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Hosted by top 5 banking and fintech influencer, Jim Marous, Banking Transformed highlights the challenges facing the banking industry. Featuring some of the top minds in business, this podcast explores how financial institutions can prepare for the future of banking.

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Low-Code/No-Code Fuels Agile Digital Banking Transformation

Keeping pace with an increasingly changing marketplace has never been so difficult. No place is this more evident than in creating the IT solutions required for digital banking transformation.

One way to resolve this dilemma is with low-code and no-code platforms. These platforms provide opportunities for virtually anyone to create business and mobile applications, helping accelerate innovation and delivery of highly differentiated solutions.

Charles Lamanna, Corporate Vice President at Microsoft, is our guest on the show today. Charles shares how low-code/no-code app development has revolutionized the way financial institutions build future-ready applications.

This episode of Banking Transformed is sponsored by Microsoft:

See how Microsoft can help to unlock new opportunities at speed through innovative business models, deliver differentiated customer experiences across channels, products and services, and redefine new ways of working.

More at Microsoft.com/financialservices

Jim Marous:
Hello, and welcome to Banking Transformed. I'm your host, Jim Marous, founder and CEO of the Digital Banking Report, and co-publisher of The Financial Brand.

Jim Marous:
Keeping pace with an increasingly changing marketplace have never been so difficult. No places is this more evident than in creating the IT solutions required for effective digital banking transformation. One way to resolve this dilemma is with low-code and no-code platforms. These platforms provide opportunities for virtually anyone to create business and mobile applications, helping solve the growing skill shortages in banking.

Jim Marous:
I'm excited to have Charles Lamanna, Corporate Vice President of Microsoft on the show today. Charles will share why low-code/no-code is becoming an imperative solution as banking accelerates digital transformation while dealing with skill shortages.

Jim Marous:
So welcome to the show today, Charles. It's never been more important to build cutting edge, customer-centric digital banking solutions. Today, the creation of new products and services, customer journeys, engagement opportunities can be completed in days rather than months or years. Thanks to low-code and no-code platforms. So Charles, before we begin, can you share a bit about what no-code and low-code platforms really are and the benefits they provide?

Charles Lamanna:
Absolutely. This is probably my favorite topic to talk about these days. One of the things that's great about low-code/no-code solutions is about who it actually enables to create these solutions.

Charles Lamanna:
So beyond the technology, it's not just IT professionals or coders that can be develop automations or analyze data or create applications, it's now also people who sit in the business. People who work in the finance department or the HR department or the marketing department can start to build their own solutions in an afternoon or in a day or two to go make the business run more efficiently and get their job done faster.

Charles Lamanna:
And the way they do that is through these no-code/low-code tools. And they work just the same way, say office products work. You drag and drop components, you maybe write some simple formulas like you would inside of Excel, and you get a really good visual representation just like you would see inside of PowerPoint or inside of Visio. And just by wiring these things together, you can start to address and tackle all the most common digital problems that you face in these different parts of a typical banking institution. And that manifests as better employee experience, better customer experience, more efficient operations, all of that, through that really simple, easy to get started tool.

Jim Marous:
I'm from a banking background and I remember asking for something to be done by the IT department. You not only have to stand in line, but then you have to worry about, okay, what else takes a priority? You think you're on the scheduling, and then all of a sudden it shifts because something else going on. Does this help to alleviate some of that backlog and some of those issues that always were in place around how fast we wanted things to happen, but they just couldn't get done because they couldn't get programmed accordingly?

Charles Lamanna:
Absolutely. So if you think about how people do data exploration or analysis in Excel, that's not something you go to a central organization to do. Just everybody in the company can crack open a spreadsheet and start doing calculations and computing values without having to go through essential resource.

Charles Lamanna:
Low-code/no-code development's the same idea. Instead of having to go to IT or a coder to go build a solution, you can just do it locally, do it yourself. And that's the big change of being self-service, DIY capabilities through these new no-code/low-code tools.

Jim Marous:
So we've been discussing quite a bit on this podcast the accelerated move to digital due to the pandemic. One thing I hear from a lot of the banking investors right now is, it's so hard just to keep up. They're running really fast, they're getting things done, but it feels like there's the ending in place because there's so much to do.

Jim Marous:
In addition, there's skill shortages. You just can't find the people and especially in banking where there's so much competition from high tech companies and other companies looking for the same skill sets we're looking for. Does this whole low-code/no-code dynamic really is it simplify the finding of skilled workers to help fill this? It's just some of the remote work capabilities and the ability to actually not have to maybe find a full-time skilled employee.

Charles Lamanna:
Yeah, definitely. I think it doesn't be a three main ways. The first is, no-code/low-code helps, existing developers existing on staff go faster because they can use it together with other code first approaches so they can mix and match, say code and write up in visual studio or things they host in Azure, AWS alongside these no-code/low-code solutions and just build solutions twice as fast. So that's piece number one.

Charles Lamanna:
The second item is that you have a lot of technical resources, which aren't coders. So think about IT admins or IT professionals who can do some scripting, do some configuration, understand technical concepts, but they're not going to go right code and host it on a Kubernetes cluster or something like that. That audience is now able to do development with these no-code/low-code tools. You really unlock a whole new set of that are already inside your company and outside of it.

Charles Lamanna:
And the third piece is that self-service business user or citizen developer approach where people who don't normally develop their own solutions can now start to do it with these tools. All three of these combine to start to shrink that scale gap, shrink that labor gap and start to address the huge requirement for more automation, more apps and more data exploration that every one of our customers are struggling with right now.

Jim Marous:
Well, the development of new solutions takes a lot of internal knowledge of what the customer base looks like, how they're acting, things of this nature. How do you build a barrier around what you can allow people access to? And those things that you don't want them to have access to, even though they need to build these solutions?

Charles Lamanna:
This is one of the most important aspects of a successful no-code or low-code strategy is how do you govern all of these solutions that are going to get built? And folks will tell me frequently that low-code's been around for a long time. Some say longer than I've been alive. And it's caused a lot of complexity by having this huge debt of thousands of apps that are forgotten running on people's local machines. And even though they may be mission critical, there's no support or no operational infrastructure in place.

Charles Lamanna:
What's good about this whole new wave of a low-code solutions is that they're all cloud-based, they're cloud native. And that makes it possible to have governance policies centrally done by the IT organization, which are applied to all of the end users. So every single app that they build and every single piece of data they analyze and every single bot and automation they create can and have to go through a filter of data loss prevention policies, data, encryption policies, and even permissioning security policies. That's something which is really different than in the past and is something that's actually possible because these low-code solutions are now delivered from the cloud, from a central location and start to bring together all the existing assets that you have inside of an IT environment.

Jim Marous:
So it's interesting with the security and risk dynamics, the cloud dynamics, which banking really was slow to get to the whole comfort level with cloud for the same reasons, risk and fraud. You were recently quoted The Wall Street Journal saying in the next five years, there'll be as many apps created as there were in the last four years. Do you see this even happening to this scale in banking where everything moves to the snail's pace and where there's so much concern around how big do I open the doors? How can I actually make this work?

Charles Lamanna:
I would say, I think banking is going to start slow, but finish very fast. And the reason I think that will be true is, banking probably has the best example of end user computing through spreadsheets and data analytics and data analysis of really any industry.

Charles Lamanna:
I think if you go out and look and see find the most complicated Excel spreadsheets and the most complicated Excel deployments and the most usage of Excel, it's probably side of banking. And what is a complex Excel workbook, if not, an application?

Charles Lamanna:
So by changing the frame a little bit, and instead of thinking of these low-code solutions or low-code apps being big,, complex hulking solutions, but instead thin, powerful, easily created and easily maintained solutions, it's easy to imagine that this will be the next wave, a next generation of end user computing and self-service computing inside of banking.

Charles Lamanna:
And for that reason, I think it'll start small, it'll go through the hurdles, the acceptance, the compliance checks. But once it gets through those hurdles, it'll take off like wildfire because it has the DNA where people feel empowered and ready to go develop the solutions on their own.

Jim Marous:
And so I understand it low-code/no-code solutions are not like a single person getting down a... Not always, single person getting down to the computer and working on these things. These are actually teams that work to together. One of the changes brought forth by the pandemic was the way we work and how teams can collaborate. Did the pandemic speed the process of a low-code environment with the new normal, or did it slow it up because it's so much harder to get that collaboration? How does this impact the whole no-code and low-code dynamic?

Charles Lamanna:
So we've seen with our customers a rapid acceleration of adoption of these tools. And I would say that's working through, of course, the complexities of virtual collaboration and virtual teamwork and hybrid teams. But the reason that there was such a sharp acceleration is, almost every single company has had to deal with new business process, new workflows and new requirements that they've never seen before in a very short period of time in order to survive.

Charles Lamanna:
And we saw whether it's in banking or any other industry, if you didn't respond quickly in the first six months of COVID, you were punished harshly from a stock or a customer-based perspective.

Charles Lamanna:
And what we saw many companies doing is turning to low-code to build out these solutions quickly because you couldn't wait for three years and a 10-million budget project to complete. You had to find a project that worked right away.

Charles Lamanna:
So people turned to low-code to build applications, to analyze data, to automate tasks and processes, to respond to this very new operating environment, very new world that we were existing in during the COVID pandemic. And we've seen that acceleration continue right through as we start to return back to the new normal because we're snapping back to not where we were in 2019, but something new entirely, things like hybrid as opposed to only being in the office, for example,

Jim Marous:
It's interesting. As we look towards this new normal, I know that Microsoft's had to really invest in a lot of capabilities to allow teams to collaborate, to allow people to use low-code and no-code. Can you give some examples of how Microsoft has been investing in these capabilities in conjunction with how you're investing in clouds?

Charles Lamanna:
Yeah, absolutely. We have this big concept that we talk about of a new generation of collaborative applications and things like a collaborative toolkit. And those aren't terms specific to any individual piece of technology or product, but instead a new concept of creating software and solutions, which support virtual and hybrid collaboration by default.

Charles Lamanna:
And we think that in the past where maybe a lot of collaboration happened by looking to your left or right in your office or in the open space where you work, a lot more of the collaboration's going to happen through chat and video conferencing and phone calls.

Charles Lamanna:
And the reality is that software for the future needs to have that baked in because users are tired of switching between 20 different applications, get their job done. Instead, they want the ability to very quickly and very easily communicate and collaborate right in the context of whatever app or whatever process they're working on. So that's a big shift that we're doing and we think that permeates all parts of software to the same degree that originally the browser-based applications and then mobile applications did in the enterprise.

Jim Marous:
So do you see the IT department no longer working the way it used to, but really going to this model going forward and then work with outsider citizen development concept to make this even more robust? Do you see the entire IT department completely shifting in the way they do things then?

Charles Lamanna:
Yes. And the frame that I like to use in my mind is, folks remember the transition where projects went from waterfall to agile and what that meant from a technology change perspective and a culture change perspective and just a day-to-day operations perspective.

Charles Lamanna:
I think citizen development and low-code is going to change the same level in terms of how IT groups work, embracing concepts like the Fusion team and where you actually have business users and citizen developers collaborating with IT professionals as well as empowering business units and business-embedded developers to go contribute to solutions is going to become the new way of getting the job done.

Charles Lamanna:
And for the most enlightened customers that we work with, this is what it looks like. It doesn't look like IT organizations. So before where I'd say in an ivory tower far removed from the business, instead, the future is going to be IT far more aligned with the business. And not just for sharing requirements, but actively building these solutions. And that's what the technology changes enable through low-code and no-code.

Jim Marous:
Well, it seems it's in banking, you have data analytics. We've always used a data analytics or recently, but in the last 10, 20 years really focused on risk and fraud. We're now talking a lot more about using data analytics and innovation and development in the marketing sense, what I'll call building a better experience, building a better customer journey.

Jim Marous:
How do you see low-code and no-code helping increase the speed of innovation, but just importantly, because I'm a marketer, helping the market actually go to that quantum marketing concept of being able to use data and analytics fast to be able to iterate and provide solutions in an instant?

Charles Lamanna:
I think part of how this change will happen is what having more proper solutions will enable. And let me expand on that. By moving out of Excel spreadsheets and out of email and out of human middleware to do some of the most important processes in any financial institution and instead moving to a world where you actually have an app for that, even if it's a custom bespoke process that you need and there's nothing available off the shelf, low-code/no-code makes it possible to bring that structure and that standardization to a proper application solution at a reasonable budget in a reasonable timeframe.

Charles Lamanna:
And what we see with many of our customers is instead of having all of these on the side and ad hoc processes that run so many core parts of the business, it's going to move to a collection of applications which can enforce compliance, enforce validation, and enforce security as you run through these steps. Because far better than depending on training or communication is to actually have technology that makes sure as people run through these processes, the rules, the standard and the processes are being followed. So we think creating these apps will actually elevate a lot of these programs and processes to a model where it's far easier to enforce compliance.

Charles Lamanna:
Instead of the flip side of that too, of course, is, once you have an application which is generating this data in structured way, you can start to analyze that data. So that's why for example, at Microsoft, we talk about low-code apps and low-code BI as being hand in hand. The app generates structured data, the BI analyzes the data that's generated. So you get compliance, you get conformance and you get intelligence and insights based on those apps.

Charles Lamanna:
And I think everybody knows that there are so many processes inside of the bank where they work today that just runs by email and spreadsheet and humans. You cannot put data in AI and intelligence on that. You just can't. You got to build an app for that. So that's the big change in why we think low-code actually opens a lot of doors when it comes to these compliance and security conversations as well.

Jim Marous:
So let's say I'm a programmer that I work on a individual base with a small team and I build a solution for bank A, does this allow the opportunity for an outsider, from the bank's perspective, to actually take that solution that serves a lot of different needs for multiple institutions and actually take that same applications and deploy that other institutions as well, just open up the whole innovation and programming process across the whole industry so that independent players can actually bring solutions to the table on to financials institutions almost immediately?

Charles Lamanna:
Yes. And it's through two pieces. The first is, of course, complete solutions like you mentioned, but also reusable components. So we're working with a few large banks today for Microsoft's low-code offering Power Platform where they're going to generate reusable components and solutions that other banks can use right off the shelf.

Charles Lamanna:
And because it's built with low-code, it's easy to be customized and tailored for each bank because I think they rhyme these common processes and timing use cases rhyme between the banks, but they're never exactly the same. So it's always a solution which is tailored bank by bank.

Charles Lamanna:
So that's something that we're already seeing in earnest. And we're seeing across both the finished solution, as well as building blocks and components which people can reuse inside of solutions they build inside of their own banking scenarios.

Jim Marous:
So you're actually saying you can see institutions building white label solutions that they can actually sell to other financial institutions. Because again, it doesn't matter what you're using. It's still going to be customized to the individual institution, but this really opens the door for all kinds of innovation and programming benefits out there that financial institutions can work together on.

Charles Lamanna:
Absolutely. And one of the things that we're seeing a lot of is, there's two main types of, I say financial institutions and there's new FinTech and then say banks that have been around for a while. And the banks that have been around for a while are going through this big digital transformation in reimagining process. And being able to leverage technology across the board in these no-code/low-code platforms makes it more straightforward and provides a clearer path to be as efficient and as competitive as those digitally native FinTech companies. And watching this unfold in the market is one of the most exciting of our job because we get to see both things happen the same time. Companies being born in the cloud and companies reinventing themselves in the cloud and doing it together in a very collaborative way.

Jim Marous:
So what are some of the challenges you see from banks and credit unions who are trying to embrace these platforms to modernize their applications? How does the Power Platform and things that you're doing at Microsoft help address these challenges?

Charles Lamanna:
The big thing is, in order to become or to complete digital transformation, a bank needs to start to think like a technology firm to a degree, which means you digitize, you automate and you bring efficiency throughout applications for all parts of your business.

Charles Lamanna:
And to do that, you need developers. And how we started the conversation where there's a huge shortage of developers right now, and every company's trying to go fill those positions, and the developers you have are extremely overworked and super busy and oversubscribed. These low-code tools like the Power Platform make it get possible to start to close that gap with companies which are completely digitally native.

Charles Lamanna:
So that's where we see the real opportunity because the large financial institutions, they have capital, they have expertise, they are highly compliant and manage risk very well, but they're missing and lacking of the apps and the automation and the data understanding.

Charles Lamanna:
Low-code makes the time to close that gap compared to companies which maybe started that way, it makes it a lot smaller and it closes the window. It makes it possible for them to start to deliver world-class employee experience, world-class customer experience while still preserving the brand and preserving all of their risk and compliance profiles by using these tools to get solutions built faster than ever before.

Jim Marous:
Now, we usually focus this podcast on financial institutions, but when you're looking at low-code/no-code, what industries right now are more advanced? What industries are doing this really well that are good models for other industries?

Charles Lamanna:
So I say one of the ones which has surprised me to a degree, but has happened very quickly is around pharmaceutical and life sciences and chemistry organizations. And I think that surprised me for two reasons. The first is there's a head manufacturing component in addition to heavy information work component. Like you'd have to not only design medicines or design chemicals, but you also then have to manufacture them in giant plants.

Charles Lamanna:
But the second thing is, there's actually a high degree of regulation, particularly around life sciences. And we've seen to our earlier things starting slow, but then going really fast. We've actually seen GXP certification, which is a high, like a big regulation in that industry. Once we got that, we saw a rapid expansion of adoption of these tools because it's a technical community. These are engineers, scientists who maybe weren't developers in the past that can now solve their digital problems themselves.

Charles Lamanna:
So that's I say one place which has been really interesting in a very fast adoption curve. And I think financial services is similar in that you have a highly technical, analytical logical user base that just wants to get these tools in front of them. They're going to go start to solve their own problems as fast as they can.

Jim Marous:
It's interesting because financial institutions as we know have just reams of data. There's this data. They're not really formed really well. A lot of times you're in silos and things like that, but really, to deploy any of these solutions, you need the data. How do we work to make it so that there's a good data quality? How do you ensure that in a low-code/no-code environment as opposed to one that's very highly structured within an IT department? How does a Power Platform help customers manage their data, but ensure that both internal and external data works well with each other?

Charles Lamanna:
There's a few pieces to it. The first is one of the things that we're very focused on is this idea of data connectors. And what it enables is these no-code/low-code solutions are able to connect data where it already is without having to copy it out of those systems.

Charles Lamanna:
So that way, if you already have data stored in a highly structured schematized database or in a SaaS application, these low-code solutions can connect to and operate on the data in its source system so you don't betray or break any of the security models or data scheme that you created. So data connectors is a big item.

Charles Lamanna:
Second thing is we provide a highly schematized, highly discoverable data platform inside of our low-code offering. It's something called Dataverse. And makes it very easy to define and discover reusable data and understand what does a customer record look like or what the account record look like and that type of thing. So we actually guide these low-code/no-code developers to use the right data models and store it in the right place with the right security.

Charles Lamanna:
Then the third piece is one of the things is a little more futuristic, but which is pretty exciting, which is about converting unstructured data to structured data using some AI capabilities. So we have a bunch of these built into our offering, which helps you do things like take big flat files or big spreadsheets or even big unstructured catalogs of data like contracts, and then convert that into a structured representation. Because once it's structured, you can do analytics, but you can also start to do process and automation on top of it as well.

Charles Lamanna:
And that third piece is where we think a lot of innovation will happen because it's going to take a long time to schematize all the data and bring all the data into a data lake in a typical bank or large enterprise. But if you can use AI, you can actually adapt a lot of it and start doing process and insights where it already is. So those are the three big items, data connectors, Dataverse, data platform and AI that really are making it easy to take advantage of the data that you already have.

Jim Marous:
Most of our listeners tend to be, what I'm going to say, front office-facing employees. They're in charge of marketing. They're in charge of product development. Many times they're in charge of the retail banking ecosystem, but they're not the programmers, they're not the IT people. That's not the majority of our listeners. So if I'm an outward facing employee right now, why should I care about low-code to no-code? Why, why does this even make a blip of my screen of awareness with everything else going on? What, what is really in the future and how does this impact

Charles Lamanna:
Me? I would say there is a selfish reason and a business oriented reason. The selfish reason is that we think in the future, many of these front facing roles will need to have low-code or no-code of element as a skill to be successful. Just like you're expected to be able to send emails, do video conferencing or work an Excel spreadsheet or build a PowerPoint presentation. You'll be expected to be able to do no-code low-code development in the future, right? So that's, that's a selfish reason of play. I'd make second aspect is every single and any job deals with a ton of repetitive monotonous systems or applications, which are just mind bogglingly, dated and inefficient. What if I told you that you can now actually quickly build your own solution to improve that system today without having to get budget work with it or do something I think beg and plead for a big transformation project, you can go find those efficiencies.

Charles Lamanna:
One of my favorite is every marketing department does a massive amount of data movement. I remember talking to a customer which was telling me that they had 40 people who, who spent four hours each week just copying from one system to another, to run their marketing campaigns.

Charles Lamanna:
What if you could automate that in an afternoon? You could spend one afternoon and say four hours for you and everyone else on that team for the rest of the year every week. That's a huge opportunity. And there's probably hundreds of things like that in the department where you work.

Charles Lamanna:
So you can be a more efficient, more competitive and more digitally capable department in a completely self-service and independent way using these tools. And you can develop the next generation of skills that you'll need from a digital and computing workforce of the future, even though you're not a coder or IT worker

Jim Marous:
As Microsoft, you're going out there and knocking on doors for financial institutions. You're selling them on the concept that they're going to be able to move faster in a more agile way and build solutions in a more undefined way, but in a way that's going to move them forward twice, three times, four times faster than ever or before. That said, and it all sounds great, what is the pushback you get? What seems from your perspective to be the reason why finance institutions may hesitate and may not embrace this?

Charles Lamanna:
Yeah, I would say risk and compliance is a common concern. I think we have a very... We've gone through this process with many large banks, including many large GXP banks, and we've been able to go push through that and get to a good place that makes everybody feel comfortable from the CISO to the risk and compliance officer to the business user. But I would say risk and security is a concern.

Charles Lamanna:
And second thing is culture and change management. When the personal computer arrived in the workplace 30 years ago, that was a big change for a lot of people and it didn't happen overnight. And it took investment in training reskilling and creating the right environment so everybody would end up feeling comfortable in front of a personal computer. The same type of thing's going to happen for these no-code/low-code tools. It's going to show up. It's going to be a huge productivity boom, but we're going to have to take everybody, take a billion office workers around the globe on the journey to use these tools to do their job more efficiently. And that just doesn't happen overnight and doesn't happen without some effort.

Charles Lamanna:
So I think risk and compliance and culture and change management are the two biggest things. The good news is, there's a lot of material and a lot of companies that have already done that. Gartner thinks 65% of all enterprise app dev will be done in low-code environments by 2024. Power Platform, the Microsoft low-code offering is in 97% of the Fortune 500 already. The moment it's happening today. So I think resistance is only delaying something that's going to happen just from the workforce bringing it into to work over time.

Jim Marous:
Just so my listeners to understand, I did not poke Charles to say this thing and I didn't prod or pay him any money to say that it gets down to leadership and culture. But everybody has to realize and think more than ever that this is all new stuff. This is not banking it as that usual. It's not what we're used to. It takes a chain age mindset. And in addition, in some cases, it's going to take employees to relearn things or learn things for the first time around things like low-code and no-code.

Jim Marous:
And I think that what you said there is so important because it's not doing things as normal. The good news is, we have a good model, I believe, from the cloud platform experience where organizations just were pushing back all the time on not wanting to do the cloud and not wanting to move the cloud for the same reason. You mentioned about low-code/no-code.

Jim Marous:
However, there's very few organizations now that are hesitating to go into the cloud because they've resolved some of the issues that they were dealing with. I think this is another example of this. We've talked about the intricacies and the power of low-code/no-code. As our last question, can this be implemented by organizations of all sizes? Is this really an ability that really right now is for the biggest organizations only?

Charles Lamanna:
I'd say every company everywhere is able to take advantage of low-code. And that's the beauty of the cloud delivery model. Anyone listening in, in less than five minutes could probably sign up for five different low-code products and get started. And what that means is, you don't have to have a huge IT budget. You don't have to have an army of developers. You can build solutions today that'll make you run more efficiently. Whether you're a very small regional credit union, all the way up to a GXP bank that has to track and report with the federal reserve, you can use this tool to be more efficient, stay compliant, and be better for your customers and employees.

Jim Marous:
Well, it's interesting is a way to get, you brought up earlier way to get, your foot wet, is to integrate with something that a financial institution has already done where they can actually provide you a white label version of something that was developed in low-code/no-code, but can be deployed at an institution just wanting you to change the way things are being done.

Jim Marous:
Charles, thank you so much for being on the show today. It's been a great conversation. As anybody who knows me knows that this is somewhat out of my wheelhouse, but it's something that I'm trying to embrace and understand better because it really is a dress we're going. And it solves a problem that I had to deal with 40 years ago, which is, working with the IT department to get something handled that in many cases, they didn't even understand what I was talking about. And that's a hard solution to come to when they don't know where you're heading and they're being asked to get you there. So thanks again, Charles. I appreciate it.

Charles Lamanna:
Thanks for having me, Jim. And I'll make you a low-code user yet.

Jim Marous:
Thanks a lot. I appreciate that. Charles, as I said, it's interesting in this podcast today. This is not my comfort zone. It's not something I really understand. I'm getting to understand it more because my son is a business analyst and analytic engineer, I guess he's, for a pharmaceutical company. But you mentioned, I think in a precall with us around some people that have completely transformed their careers by reaching out and trying to find new ways to learn how to do the things we were talking about. You mentioned, I guess some guy at Heathrow or something like that? What was that story?

Charles Lamanna:
Yeah. So it's amazing what you can learn on YouTube. It's the YouTube generation. So Samit Saini who is a security guard at Heathrow Airport, he was able to learn Power apps and low-code completely on his own just by watching a bunch of different YouTube videos. And now he works full-time in IT. So completely reimagining his career and a complete change for him. And that's the thing that gets me most excited about low-code is an idea of the people who historically couldn't be a developer because they maybe didn't have that background with comps or writing code, now are helping build solutions in a way that wasn't possible before.

Jim Marous:
Well, it's interesting because my son, he wanted take more and more of the coding and he said the problem was there just weren't as many teachers available teaching this stuff because they'd all gone to private industry. And to your point, he's learned a lot of what he's doing today by YouTube videos and by other people that he knew doing things. And you have to be self-taught. It's a completely different way of learning than what I went through. And he shows the power of the computer age and all the dynamics. And it's interesting because the story you brought up rings true at home. So again, thanks for your time today. I'm glad we were able to spend some time together.

Charles Lamanna:
Yeah, of course. And I think just one thing to add on that, the idea of democratizing learning by making it available on the internet to anyone anywhere, that's just amazing transformative power from a workforce perspective. So I think that will be a big deal in the next five, six years as well.

Jim Marous:
I try to avoid politics in the podcast, but it's interesting because the whole dynamic of not having to go to college and there's other ways to learn now than there ever been, I think it's very valid, especially in the area you were talking about today in the podcast. Yeah, thanks a lot again. Appreciate everybody at Microsoft for helping us out here.

Jim Marous:
Thanks for listening to Banking Transformed, just raise a top five banking podcast and the winner of three international awards for Podcast Excellence. If you enjoy today's show, please give our show a five star rating on your preferred podcast platform. Also, be sure to catch my recent articles on the financial brand and the research we're doing for the digital banking report.

Jim Marous:
This has been a production of Evergreen podcast. A special thank you to a producer Leah Longbrake, audio engineer, Sean Rule-Hoffman, and video producer, Will Pritts. I'm your host, Jim Marous. Until next time, remember, that in the past creating applications provided a [inaudible 00:35:01] build opportunity. The future of creating applications may be no coding at all.

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