Enabling and support the mobile enterprise Empowering solutions for business Developer enablement Communication channel for the developer community
Mobile Apps are the web sites for the mobile generation. They are now fully embedded within business process. Apps can provide game-changing utility for business efficiency and communication. Smartphones and tablets are part of everyday life for consumers. Apps are the best way to engage with consumers in meaningful ways.
“We should do an app.” Bottom line: Every enterprise must consider mobile apps as part of their marketing and IT strategies. Challenge: Apps are only worth doing if they’re done right (and there’s a lot that can go wrong).
An app is not a strategy. It has to start with a holistic mobile strategy – devices, carriers, program management, app development. Beware the “big idea” or the “get in the game” mentality. Align app strategy with overall digital, mobile, IT or advertising strategy. How does it work with your web site or advertising strategy? How does it support other business tools used by your mobile workforce?
Consider multiple platforms from the very beginning. Build platforms into an overall roll-out plan. Trying to retrofit later is costly and inefficient. iOS is important, but Android has become the most prominent mobile platform. Depending on end-user, Windows Phone and other platforms must also be considered. Tablets are here to stay and require their own functionality and UI.
Off-the-shelf apps can be more expensive long-term. Off-the-shelf apps can be the fastest way to plug your brand into mobile. Good for small business, but large companies need more. Meaningful strategic alignment, brand integration and customer engagement require custom development. Trying to scale an off-the-shelf app to a growing brand or business can cost more than doing it right in the first place.
Create an app to make things easier, not more complex. Listen to your end-users, understand your audience. Embed your app’s functionality into existing processes. Goal is to engage users and become a part of their mobile routine.
It’s the right thing to do. You have to do it right. There are a lot of moving parts and many considerations. Mobile technology is moving too fast for most IT departments to keep up with it. There is a difference between strategic mobile partners and “app builders”. Look for expertise and for partners who can provide a complete solution.