Apps that are built for enterprises need to be built for a certain purpose. They should be meticulously planned and carefully decided, only then can a company build a top enterprise mobile app. There have been a lot of instances where businesses have achieved unimaginable success by developing an effective mobile app.
Weighing Skill and Cost
Firstly, you need to begin with verifying the credentials of the party that you are going to outsource your app. Who were their clients? What apps have they worked on prior? Try and download these apps to understand the look and feel of what the outsourcing developers are capable of.
Coming to the cost aspect, remember that if the developer firm or contractor gives you an exact price tag in five minutes after you’ve described your app to them, there are setting you up to fail. To truly calculate the cost, the developer needs to calculate the functional and non-functional elements and needs several other details. So if he just gives you the cost in a few minutes, it’s definitely a concern.
Functional and Non-Functional Requirements
Document your functional and non-functional needs – don’t make the list too short or too long. Also, don’t try to move too fast and skip the essential details.
- List down the core features
- List the differentiating features
- Mention the functionality of the app
- Jot down the user experience from start to finish
- Ensure that your app is secure for the user, especially if you are developing an e-commerce app where monetary transactions take place.
- The performance of the app should be seamless. This is possible if you understand the usage and guess the amount of users that are going to be using the app. The key is finding the sweet spot where you are not over or under built.
- It’s important to understand the language your app is built on? In case of any discrepancies, can it be taken over by another developer? It’s good to know that in case if things go wrong with the current developer, it doesn’t make impossible to maintain your app.
Monitoring the Development of Your Project and Communicating your Requirements
The first thing before beginning the project is to prepare the project brief and ensure that everyone is on board. Keep a close eye on the documentation and app development process; don’t assume that people know what to do and what the next logical step might be. Guide them!
If in doubt, spell out the screen, feature, button or project element, clearly, in the scope of work. If you have outsourced your work to an efficient software agency, they will look for gaps in your brief and challenge any assumptions or loopholes that they discover.
Failure to Prototype
After the interface of the app has developed, it is only logical you test out the prototype. It is very important to test the prototype of the app, especially if you are a non-technical founder. Imagine waiting till the end to discover that your app hasn’t turned out the way you wanted it or more than 50% can’t log in to your app or ending up with a complicated and confusing user interface.
Also, the best way to get honest feedback about the app is to make other users test it and mess around with the features of the app.
There are two kinds of product testing approaches; the first one is the manual approach and the second one is the automatic approach.
Manual approach: In this approach, you will need to run through all the different user flows and possible scenes that the user might face while operating your app. If your app uses location services, ensure that the search is based on that particular geographical location. For example, if you are in New York and you get a list of restaurants in China, then your app isn’t meeting your user’s needs.
Automated approach: It’s not always easy to do a manual testing, especially when you have a big app with numerous possibilities. In this case, you can use the automated approach. It runs through basic screen functionality, crash reporting and even how the app would work on different smartphones or iPhones. Automated testing comes at an additional cost, so ensure that the same is discussed with the outsourced agency.
Lack of Code Reviews
As development progresses, it is important to perform consistent code reviews. This is equivalent to being a spellchecker for your code. This applies for both software; Android and iOS development.
Manual codes: While updating manual codes, one must check for syntax, standardization, structure and other vital details. This review should be ideally done by a senior developer, technical architect or team lead.
Static codes: Static codes can be reviewed by several open source tools that run automated reviews and flag security problems. If you are unable to run the reviews, your app developer can run it for you.
Hence, it is important for the outsourcing party to be open to communication and being transparent about the progress and updates on the app. These tests should be run periodically and the results should be shared with you.
Poor Marketing and Ignoring Room for Improvement
You need to treat your Enterprise app like a commercial app. You will need to create interest in the employees about the app. To ensure that the employees use the app regularly, you will need to make them see the benefits and offerings of the app or provide them with a good incentive to log on to the app.
Once the app is rolled out in the Enterprise, you need to collect user feedback. Ignoring the feedback is only going to hamper the number of app users. Your app will be rendered useless in just a short period of time if there aren’t any active users.
If you take into considerations all the points mentioned here, you will steer clear of the mistakes or pitfalls. Remember to manage the project brief, test the prototype and carry out the testing and coding phases. Implement standard meeting with your outsourcing company. So, learn the technical jargon, roll up your sleeves and proceed to outsource your genius idea and turn it into an app.