Enterprise App Development 101
As a business grows, so too should their app development software, but not all applications are as scalable as we’d like. Enterprise app development helps increase productivity, integrate with other enterprise apps, and overall, works to meet a large company’s needs.
In this article, we’ll take a look at everything you need to know about enterprise app development so you can continue making the best choices for your business.
What Is Enterprise App Development?
Enterprise app development is the process of creating software specifically created for a business. There are plenty of tools out there for increasing productivity and making your business run smoother, but enterprise applications take things to the next level by providing you with a solution that is custom-built to your company’s needs.
These apps can be a single program or a suite of software, depending on your needs. They can be tailored for executives, employees, and even your company’s customers—depending on your goals.
The purpose of an enterprise application is to simplify your day-by-day work routines, freeing up time to work on new projects while also cutting costs. The right enterprise app will make your business more agile and efficient, providing your company with excellent ROI on several fronts.
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The Benefits Of Enterprise App Development
While it can be a daunting task at first, enterprise app development can be one of the best investments your company makes. Enterprise apps allow you to take the repetitive, complex, and time-consuming aspects of running a business and create a program specifically designed to tackle these challenges.
Not only are enterprise apps a great way to increase your company’s productivity, but they’re also quickly becoming the norm. In today’s digital age, most businesses – big and small – have some form of onine resources, whether that be a cloud database, company app, or enterprise program. Implementing specialized software into your company’s routine is one of the best ways to remain competitive in today’s world.
#1. Increase Productivity
The most obvious and direct benefit of creating custom software for your business is the immediate jump in productivity. As you start to think of the different ways you can introduce enterprise software into your business, you’ll quickly realize how many tasks there are on a day-to-day basis that could either be automated or supplemented with a company app.
Being able to take time-consuming or costly work and make it more efficient will free up your resources to work on more meaningful projects. Any tasks, ideas, or unfinished projects that have spent the past several months – maybe even years – sitting on the back burners can finally be realized with all of the now available resources at your disposal.
2. Utilize Big Data
Another area that businesses of all shapes and sizes are beginning to tap into is big data. Big data is the idea that broad and expansive sets of data – like how an Apple Watch collects data about several areas of the wearer’s health constantly throughout the day, every day – and using that data to make more informed decisions throughout a business.
Without an enterprise application, all of the data relating to clients, customers, sales, inventory, product satisfaction, and so on, are essentially lost. With an enterprise application, however, all of this information can be used to provide a more effective service/product and to work more efficiently.
3. Go Beyond the Office
With modern technology, it’s now possible to communicate and work on projects happening within the office while you’re at home or on the road. This has made remote work positions possible, as well as increased productivity for employees that travel frequently.
Developing an enterprise application provides a company with the tools to accomplish office work at home and on the road. This is especially useful with regards to field employees. Enterprise software can give employees the tools they need to be successful, regardless of whether they’re sitting behind a desk, catching a flight across the country, or working on-site.
4. Streamline Business
So many of the tasks we do at work on a routine basis are just downright clunky. They take up a lot of our time, they’re awkward and inefficient, and sometimes they’re just plain frustrating. When you create your own app for managing these tasks, however, they can become as quick, easy, and sleek as you need.
This can significantly cut back on costs over the long run while also making it easier to accomplish the same tasks as before. This is especially true if you plan on creating a customer-facing app, which can greatly increase a person’s experience with your business.
The Challenges Of Enterprise App Development
Even though enterprise app development is becoming more and more simplified and easy to use every year, it still has its fair share of challenges. Like any change to your business, knowing what exactly you’re getting yourself into will help you accomplish the task with the best results possible.
Your Business Needs Will Change
One of the major challenges of implementing an enterprise app into your business is that as your company changes and adapts, so must your company software. You may find that five to ten years after you’ve created an app, you no longer have a need for some of its functions, or you could end up needing it to do even more.
You may also find that as your company grows, the software will need to grow with it in order to remain effective. Creating an enterprise application is exciting, but it’s usually just the first step in the process.
Technology Will Change
Not only will your business’s needs change, but so will the technology itself! Anyone who’s had to work on a software project knows that even if your app’s functionality never changes, bugs and compatibility issues will still create the need for updates over the lifespan of an app.
An easy example of this is how certain apps on your phone eventually become unsupported after your phone updates enough times. The same happens with computers, albeit less often. You’ll also find that – without updates – your app will steadily become slower and more dated than its software contemporaries.
While they certainly won’t need to be updated as frequently as your typical application, enterprise software is a fluid and ongoing process, even after the initial production.
Enterprise Apps Need to Be Secure
Finally, when you create an enterprise app, you need to keep in mind that you are also creating an entry point into your company’s data. This is particularly important when dealing with software that stores information, whether locally or in a cloud.
Designing an app and designing the security of an app are two very different things that require very different skill sets. User access will need to be secure, encryptions and firewalls will need to be implemented, and security updates will likely need to occur on a regular basis.
Types Of Enterprise Apps
There are several types of enterprise apps, and oftentimes apps will fall into multiple categories or none at all. The examples listed below are certainly not an exhaustive list, but more so a starting point for thinking about what your own app may look like.
- Customer Relations
- Inventory Management
- Automated Processes
- Customer-facing apps
Customer relations apps are – as the name subtly implies – apps that keep track of your relationship with customers, clients, and consumers. What this looks like will depend on what kind of customers you have.
If your service is geared towards consumers at large, then your customer relations software will likely be focused on things like trends and opinions. If you have a more distinct pool of clients and customers, then your customer relations software will likely be used for things like storing information on these clients, gathering feedback, and building lasting relationships.
If you move a lot of product, then you may find inventory management software to be extremely valuable. These programs take the time-consuming task of tracking your inventory and digitize it as much as possible.
This has two important advantages. First, it provides you with easily digestible data and trends on where your inventory is going, making it easier to reduce waste. And second, it means that you are far less likely to encounter errors in keeping track of your inventory, making it a much smoother and more reliable process.
Automation is one of the best and oldest ways to improve the way your company runs. Not only that, but it’s also one of the simplest ways to implement enterprise programs into your business’s routines.
Automated processes do repetitive tasks that you would normally do by hand for you – and usually much, much faster. This saves a great deal of time and gives employees the opportunity to work on more meaningful tasks while the computer takes care of the menial grind.
Customer-facing apps are a little different, in that they’re intended to be used by your customers rather than your employees. That said, these can have an equally – if not more – important impact on your business’s effectiveness.
Customer-facing software typically refers to apps that customers can download (you likely have several apps on your phone for various businesses and services you use) as well as any kind of software a customer encounters, like a self-checkout kiosk, for example.
Enterprise app development can seem like an intimidating endeavor, especially if your company hasn’t created much else in the realm of software. However, creating your own app is easier now than it’s ever been before, and it’s one of the best ways to improve the way your business runs and to give your company an edge against the competition.
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