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Citizen Development Insights

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Citizen development is a disruptive approach to digital transformation and organizational innovation, where teams are empowered to turn ideas into applications using no-code/low-code technology. This blog provides insights, advice and practical knowledge from thought leaders and practitioners in Citizen Development.

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Cameron McGaughy
Ron Immink
Jody Temple White
Jason Mayall
Chandrasekaran Audivaragan
Jelili Odunayo Kazeem
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Vivek Goel
Derya Sousa
Ryan Whitmore
Justin Sears
Raveesh Dewan
Dalibor Ninkovic
Ian Gosling
Kimberly Whitby
Tara Leparulo

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Elizabeth Jordan
Arjun Jamnadass
Rogerio Sandim
Martin Kalliomaki
Richard Earley
Maelisa Woulfe
Octavio Arranz

Recent Posts

5 Top Citizen Development Myths Busted

Empowering Citizen Developers: Overcoming 5 Common Challenges Together

Citizen Development: The Path to Success Starts Small

Can No-Code/Low-Code ERP Replace Traditional ERP Platforms?

No Code, Big Bucks: How Citizen Developers Can Capitalize on the Future of Tech 

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Viewing Posts by Maelisa Woulfe

My Experience of the Citizen Developer Practitioner Course (2 of 2)

My Experience of the Citizen Developer Practitioner Course (2 of 2)

My Objective
As stated in my proceeding blog: Blog 1 of 2, my primary objective of completing this course was to test whether I gained the tools and knowledge that I would need to create effective applications to solve problems. 

Course Structure
The Practitioner Course focuses on the “Do” sections of the Citizen Development Canvas; Project Delivery and Capability Development. 


                                           

The course contains 8 modules:

  1. Introduction
    • Project Delivery Modules
  2. Hyper Agile SDLC
  3. Ideation 2.0                                        
  4. Suitability Assessment
    • Capability Development Modules
  5. Business Analysis and Design
  6. Project Risks & Enterprise Risk Requirements                              
  7. Application Design, Development and Deployment
  8. Conclusion  

As the Practitioner course is quite extensive, I decided to split my critique into 2 separate blogs (this is the second, click here to read my critique of the introduction and Project Delivery modules). In this blog, I will outline my experience of the Capability Development and conclusion modules of the course. Let’s get started! :) 

Module 5 – Business Analysis and Design
Business Analysis and Design enables Citizen Developer Practitioners and other stakeholder’s, to gain a vital understanding of how potential citizen development applications will work within an organization. In essence, this module gives the Citizen Developer insight into a citizen development applications broader impact on the organization.

The learning objectives of this module were outlined at the outset, you will have learned:
1.    How to apply Business Analysis and Design processes
2.    How to utilize Business and Analysis and Design tools
3.    How to gather additional Business Analysis documentation

The learning objectives of this modules were easily achieved. During the lesson I was introduced to tools that are not only useful for a Citizen Developer but also a consultant and business analyst (e.g. Process Architecture Model). The tools and templates were very useful and valuable. The table below summarizes my favourite aspects of the module and one way in which I think the lesson could be improved.

Module 6 – Project Risks & Enterprise Risk Requirements
The Project Risks & Enterprise Risk Requirements module contains a section on project risks and then moves on to explain and explore enterprise risk requirements (functional and non-functional). As a systematic learner, I loved the flow of this lesson.

 

By the end of this module, you will have learned:
1.    How to identify and track project risks
2.    How to create a stakeholder management plan
3.    How to create a communications management plan
4.    How to identify and track project requirements
5.    How to identify and track enterprise risk requirements

 

This lesson was excellent – I feel I achieved the learning objectives. The information was concise yet thorough. I have experience working with enterprise risks, however, until now, I did not have context on enterprise risk requirements. This module taught me all about them. The examples that were included and the sample projects further developed my understanding. Some of my favourite aspects and an item I personally think could be improved in future iterations are outlined below.

Module 7 – Application Design, Development & Deployment  
The Application Design, Development and Deployment module aims to give the Citizen Developer the tools they will need to get from the design, development and deployment stages of an application. This lesson covers quiet an extensive amount of material. It goes into detail about important aspects of each stage. 

By the end of this module, you will have learned:
1.    To use a variety of tools and techniques that will help you design your application
2.    The steps involved in the application development process
3.    The training and support plans that help with user adoption
4.    The two levels of deployment for applications

 

This lesson was full of valuable information. In essence, it covered the critical aspects of application design, development and deployment. My advice to learners when they take this module is to do further research into each stage if they are eager to learn more. The table below summarizes my favourite aspects of the module and an item I personally think could be improved in the future.

Module 8 – Conclusion
Similar to the introduction module, the conclusion module does what it says on the tin! It is a concise lesson that summarizes what you learned throughout the Citizen Developer Practitioner course. During the conclusion, a high-level overview of each module was carried out. A sneak peak of the Citizen Development Maturity Model was also included.

I found the modular recaps very useful. The overarching premise of each lesson was reiterated which enforced the learning for me. Some of my favourite aspects and items I personally think could be improved are outlined below.

Hindsight
My primary objective of completing this course was to test whether I gained the tools and knowledge that I would need to create effective applications to solve problems. I can proudly say that I feel as though I achieved my objective :) .

Closing Summary
I thoroughly enjoyed the Citizen Developer Practitioner Course. Each module had a defined purpose and it is very clear how each area of the canvas should be carried out. The course is self-paced so take your time going through each modules (you don’t want to miss anything important). I’m looking forward to taking the Citizen Developer Practitioner micro-credential in the coming days. I hope you enjoyed this mini-blog series! If you would like to share your thoughts on the course, please leave a comment below :) . 
 

 

Posted by Maelisa Woulfe on: May 31, 2021 04:05 AM | Permalink | Comments (7)

My Experience of the Citizen Developer Practitioner Course (1 of 2)

My Experience of the Citizen Developer Practitioner Course (1 of 2)

Background
As a consultant, upskilling and advancing my knowledge on new technological advances is key. I have completed a lot of research on low-code/no-code, i.e., Citizen Development, to date.

My Citizen Development Experience so Far
In January, I completed the Citizen Developer Foundation Course because I wanted to learn the basics in terms of citizen development. I definitely achieved this objective! Click here if you would like to hear more about my experience of this course!

I gained adequate knowledge to progress to the Practitioner Course once I completed the Foundation. Although Foundation is not a mandatory pre-requisite, I recommend taking Foundation first if you would like to enhance your understanding of citizen development as a whole.

Similar to what I did for the Foundation Course, I’m now going to document my experience of the Citizen Developer Practitioner Course… here it goes!

My Objective
My primary objective of completing this course was to gain tools and knowledge to create effective applications to solve problems. I was interested in what these would be and how I could apply them in my role.

Course Structure
The Practitioner Course focuses on the “Do” sections of the Citizen Development Canvas; Project Delivery and Capability Development.


                                           

The course contains 8 modules:

  1. Introduction
    • Project Delivery Modules
  2. Hyper Agile SDLC
  3. Ideation 2.0                                        
  4. Suitability Assessment
    • Capability Development Modules
  5. Business Analysis and Design
  6. Project Risks & Enterprise Risk Requirements                              
  7. Application Design, Development and Deployment
  8. Conclusion  

As the Practitioner course is quite extensive, I am going to split my critique into 2 separate blogs (this is the first). In this blog, I will outline my experience of the introduction and Project Delivery modules of the course. Let’s dig in!

Module 1 - Introduction to Citizen Development
This module does what it says on the tin! It is a concise introductory module that lays the foundation for subsequent lessons. The narrator explains that the Citizen Development Canvas will act as the roadmap for each module in this course. The basics of the course were covered in this lesson:

1. Course Basics
How to navigate through the course and new course features were discussed. Items such as; tips from the field, downloads, sample projects and knowledge checks are unique additions to the Citizen Developer Practitioner Course. This section outlined what these features are and how to get the best out of each one.

2. Course Outcomes
Over the course of 8 modules, you will learn how to:

  1. Determine if your problem can be solved with a Citizen Development process
  2. Effectively brainstorm solutions
  3. Evaluate the challenges that your app must overcome
  4. Gather the data and resources you will need
  5. Bring your project to fruition

By completing the introductory module, I was content that I knew what to expect throughout the course. I have created a table that summarizes my favourite aspects of the module and a way in which I think the lesson could be improved in the future.

Module 2 - Hyper-Agile SDLC
As someone who had no prior knowledge or experience with the software development lifecycle (SDLC), I loved this module. The traditional SDLC was introduced, then Agile SDLC and the Hyper-Agile SDLC. As a structured learner, getting an overview of each SDLC enabled my understanding of the evolution of Hyper-Agile SDLC.

The learning objectives that were set out for this module were clear and to the point, by the end of this module, you will have learned:

  1. The SDLC, Agile and Hyper-Agile SDLC methods
  2. How to evaluate citizen development project proposals
  3. How to use Spot Assessments to decide if your project is right for citizen development
  4. The three Hyper-Agile SDLC citizen development paths

At the end of this lesson, I feel I met the learning objectives. The Spot Assessment was the most intriguing tool in this module. The primary objective of this tool is to assess whether citizen development is a good fit for your project or not. The tools that are used to evaluate the Spot Assessment are the Scorecard and the Risk/Technical Grid. Once both of these are complete, you will know whether to proceed using citizen development for your project or not! If your project is a good fit for citizen development, you can determine which Hyper-Agile CD Path to follow based on the risk/technical complexity of your project (Fast-Track, Assisted Path or IT Delivery). The table below summarizes my favourite aspects of the module and one way in which I think the lesson could be improved.

Module 3 - Ideation 2.0
I had completed the Ideation 2.0 module in the Foundation Course so I was prepared for this lesson in the Practitioner Course. New material and learning aids were added to this module in the Practitioner Course. These made the module even better in my opinion.

The learning objectives of this module were outlined at the outset, you will have learned:

  1. What Ideation 2.0 is
  2. How to develop your squad
  3. How to apply Ideation 2.0 Methods and create the relevant outputs

I thought this module was excellent in the Foundation Course. However, I would rate it even higher in the Practitioner Course. The learning objectives were easy to achieve during this module. Similar to Ideation 2.0 in the Foundation Course, the content in this module (mainly the methods and outputs) are structured in a logical way which made the content easily digestible. The addition of the “how to develop your squad” section was also very valuable.

Module 4 – Suitability Assessment
The Suitability Assessment module was very interesting. The primary aim of this module is to enable the Citizen Developer and related stakeholders to conduct an assessment on whether citizen development would be a good fit for a project (or not).

The learning objective of this module are outlined below. By the end of this module you will have learned:

  1. How to perform Suitability Assessments for citizen development projects
  2. How to use Suitability Assessment tools and techniques

One of my key takeaways from this module is that citizen development can transform your operations; when citizen development is a suitable fit. It is critical to remember that citizen development is not suitable for every project. I enjoyed this lesson and met the learning objectives. Some of my favorite aspects of the lesson and an item I personally think could be improved are outlined below.

My Conclusion
So far, I am really enjoying the Citizen Developer Practitioner Course. I love what I have learned so far. It will be interesting to see if the Capability Development modules of the Citizen Developer Practitioner Course will be as insightful. Once I have completed these modules, I will report back and publish part 2 of this blog series.

Posted by Maelisa Woulfe on: May 24, 2021 05:03 AM | Permalink | Comments (11)

Citizen Development and Intrapreneurship

Introduction

Over the past number of months, I have been doing research into citizen development. In this blog, I will explore how citizen development can empower creative minds.

 

Entrepreneurship

Entrepreneurship is defined as the creation or extraction of value. It encapsulates the idea of setting up an enterprise to service needs. Traditionally, a multitude of steps must be taken if one is intent on becoming an entrepreneur. Research suggests that, at a minimum, most entrepreneurs must:  

  • Spot a gap in the market / find a large problem to solve
  • Prototype the product / service
  • Evaluate the product / service
  • Identify the target audience
  • Source Finance
  • Consider risk
  • Spend a lot of time & effort sourcing operational & human resources
  • Create an enterprise.

 

My Ambition… but Reality Strikes

One of my lifelong ambitions was to become an entrepreneur. I am passionate about people and wanted to address the needs of those who are unfulfilled by adding value to their lives and making a meaningful difference. Until recently, my goal was clear. I was determined to take the necessary steps, and, ultimately create an enterprise that would address unfulfilled needs… until I discovered citizen development.

 

Citizen Development

Citizen Development, is a phenomenon that enables any user to create applications without coding experience. As I said in a previous blog: “You do not have to be a software developer or an IT specialist to create an app anymore. Literally, anyone can create an application using citizen development if you have the appetite to learn.”

 

Key Insights

Over recent months, I have had the opportunity to conduct research into citizen development. During that time, I have learned a tremendous amount! Out of everything I have read and experienced, there were two key takeaways that stood out to me:

  1. Anyone with the appetite to learn can upskill and create applications that fulfill needs
  2. Organizations should leverage citizen development to gain transient advantages

Setting up an enterprise takes a huge amount of time and effort (not to mention the risk and liability that is involved). Since learning about citizen development, my entrepreneurial ambition has not changed, however, my roadmap has.

 

Same Ambition, Different Roadmap

Since discovering citizen development, I firmly believe intrapreneurship is my calling. I do not need to create an enterprise to fulfill unmet needs. I can leverage citizen development to create applications that will enable me to achieve the same goal. I do not need to take the traditional entrepreneurial steps. I need to continue on my learning journey and gain more experience with citizen development to achieve my ambition.

 

Intrapreneurship

“Intrapreneurship, unlike entrepreneurship, is a concept that says you have the resources in your employees to solve most of your business challenges. It is more than just the concept, it is the execution of actions and activities that increase productivity and profitability within a company” (Herrmann, 2021). Innovative employees are at the core of intrapreneurship.

 

They are creative people within the organization who are determined to solve problems and develop sustainable solutions. Intrapreneurs can easily leverage citizen development to realize their ambition. At a macro level, they can:

  1. Identify the business problem that needs to be solved
  2. Create a project proposal
  3. Ideate (via Really Round Robin sessions, Ideathons or Hackathons)
  4. Create and deploy the application

 

Why Intrapreneurs should Leverage Citizen Development?

Intrapreneurs can create apps that will meet specific needs, at a lower cost and in a fraction of the time it would have traditionally taken to create an enterprise to fulfill a specific need. By leveraging this capability, risk and liability is minimized. On top of that, you won’t have to source extraordinary amounts of finance or spend years establishing an organization.  

 

Case Study

Let’s take a look at a case study example of an intrapreneurial mind that leveraged citizen development to fulfill a business problem.

Posted by Maelisa Woulfe on: March 29, 2021 07:25 AM | Permalink | Comments (3)

My Experience of the Citizen Developer Foundation Course

My Experience of the Citizen Developer Foundation Course

 

My Objective

As a consultant, upskilling and advancing my knowledge on new technological advances is key. I have completed a lot of research on Low-Code/No-Code, i.e., Citizen Development, in recent months. My primary objective of completing this course was to further enhance my knowledge in this area.

 

Module 1- Introduction to Citizen Development

At the start of this module, the learning objectives are clearly stated. You will learn:

  1. What citizen development is
  2. Why citizen development is important
  3. The benefits of citizen development
  4. Who citizen developer are
  5. The role of citizen development in today’s business world.

By completing the module, I am happy to say that I achieved each of the learning objectives. The information included in this lesson was concise and interesting. The use of statistics was also very helpful. Instead of going into detail about how I found the module content or the elements in the module, I have created a table that summarizes my favourite aspects of the module and some ways in which I think the lesson could be improved.

My favourite aspects

Improvement Areas

Ability to easily navigate to LCNC vendor demos

It took me a while to realize that I needed to click ‘begin lesson’ on the first screen

The statistics are informative and interesting

I would have liked more information on the core benefit (unlock the full potential of Citizen Development)

I like how the benefits of citizen development are outlined for multiple user groups

The ‘exit course’ button at the end of the module could be changed to say ‘next module’

 

Module 2- Overview of the Citizen Development Canvas

The learning objectives were also very clear at the beginning of this module. You will understand:

  1. The purpose of the Citizen Development Canvas
  2. How the key areas and each individual element contained therein, work together to support the rapidly advancing and revolutionary practice of citizen development

 

At the end of this module, I feel as though I met the learning objectives. I found the Citizen Development Canvas a little overwhelming, albeit, extremely useful. The canvas is depicted in an aesthetic graphic. It is clear that a lot of time and energy went into the creation of the Citizen Development Canvas - it is thorough. The table below summarizes my favourite aspects of the module and some ways in which I think the lesson could be improved.

My favourite aspects

Improvement Areas

The video which featured Arjun Jamnadass was very interesting. It gave background as to how the Citizen Development Canvas was created

The case study examples could stand out more. If the user was not concentrating, the button could easily be missed

I like how the ‘do’ and ‘manage and lead’ aspects of the Citizen Development Canvas are portrayed

 

The case study examples enabled a practical understanding of common issues

 

 

Module 3- Ideation 2.0

Again, the learning objectives were made clear at the outset of this module. You will learn:

  1. What Ideation 2.0 is
  2. Why it is valuable
  3. The outputs of Ideation 2.0
  4. Approaches to Ideation 2.0

 

I found the learning objectives easy to achieve during this lesson. The content contained in this module is in a logical flow which really enabled me to gather and understand the content quiet easily. This was an excellent module. The information was straight forward and to the point (there was no padding).

My favourite aspects

Improvement Areas

Clear distinction between outputs (tools) and approaches

More information on Hackathons / Ideathons

Information is short and to the point

 

The case study is useful at the end of the module

 

 

Conclusion

Overall, I really enjoyed the Citizen Developer Foundation Course. I would rate the course very highly. My personal objective of taking the Citizen Developer Foundation Course was to enhance my knowledge in citizen development. I can proudly say, I have done just that. I am excited for the next course to be released.  If you are interested in taking this course, be sure to go to: https://www.pmi.org/citizen-developer and enrol. Let’s hope the next PMI Citizen Developer course is as enjoyable.                         

             

 

Posted by Maelisa Woulfe on: January 19, 2021 03:58 AM | Permalink | Comments (7)

My Citizen Development Journey

Introduction

As a consultant, upskilling and advancing my knowledge on new technological advances, is key. The concept of citizen development fascinates me. I am going to use this forum to document my citizen development learning journey.

How I heard about Citizen Development

At the start of last year, I attended a highly esteemed webinar. During the session, an executive discussed citizen development. I had never heard of this capability before. Being curiously minded, I made it my business to learn more about this topic.

Research

I have devoted a lot of my time into researching Citizen Development in recent months.  As stated in an article I previously wrote (ProjectManagement.com - How Citizen Development Can Deliver Transient Competitive Advantage), citizen development, enables anyone who wants to create an application to do so. You no longer have to be a software developer or an IT specialist to create an app. Any person who has the ambition to create an app can do so by leveraging citizen development.

There are multiple LCNC software vendors competing in this space (Kianda, WEM, Betty Blocks, OutSystems to name a few). Such vendors provide you with the tools required to create applications. All you need to do is select the vendor that can meet your needs. 

Realization

One gap I found while conducting research on citizen development was that, to date, there are no agnostic resources available for people to develop their knowledge or practical skills in terms of citizen development. Up until recently, there were a lack of educational resources available.

Enters the Citizen Development Space

When I heard that the Project Management Institute announced that they are creating a suite of citizen development products, I was happy. I am hoping that PMI will provide leaners with resources that will enable or enhance their knowledge or practical skills in this area. By doing this, I (along with others who have never created an app before), will be able to create applications in a secure and controlled manner.

PMI Launched the Citizen Developer Foundation Course

PMI launched the Citizen Developer Foundation course earlier this month. I had been keeping a close eye on the PMI Citizen Developer page for updates as to when this would be launched (on https://www.pmi.org/citizen-developer). When I saw the course become available, I jumped at the opportunity to take it. Signing up for the course was next on my “to-do” list.

Enrolment

I found the enrolment process very straightforward. There were very few steps involved. Here are the steps I followed:

  1. Go to: https://www.pmi.org/citizen-developer
  2. Scroll down and click on “Enroll Now”
  3. Log in using your PMI.org email address (you can also sign in using your Facebook, Google / LinkedIn details).
  4. Once you are signed in, scroll down and click “continue to course”
  5. Click “Buy the course”
  6. Click “Continue to Course”
  7. Start the course

Conclusion

I hope this blog gave you some insight into my citizen development journey so far. In my next blog, I will be documenting my experience of the Citizen Developer Foundation Course… Stay tuned :)

 

 

Posted by Maelisa Woulfe on: January 11, 2021 04:08 AM | Permalink | Comments (14)
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