The good news is that these challenges can be overcome with proper planning and execution. A significant number of organizations have not yet developed any mobile apps, which means they’re in a prime position to adjust their strategies prior to implementation, rather than having to make time-consuming (and potentially costly) changes to what they’ve already created. To ensure the most productive and successful mobile app development, consider these four recommendations.
Identify App Development Priorities
If you have a number of mobile apps in development, it’s easy for your mobile development team to become overwhelmed or resort to fulfilling projects on a first-come, first-served basis. Instead, work with business stakeholders to prioritize your company’s mobile app development needs. By understanding the needs and the strategies that are driving each app request, you can create a prioritization process and project evaluation framework to make sure you are applying your mobile investment where it will have the most value.
Leverage the Model of Bimodal IT
A bimodal model is one of the most effective tools when it comes to keeping pace with rapidly evolving technology and market demands. As Gartner points out, IT departments are typically driven by a waterfall methodology that can quickly result in underestimated time and resources. A bimodal IT approach combines two models: mode 1, the creation and maintenance of stable back-end infrastructure and APIs that maintain uninterrupted access to enterprise applications; and mode 2, an accelerated, agile state that allows for rapid innovation on the front end to quickly meet changing business needs. With a bimodal approach in place, you have the stability to support and protect more traditional operations and processes while also having the speed to quickly and proactively introduce new mobile apps without the constraints of existing in a reactive state.
Hit the Gas with Rapid Mobile App Development (RMAD) Tools
In the previous paragraph, we talked about the importance of a bimodal approach and how it enables companies to quickly innovate. To fully leverage bimodal IT, you also need the tools that make that rapid development possible. As creators of a robust portfolio of digital supply chain solutions that includes a Digital Supply Chain Platform (DSCP)TM designed for rapid mobile app development, we understand that the right tools are a critical part of any mobility implementation. An enterprise is going to need a large number of mobile apps—and those apps will be fluid, changing and evolving in response to user feedback, industry needs, form factors and business requirements. Instead of being bogged down in complex tools that require hand-coding even the simplest change, rapid development tools like those in our DSCP enable a wider range of participants—business analysts, for example—to drive app development and enhancement, ensuring that the apps will evolve along with business requirements. And for those companies who need an even faster path to app deployment, tools like our supply chain apps are an ideal option. These complete componentized applications offer the flexibility to meet a variety of scenarios, including deployment straight out of the box, customization to meet a company’s specific business requirements or use as the building blocks to deliver completely new applications. Consider them a headstart to quickly get your enterprise mobile apps up and running with the agility and scalability to make changes as needed.
Strength in Numbers: Consider Mixed Sourcing
When it comes to creating optimal enterprise mobile apps, it’s worthwhile to consider augmenting your company’s in-house development team with third-party providers. Mobile development is complex—and if there’s a particular competency or need that’s not currently fulfilled within your company’s development environment, evaluate solution providers who can help you fill that gap. Gartner predicts that companies will, over time, improve their in-house mobile development skills, but the majority of organizations surveyed—55 percent—are successfully delivering their mobile apps using mixed sourcing.
Although mobile enterprise app demand is far surpassing development capacity, the aforementioned recommendations can help you make the most of your in-house resources while also providing solutions to fill critical capability gaps. As you begin to build your enterprise mobile apps, take a look at several UX considerations that will help you ensure optimal app performance. And if you have questions about our DSCP and its rapid mobile development capabilities, contact us.