies. These players have a broad product offering that caters to most of the regions globally. Visionary leaders primarily focus on acquiring the leading market position through their strong financial capabilities and their well-established brand equity. Some of the visionary leaders in the Rapid Application Development Market are Microsoft Corporation, IBM Corporation, Oracle Corporation, Google Inc.
Dynamic Differentiators are established players with very strong business strategies. However, they have a weaker product portfolio compared to the visionary leaders. They generally focus only on a specific type of technology related to the product. The most recognized dynamic differentiators in the market are Appian Corporation, Kony Inc, Wavemaker, Pegasystems Inc.
Innovators in the competitive leadership mapping are vendors that have demonstrated substantial product innovations as compared to their competitors. The companies have focused on product portfolios. However, they do not have very strong growth strategies for their overall business, when compared with the visionary leaders. The innovators in the market are K2, LANSA, Quickbase and Outsystems.
Emerging companies have niche product and service offerings. Their business strategies are not as strong as that of the established vendors. The emerging vendors include the new entrants in the market, emerging in terms of product portfolio and geographic reach, and require time to gain significant traction in the market. The emerging companies in the market are Zoho Corporation, Filemaker, Amplelogic, Ninox.
What drives the Rapid Application Development (RAD) Software market?
- The overall process of the software development life cycle has become time-consuming. However, to keep pace with this fast-growing technical marketplace, organizations are adopting rapid application development solutions.
- The BYOD policy has become a standard and has encouraged the use of smartphones in businesses. BYOD is expanding into other areas of the enterprise which indicates the growing need for Rapid Mobile App Development (RMAD) in the coming future.
- The Rapid Application Development solution enables a technical as well as a non-technical user to develop a customized software application using RAD’s unique underlying characteristics. This is one of the major factors leading to the growing adoption of RAD tools.
- With Rapid Application Development tools, an organization can build any application faster, thereby eliminating the time taken for vendor-supplied customization.
- Another factor accelerating the RAD market is the minimal training to non-developers to enable them to learn more about the software development process.
What are the phases involved in Rapid Application Development Solution?
- Business Modeling – The Business Modeling phase decides the course of information to several business channels and is a critical phase in rapid application development. All the preliminary planning and analysis is typically completed during this phase. Also, this phase presents a comprehensive depiction of business process functionality.
- Data modeling – All the data collected throughout the business modeling phase gets assessed to outline a set of strong data objects crucial for the business. The Data Modeling phase helps to regulate the RAD system development architecture from the user response thereby permitting for the formation of prototypes.
- Process Modeling - The actual coding, testing, and integration happens in the process modeling phase. Any modifications to the data objects are outlined in this stage to create business information flow.
- Application Modeling and Testing – In this phase, application development and coding is accomplished. The developers use automated tools for the creation of the software, thus, altering processes and data models into prototypes.
Importance of Rapid Application Development (RAD) Software
- Communicative Visual Interface - Rapid Application Development Platforms have an interface that enables users to drag and drop components. It allows users to access a library of design components, rather than writing the entire code from scratch.
- Low-Code Approach - RAD tools leverage CASE to reduce manual coding. RAD tools allow programmers to use codes that have been formerly created, saving substantial time. CASE tools are mainly useful in quickening the development and meeting tight deadlines with negligible hassle.
- Immediate Prototyping – Best quality RAD tools rely on generating prototypes in a matter of hours. Developers provide working prototypes to stakeholders and possible users with a drag and drop approach. With continuous interaction amongst developers and executives, developers get a better idea of what works and what doesn’t.
- Unified Backend Integration - RAD tools have the capacity to integrate with a diversity of online and offline resources. A better quality rapid application development platform possesses out-of-the-box connectors that make this integration simple.
- Collaborative Project Management - The Rapid Application Development tools can deliver high-quality outputs within small timeframes mostly because it maintains things collaborative in each step.
A few popular Rapid Application Development (RAD) Software use cases
Use Case 1 - Enhancing the legacy system to deliver faster business transactions and reduce costs
Description - A global supplier of fixed asset management and intermodal transport software and services faced issues with its data exchange system
WhiteHedge Solution - The overhauled the entire existing system by providing support for multiple data formats. It also delivers a consistent message tracking and handling interface.
Benefits - With the WhiteHedge solution, the company has managed to reduce the trade cycle. The real-time data interchange feature of the solution helped the company eliminate coding errors rapidly. The solution also helped the company reduce its overall costs and time while also speeding up business transactions.
Use Case 2 – Enhancing the agile approach for higher customer satisfaction
Description - Deutsche Bahn (DB) Systel GmbH, a provider of internal ICT solutions, formed a small department, named ‘Small Solutions’.
Oracle APEX - Small Solutions practices an agile and customer-centric approach, and so the Oracle APEX solutions help provide fast and cost-effective solutions.
Benefits - With the implementation of this solution, DB could operate faster than earlier, with a drastic increase in the speed of operations. For instance, Small Solutions could serve all divisions of DB, along with better and enhanced customer satisfaction.
Use Case 3 – Green Screen’s legacy system’s transformation to modern web-based applications
Description - Piraeus MultiFin SA, a Greece-based finance company, offers finance to various sectors, such as automotive, marine, and retail.
Visual LANSA’s Framework - The company was operating with its legacy system, with which advancing technology became difficult to manage both the internal and external operations. With Visual LANSA Framework, the company redeveloped its existing system and infused new capabilities into it. The new framework enabled Multifin with disciplined development standards and consistent program quality; it even accelerated productivity.
Benefits - With Visual LANSA Framework, a team of 2 developers delivered roughly 1,000 programs. With the solution, users could leverage the enhanced software usage pattern and ensure a smooth workflow between external and internal parties.
What are the important applications of Rapid Application Development (RAD) Software?
Sales and Marketing
- RAD platforms help in designing sales and marketing applications.
- Sales organizations reap the benefits of RAD software by developing applications to implement the best practices for customer service and monitor the performance of the sales force.
- Organizations can design separate applications for event planning and follow-ups, thereby streamlining the process of designing, manufacturing, and ordering marketing materials.
HR and Operations
- The HR business function conducts various activities, including planning for talent acquisition, attrition risk management, employee sentiment analysis, and capacity planning.
- These activities need to be recorded separately to use the data to strategize employee satisfaction activities, hire new employees, and reduce the attrition rate.
- Hence, the HR business function is increasingly adopting RAD solutions to segregate these data and create separate applications.
- RAD platforms used for the HR business function help maximize the operational efficiency, improve the productivity, and enhance the profits of the HR personnel.
- The finance department of any organization always relies on data accuracy and its correct interpretation. To maintain such accuracy, organizations need to be updated on financial activities, such as financial reporting and control, capital budgeting, and financial planning.
- Hence, most of the organizations need to develop applications that help them in making decisions on profit/loss, balance sheets, and analysis of annual reports.
- Bankers turn to RAD platforms to design applications in real-time and update customers’ profiles on the basis of their past transactions and shopping history and help them in dispersing loans and raising their credit limits instantaneously.
Major advantages of RAD solution
- Quicker Code Generation - Since the code can be reused, manual coding is reduced significantly. This cuts the coding and scripting time, as deliverables can be easily transported as scripts.
- Timely Systems Integration - RAD software instantly recognizes any faults or problems within integrations and forces instant resolution.
- Lesser Development Cost - The major cost advantage of RAD software is that users don’t need to rerun the project again from the scratch if the client demands drastic modifications, leading to less cost overrun.
- Better Acceptance of Latest Technologies - In a waterfall project, adding a new technology involves a lot of risk and efforts. With RAD solutions, it is easy to implement latest technologies.
- BP Logix, provider of Low-Code BPM solutions for rapid application development, declared that the company had been acquired by Finrock Growth Partners.
- Siemens declared that it acquired Mendix, the spearhead in low-code and no-code rapid application development is now the principal application software for all of Siemens Cloud Solutions.
- OutSystems, provider of low-code platform for rapid application development, announced that it partnered with Manufacturing Technology Centre (MTC)