The rapid rise in the usage of smartphones and tablets have completely revolutionized the way people live and do activities. Today, you can find a mobile app for every single purpose. While most of these applications are meant for general use, businesses are looking out for enterprise app development that can address their challenges and make their operations smooth.
The role of an enterprise app can be varied according to the organization that uses it. For instance, some enterprises can use it to improve the customer experience, while others may use it for their employee benefits. However, enterprise mobile application development is not an easy task. The developers who create such apps need to use several types of technologies, highly distributed environments, as well as different computing networks that are generally developed on a combination of traditional systems and hybrid infrastructure.
Let’s understand what exactly is an enterprise app, its benefits to businesses, the role of enterprise app development, strategy, and much more.
What is an Enterprise App?
Enterprise applications are complex, scalable, and massive apps or software built to work for the 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 Apps
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 spend on enterprise software. It is the second-highest priority for them in 2021 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 apps 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 software. 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 Apps
There are several significant advantages of enterprise applications that make organizations consider their implementation. By hiring an enterprise app developer or an app development company, they can achieve the following benefits:
- Drive innovation: 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.
- Optimize resources: Large enterprises always lookout 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 minimize 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.
- Boost productivity: With these sorts of apps, 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, increased employee satisfaction and loyalty.
What is Enterprise Mobile App Development?
Enterprise app development is the practise or process of developing an enterprise-grade application that can assist large businesses to improve the experience of employees, customers, partners, and optimize the business processes. Typically these apps are scalable, portable, and highly secure.
With enterprise app development services, large organizations can opt for getting a custom application developed for themselves. They can look out for expected features, functionalities, scalability, security, and storage according to their requirements.
The development process can begin with a number of different strategies, such as pre-packages code, no-code solutions, or fully customized applications, etc. Nowadays, many businesses go with services-based app development strategies. These strategies implement the cloud-based architecture, microservices, or even serverless architecture.
However, the development of enterprise apps is not as easy as it sounds. There are a lot of things that need to be considered while starting the development process. Right from choosing the app development framework to architecture to the entire tech stack, everything needs to be considered while developing a robust enterprise-grade app.
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 development of enterprise applications.
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 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 core aim of the project.
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 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 team 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 need to be addressed.
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 project. While the back-end developers work in creating 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 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 work on finding the potential bugs and flaws that remain during 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.
Important Things to Consider While Developing Enterprise App
UX must be your priority always, 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 to a mobile app. But this proves to be a mistake because the way people use the mobile app and desktop apps are 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 updates 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 sorts of security risks or data breaches.
You need to integrate the right security tools and meet the governance guidelines. The 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 the equal or 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 right app development company
While choosing an 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 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 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.
Cost of Enterprise App 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 to develop an enterprise mobile application. It 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 app development company, etc.
Moreover, the enterprise apps are 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 app development company and share your requirements.
Hope this guide to enterprise mobile application development sorts out all your questions and doubts related to developing a business app. Undoubtedly, there are numerous benefits of having an enterprise app, but it is crucial to know the important factors to consider, create the right development strategy, and choose a reliable and expert app development company.
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