Following our CTO’s insightful exploration of why data restriction and control are so important to any mobile app development process in the enterprise, we’re continuing our series of conversations with our in-house team of mobile experts, this time looking to the future.
With the Salesforce World Tour just around the corner, there are a number of prominent questions which businesses of all shapes and sizes will be interested in answering right now, regarding their planned investments in mobile technology.
To explore these trends, I recently caught up with Alan Faubel, MobileCaddy’s Senior Product Manager. I asked Alan: What’s the one thing you expect to see having the biggest impact on the enterprise mobile app market in the coming year or so?
Alan said: “The big thing with enterprise apps, is that those investing don’t tend to care as much about the user experience. That’s because the difference between enterprise apps and commercial apps, is that people have to use their enterprise apps, they don’t have a choice.
The apps that are being given out to workers on mobile devices at the moment, the enterprise doesn’t care as much about the UX because they figure that people, for the most part, have got to use the apps to get their jobs done.
I think a turning point in the next 12 months will be that the technology will shift so it will be easier to create that commercial UX that we all expect from our customer apps within a business, and businesses will start to realise the value of doing that, and that value is getting the engagement.”
Alan continued, “For instance, say you’re building an app to help your sales people go out and sell products, if the UX is poor, then the sales person won’t rely on it so much, and the investment you’ve put in will be wasted. But if you give them the same quality UX as all the other apps they’re used to on their device, it will be a pleasure to use, and it will encourage them to use it more. That will then drive adoption, and that will drive increased revenue, or deliver whichever business driver you had for putting the app together in the first place.
“The only way to maximise the ROI with enterprise mobile apps is to build a fantastic UX.”Click to tweet
And I think the technology will start to allow this more easily. One of the things MobileCaddy does, for example, is to reduce the development effort in building a completely functional offline mobile app,” he explained. “So a business leader could either look at that and think, ‘we’ve reduced our cost there so the overall cost of the app is consequently reduced.’ Or, they could say, ‘the remaining budget available is not being spent on a developer building the app, so we can focus that budget on the UX and greatly increase our ROI,’ because that’s where people will want to engage with the app.
So all of the effort to identify the business process the app needs to address, and all the effort to identify the benefits of the app to the business, all that can start to be realised because people will be more engaged. Once businesses start to realise that the technology is affording them the ability to build those engaging applications, then realise the value that it gives them, that’s where we’ll see an increase in uptake.”
In terms of how this trend will impact the enterprise directly, Alan concluded, “Of course, that then reduces training costs, and other costs as well. So I think going forward that’s what will happen, because it’s becoming easier to build these apps. But I also hope that’s the way enterprises will start to think about it as well, because the only way to maximise the ROI with enterprise mobile apps is to build a fantastic user experience.”
Alan is Senior Product Manager at MobileCaddy. With over 20 years experience of IT technical consulting, Alan has worked with a broad range of technologies and industries around the world. His first foray into mobile computing was with the launch of an offline palmtop PC application, which was rolled out across the UK for ICI. Much more recently he has been responsible for delivering custom offline-first applications on the MobileCaddy platform.