The world of software development is set for some big changes in 2020. We predict that service mesh, Kubernetes, AI-infused applications, and low-code products will continue their upward swing in enterprise adoption. And organizationally, developers will continue to spread out from central IT departments; business developers are proliferating as companies increasingly deploy software in service of customer obsession.
Specifically, our report predicts that:
- More developers will work outside of central IT organizations as companies continue to make deploying software a crucial part of their business model. In 2019, 24% of developers working on internal software tech said they report to a business unit outside of CIO or IT departments. With the increased use of low–code tools that enable business users to build apps and product-centric teams, we predict this proportion will reach 1 in 3 by the end of 2020.
- Enterprise development teams will consolidate their cloud platform choices as Kubernetes adoption proliferates. AD&D leaders will select one of the big five cloud vendors — Amazon, Google, IBM (plus Red Hat), Microsoft, and VMware (plus Pivotal) — for their complex, Kubernetes-generation platforms, while Alibaba, Oracle, Salesforce, and SAP struggle to gain traction in cloud-native development.
- In 2019, 37% of developers in Forrester’s worldwide survey were using or planning to use low-code products. By mid-2020, we predict that this number will rise to more than half of developers, thanks in part to a renewed push by Microsoft for its PowerApps, Flow, Power BI, and Power Platform products. Microsoft’s “free” and good-enough products will be adopted both in straightforward and sophisticated use cases and serve as catalysts for further growth — and consolidation — in the low-code market.