This week we take another look at LOCO as they release a few new features that expand the value they can provide to small and medium sized businesses looking for a simple no code application platform. For a quick look you can watch a snippet of my demo with LOCO in the video below. If you prefer to read, then scroll on down.
We first met with Doug Wilson and the LOCO team a few months ago, and you can read our first impressions of their approach in our last article: Is No Code Development LOCO? | Executive Perspective with CEO Doug Wilson. Since that meeting, the team has been hard at work helping beta customers and expanding their feature set and out of the box templates.
They’ve added two new product areas that compliment each other well – first, a rule builder with an interesting new drag-and-drop logic builder. Building on that capability they’ve been ramping up their integration library with a focus on common apps like Slack and other tools that most businesses are using today. Rules plus a Slack integration takes us to the second product area that could stand on its own in some circles – a slack bot builder.
Rules in LOCO
Business rules are usually found in more advanced business process management and automation offerings, but LOCO has found a way to introduce an easy to use visual rule builder that can trigger events inside and outside of LOCO.
While there is a small learning curve, as with any new tool, I found that the building brick-like interface made for a quick ramp up. On the left side of the interface above you’ll see a gray menu of objects that you can create logic against. When clicked, those objects expand into a menu of building blocks you can drag over and add to the logic block in the main building area of the screen.
Building Slack Bots with No Code
If you took a hard look at the rule builder, then you can probably see where this is going. In the LOCO channel that you add to your Slack, you can create rules that trigger events and return feedback to Slack based on the logic that you create here. In the video above, Doug showed off some pretty slick expense approval bots that present some quick interactions in slack to get the task done faster than opening your favorite expense report app, finding the right report, and emailing the details to the boss for feedback.
This functionality is fairly expansive as you are only limited by the data sources you have connected to LOCO. And when helpful, you can bring folks right in to a browser based LOCO experience from a direct link that the Slack bot provides to finish a task or take further action.
A LOCO Future for Small Business No Code Development?
LOCO presents an interesting opportunity for small businesses who want more flexibility, faster development cycles to automate business tasks, and less reliance on an outsourced developer to improve business processes.
Their beta program is a great opportunity to test the water – and Doug and his team are ready to help with white glove service.