Alcove’s Approach To Mobile Applications
The phenomenal growth of mobile devices has opened up avenues for organizations to integrate them into the mainstream-computing environment. Today’s mobile applications deliver complex functionalities on platforms that have limited resources for computing.
Unlike the PC based environment, the mobile environment is constituted by a plethora of devices with diverse hardware and software configurations and communication intricacies. This diversity in mobile computing environments presents unique challenges in application development, quality assurance and deployment, requiring special skills and expertise.
Enterprise applications delivered on mobile devices are extending the workplace like never before. Many applications that were deployed as desktop applications are now being ported to mobile devices. These applications are empowering workforces across various functions, especially those in sales, supply chain, field support and the shop floor.
Business applications increase workforce productivity, increases speed of transactions, improves business processes, reduce costs and increases sales and revenues, therefore, forms part of successful companies Business and Technology strategic initiatives.
Highly competitive business environments, emerging technologies, multiplicity of devises, different mobile platforms demand specialised skills to develop & deploy complex and optimized mobile applications. Seamless Integration with different back-end applications is another key to success of mobile applications strategy.
Companies should also look at their existing infrastructure to choose a solution
that most easily fits in with their platforms, solutions and tools strategy. This will
minimize any additional investments in one-off technologies and also minimize
the need for enterprise staff to learn new technologies and tools.
Security and holistic approach
Companies must also focus on the overall security of the solution, as the need to safeguard corporate data assets and comply with existing and future regulations is of paramount concern, particularly in such highly regulated industries as financial services, healthcare and retail. Careful evaluation of the inherent security of any application platform or extension should be undertaken at an early stage of the design phase.
It is only through a holistic approach, taking into account, user needs, company infrastructure, security, and business needs that mobile solutions can be successfully deployed, providing maximum gain to the whole company and its workforce.
Defining mobile applications strategy
Despite a need to move towards mobile applications for the workforce, the majority of companies have not yet formulated a sound mobile strategy. Research indicates less than 35% have a mobile strategy in place. This lack of strategy often prevents companies from achieving maximum benefits in their deployments and further prevents them from formulating a sound strategy for future integration and deployments.
An enterprise should evaluate its existing assets. Assets such as existing devices, application platforms, network access, support infrastructure, security solutions, application development tools and databases should all be evaluated for the potential they provide for long-term strategic needs of corporate.
Implementation steps to success
It’s imperative that mobile applications destined for use within the organization are successfully deployed with least amount of corporate pain or critical business disruption. The solutions need to be robust, scalable and rolled out in a phased manner. Adequate support to end users, specific implementation skills, efficient methodologies, good internal processes would ensure successful deployment of mobile applications in the least amount of time, budget and least business disruption.
Design and Architecture
The proper design and architecture of an application is an obvious area where inexperienced teams fail. Designing for portability and scalability is an important factor. Mistakes that are made early on are often costly to fix at a later date, so spending a little extra time up front can save you considerable agony down the road.