The rapid rise in the usage of smartphones and tablets has completely revolutionized the way people live and do activities. Enterprise app development is a process in which we develop mobile apps for enterprise businesses.
Today, you can find a mobile app for every single purpose. While most of these applications are meant for general use, businesses are looking for enterprise mobile app development services that can address their challenges and make their operations smooth. In this blog, we are going to discuss enterprise mobile app development with features, technologies, benefits, challenges, and cost.
- What is an Enterprise App?
- The Market of Enterprise Mobile Applications
- Benefits of Enterprise Mobile App Development Services
- Why Enterprises Should Adopt a Mobile First Strategy?
- Enterprise Mobile App Development Strategy
- Mobile App Development for Enterprise – Important Things to Consider
- Key Challenges In Enterprise Mobile App Development
- Cost of Enterprise Application Development
- Wrapping Up:
What is an Enterprise App?
Enterprise applications are complex, scalable, and massive apps or software built to work for business or corporate environments. These are completely different from the common mobile apps used by general audiences. Based on various components, the enterprise apps are mission-critical and deliver business logic, services, and tools for efficient and productive business processes and operations.
Such applications are created with several sets of programs, keeping in mind the applications of the software or app. Mostly, it is expected that such apps will help in managing various types of business processes. The architecture used here is also of an enterprise level.
Billing software or apps, customer relationship management (CRM) software, supplier relationship management software, enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems, etc. are some of the examples of enterprise mobile apps. To sum up the definition of an enterprise app, it can be said that its role is to operate multiple business operations and departments. Oracle and SAP are fine examples of such software or applications.
The Market of Enterprise Mobile Applications
As an increasing number of enterprises are keeping or shifting their focus to enabling an environment for their workforce that is more comfortable, productive, better, and innovative, the use of enterprise apps is on the rise. As per Gartner’s recent research, organizations around the world are increasing their IT spending on enterprise software. It is the second-highest priority for them in 2024 and the coming years.
In the US, organizations are gaining over 240 hours of annual work from the staff using enterprise apps. Moreover, 87% of these organizations have enterprise app accessibility enabled on smartphones.
Statista’s report shows that of the $4.07 trillion IT spending around the world, more than $517 billion goes on enterprise application development services. The revenue from the enterprise application software is expected to be $224.8 billion.
As per IDC, the revenue from enterprise apps globally witnessed a growth of 7.5% to over $225 billion in 2019. In addition, the report also reveals that the global enterprise apps market will grow at a CAGR of 3.4% year over year and reach $265 billion by 2024. The growth is driven by the trend of investing in digital transformation initiatives.
SAP, Oracle, Salesforce, Intuit, and Microsoft are the leading players in the enterprise software market.
Benefits of Enterprise Mobile App Development Services
There are several significant advantages of mobile app development for enterprise that make organizations consider their implementation. By hiring an enterprise app developer or an enterprise app development company, they can achieve the following benefits:
CIOs in large organizations consider enterprise mobile app development a priority to drive innovation and accelerate business growth. They create a unique strategy focused on ‘bring your own application (BYOA)’ to keep pace with the rapidly changing trends in digital transformation.
Large enterprises always look for ways to optimize the resources required for a particular project or task. Implementation of innovative enterprise-grade software and apps is one of the most preferred ways for them to achieve this goal. It saves the time of teams required to perform tasks and minimizes the number of members in teams for task completion. This is among the primary reasons businesses prioritize the use of such apps.
Data validation and analysis
Enterprise apps and software work as centralized systems for broad sets of data coming from multiple sources. With effective software, this data can be used to find valuable insights, validation, and many more purposes. Using the data insights, businesses can adapt their strategies, improve customer experience, and boost employee productivity.
With mobile app development for enterprise, businesses can enable enterprise mobility. This results in improving the productivity of employees, process streamlining, and making the collaboration on projects seamless. The teams can access important data easily and securely from wherever they want. Since every employee uses a smartphone today, having an enterprise app proves to be a great option for businesses.
Additional benefits of enterprise apps include the ability of teams to work beyond their working hours, a rise in return on investment (ROI), better internal communication, and increased employee satisfaction and loyalty.
Why Enterprises Should Adopt a Mobile First Strategy?
Companies should prioritize mobile as it is a dominant tool for access to the internet today. With digitalization happening all across the globe, people have bid goodbye to old school things like laptops and computers and switched entirely to mobile phones, Hence, mobile phones are the best for enterprise apps.
Google has also updated its algorithm and prioritized the mobile-first index. Another benefit of mobile phones is that they are portable and can be accessed at any given point in time. Also, they can be carried anywhere. The business owners have the advantage of accessing the tools that they need at any time. This helps in increasing the productivity of a company and work can be done easily and quickly.
Here is why it is important to have enterprise apps
- Sorts out and streamlines the process of a company including reporting and smooth communication. It results in better quality work and the workplace and healthy communication between various departments of an organization. It also helps build collaborations between departments for the smooth functioning of an organization.
- While working on complicated projects, the employers might come across complex issues and might need help with the strategies. This is when the enterprise app comes into the picture and gives a proper solution to the company. It helps in saving a lot of time.
- The employees might not be readily available in the office, and similarly an employee might need access to the data while working from outside the office premises. This app is helpful in this case as they can access data round the clock from any part of the world.
- The enterprise app also promotes transparency in all departments of a company.
- It also helps a company in picking up its pace while working on something and increases the cost-effectiveness, which is one of the most important goals of an organization. There have been times when the app developers have faced problems and limitations while developing an app. However, the cloud technology used by enterprise app developers has sorted complex issues and reduced problems faced by mobile app developers. An organization can select any enterprise app according to their requirement.
Enterprise Mobile App Development Strategy
Since enterprise app development is a complicated and time-consuming practice, it is crucial to have the right strategy in place. The role of strategy is to develop the app considering its complexity, features and functionalities, skills and experience required from the developers, and the overall cost. Below, you will find the primary steps to create a robust strategy for the enterprise app development services.
1. Promising Idea
The most important aspect of a successful project is a great idea. The idea should cover who will be your target audience, what challenges it will address, what is the overall purpose, etc. Based on these points, you can then decide on the specifications, create a basic outline, and estimate the time required to complete the project. Moreover, the enterprise mobile developer also gets to understand the project’s core aim.
2. Deciding Operating Systems
Once the idea has been finalized, it is time to choose the right operating system for development. This decision usually depends on the user base or the audience. For instance, if the majority of the app audience will be Android users, then you can go for Android app development. In case, there is a mixed audience of Android and iOS users, then the good decision will be to build it for both platforms.
While the decision between Android and iOS is not very difficult, you can also consider hybrid app development or cross-platform mobile app development. The benefit of cross-platform application development is that the same code can be used to create apps for multiple platforms, such as iOS and Android.
3. Choosing Tools and Integrations
You have to select the right tools, platforms, and systems to integrate with your enterprise app. For instance, most of the mission-critical applications are today hosted on cloud services, like Microsoft Azure, Amazon Web Services (AWS), Google Cloud Platform, etc. Your app must also be hosted on a cloud platform rather than a traditional platform. There are numerous benefits of choosing the cloud, such as scalability, cost-effectiveness, productivity, mobility, etc.
The other tools you may need to choose while creating the enterprise mobile application strategy include Adobe, Xamarin, Kony, SAP, Alpha, etc. The integrations and tools you use depend on the requirements and functionalities you want to have in the app. Based on your requirements, finalize the right tools so that the app’s performance doesn’t get hampered.
4. Core Functionalities and Prototype
At this stage of the enterprise mobile application strategy, you need to make decisions about the core features and functionalities you want to have in the final version of the app. On the basis of these functionalities and features, the mobile app development company will build a prototype of the product. This prototype will give an idea of what to expect when the app is released.
The role of creating the prototype is to save the time and resources required to build the app, as well as the time required to integrate additional features. Every decision should be based on what the organization expects from the application and what challenges must be addressed.
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5. App Development & UI/UX Design
It is the most crucial stage that brings everything into action. The enterprise app developers start working on the code and the development process. It is also considered the most time-consuming stage of the enterprise mobile app development services. While the back-end developers work to create a robust foundation and functional part of the app, the front-end developers and designers handle the user interface (UI) and user experience (UX) part of the application.
The aim of the mobile app developers is to ensure that the result is a user-friendly application that is intuitive, visually appealing, and fully functional. Once the development and UI/UX design are done, the project reaches the final stage before the release, which is testing.
During the app testing, the experienced team of QA testers works on finding the potential bugs and flaws that remain while building the app. Before launching the project, it is crucial to fix the bugs so that the users don’t face any issues while using it.
Mobile App Development for Enterprise – Important Things to Consider
UX must be your priority always, or else you will have an application for the sake of it. Whether the users use it from their smartphones or tablets, the app should provide a great user experience and meet their expectations. Many businesses simply look to import the existing features of a desktop app into a mobile app. But this proves to be a mistake because the way people use mobile apps and desktop apps is different.
While using mobile apps, the screen size is smaller, the processor and other resources are limited, and the mechanisms of input are different. Therefore, these factors must be considered while developing an enterprise mobile app. Otherwise, the users will find it difficult to operate.
Take feedback from users
When finalizing the core features of the enterprise app, it is a good practice to survey the employees to know what they expect from an app. Eventually, they will be the ones to use it. So, conduct a survey through an email or other source and take their feedback about what features they think will make their lives easier.
An enterprise app should have real-time update functionality. It is a crucial part of the application because employees need to have access to the latest data and updates. They will be using it almost any time since they can access it using their smartphone. Hence, keep the app always connected and merge the changes in real-time or near real-time.
Security and governance
The security and governance of an enterprise application can never be ignored. Whether it is a complex app or a light one, these aspects need to be taken care of in all instances. The app holds crucial and confidential data and corporate information, which can’t be kept vulnerable to any sort of security risks or data breaches.
You need to integrate the right security tools and meet the governance guidelines. Access to data should also be kept limited and secure. Employee training also plays a big part in keeping the business app secure. For instance, they should use strong passwords for login, don’t access the app data from public internet networks, etc.
For a seamless experience and smooth performance of the app, consistent administration is crucial. The administration also helps in collecting important insights from data and making better decisions.
Many admins think of providing equal or the same level of access to all the employees because it is the easiest thing to go with. However, this can result in creating potential issues related to security. That’s why you must have a team of administrators or allow the team managers to provide access to employees only for the required functions, data, and tasks. For instance, someone from the support staff doesn’t need to access the data and files of the Digital Marketing or Sales team.
Option for the right enterprise app development company
While choosing an enterprise app development company, you must take care of several things because not every company holds expertise in enterprise mobile app development services. Here, we have shared with you the important things to consider.
The most important thing is the expertise and experience of the company in terms of developing enterprise-grade or business apps. These apps need a unique approach at different stages and time frames. Second, the enterprise app development company should be flexible with rolling out changes and updates to the app throughout the development cycle. So, flexibility and transparency are important
The third thing to consider is time efficiency. The app development team, UI/UX team, as well as testing team, should meet the deadlines of the tasks as decided. In short, the quality work should be delivered well within time. The fourth factor to consider is the security practices in terms of data, regulations, and compliance. The final product must exhibit all the essential data security and governance practices.
Lastly, the enterprise mobile app development company must provide support and maintenance for the long term after the project delivery. They should be ready to fix the bugs, resolve potential issues, and integrate new features when required.
Key Challenges In Enterprise Mobile App Development
Mobility is the prerequisite requirement of the future. An ever-increasing number of enterprise users are switching to the smartphones and tablet devices for catering their on-the-move needs. However, this mobile shift has caused a lot of vexation to the enterprise mobile app developers. Although this specific development domain holds countless opportunities, there are a few challenges that are impeding the path of developers.
Let’s have a look:
The Challenge of Emerging Technologies
Mobile app developers toil to keep themselves updated with the ever-emerging technologies so that their app finds absolute relevance in today?s time of fast-paced developments in hardware and OS technology.
- The rampant volumes of iOS APIs propelled in recent times astonish even the most adroit app developers.
- Enterprise app developers constantly struggle to envisage some pristine tooling features so as to align them with their app’s features.
Rapid evolution in the technologies further compounds the misery. Earlier, an app update was called for comfortably after a months’ time, however now, the need arises in just a day or two. If you are not swift in taking an action, your app stands at the risk of turning dysfunctional. There is no panacea for this predicament. Even the best developers have to remain on their toes and track down the emerging technologies in order to observe success.
The Challenge of Device Fragmentation
The immensely splintered digital marketplace, owing to the regular treadmill of brand new devices and OS further adds to the doldrums of app developers. Virtually, all app developers today are working without knowing their target platform. The gigantic number of devices available in the market today practically makes it impossible to test the app for a seamless usage on all platforms.
The developers face a hard choice while deciding on which device to invest in for testing their either android app or iPhone app. Not so long ago, this challenge of device fragmentation was non-existent for enterprise mobility solution developers as they could direct all their energies on the few restricted number of platforms and OS used by the enterprise.
However, the coming up of stern policies such as BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) have forced the enterprise apps to support a plethora of mobile devices. There is no shortcut to this problem; however, the app developers can revamp their testing and development efforts by:
- Identifying the probable platforms in which your mobile app would operate.
- Engaging sound and dependable app development practices across all platforms thus ensuring absolute consistency in functionality and feel of the app.
- Fabricating globally recognizable yet culturally sensitive app graphics.
User Experience, often abbreviated as UX is the key to make your app triumphant. As per Forrester, 64% of the employees do not use enterprise mobile apps, the reason being poor UX. The paucity of time has led enterprise users to value simplicity. Therefore, the real challenge in enterprise app development is to create a powerful feature-packed app that fulfills the required aesthetics related to corporate branding, while keeping simplicity as the foremost criterion.
A responsive app design with a minimalist approach is a great way of developing rewarding mobile apps. However, success eventually depends on the innovative strategies that are deployed for developing a seamless UI. Stocking the app with analytics so as to track the engagement metrics, regularly observing crash logs, having a structured feedback mechanism, etc. aid the enterprise app developers to tweak their apps, but the developers still have a hard time setting up these processes.
Every operating system has a distinct architecture and the different mobile platforms extend dynamic levels of support when it comes to securing information stored on the device. Therefore, it?s hard to synthesis the actual degree of security required. You can either encrypt your valuable data by storing it in a safe folder within the device or, you can integrate with the enterprise?s LDAP directory.
Challenges Related to Content Management and Data Access
For creating robust enterprise mobile apps, access to corporate data is a critical parameter that must be given primary importance. Corporate data usually occupy the backend database hence it is an imperative concern to manage the data stored in the device?s native file system so that it can even be accessed while online. Just assume, a salesperson needs to download the inventory document before meeting his client but he is stuck with no network. In such a case, the app is not only required to have data storage capabilities but also needs synchronization capabilities so as to update the inventory levels when the salesperson gets online.
Therefore, there is a need for ensuring integrated and seamless sync of all data between the enterprise app and the backend. Also, packing together various distinct content types- images, videos, text, animation into monolithic expansion files for uploading on different app stores is another major challenge.
Challenge of Development Technology
HTML-CSS3 is an exceptional development technology that permits to build strong enterprise apps in terms of cost, enhanced portability across various platforms and reduced time to market. However, at the same moment, HTML comes with few limitations related to data security, local data storage and more. Some other technologies indubitably offer better platform-specific enterprise mobile application development leading to engaging UX and superlative performance, but they increase the time to market considerably.
The enterprise app developers face a tough time deciding upon a developing technology that will be a perfect fit for their app. comprehending the precise needs of the end-user is critical for deciding the enterprise mobile application development technology and approach. It must be understood that the victory of enterprise mobile app development does not merely lie in developing the app, but also ensuring a genuine and reliable distribution system.
Even after overcoming all challenges faced during the enterprise mobile application development process, the market for the Enterprise solution is tremendously flourishing hence several industrial verticals are propelled for a major brainstorming activity.
Cost of Enterprise Application Development
It is a vital and common question for enterprises looking for mobile app development. It is really a complicated task to calculate the total cost of mobile app development for enterprise. This is because several factors and aspects affect the cost. These factors may include the scope of work, functions, features, the time needed for developing the enterprise app, tools and systems to integrate, UI/UX design, the experience of the app developers, the location of the enterprise mobile app development company, etc.
Moreover, enterprise mobile application development is complex and need major work and updates. More factors like customization, access policies, monitoring, etc. also need to be taken care of. For cost estimates, you must get in touch with an enterprise mobile app development services provider and share your requirements.
Hope this guide to enterprise mobile app development services sorts out all your questions and doubts related to developing a business app. Undoubtedly, there are numerous benefits to having an enterprise app. Still, it is crucial to know the important factors to consider, create the right development strategy, and choose a reliable and expert company for mobile app development for enterprise.
Have any other doubts or queries? Feel free to connect with our experts or write in the comments below.