Aug 04 2014

4 Ways to Determine Which Apps Are Right for Mobility

Several important characteristics distinguish mobile apps that deliver real value from those that get forgotten.

In addition to having the right policies in place, enterprises need the right portfolio of business applications to achieve the full benefits of mobility. A comprehensive mix of programs for staff members will help improve productivity, enhance customer service and reduce expenses.

But finding the right blend requires IT managers to first understand the unique requirements of individual users and then match specific apps for each use case. The evaluation process will also determine which applications will be available through independent software vendors and which ones must be developed in-house or with the help of outside programmers.

What distinguishes mobile apps that deliver real value from those that get forgotten on startup screens shortly after they’re downloaded? Experts point to the following important characteristics:

1. The value is quantifiable. IT or line-of-business managers should be able to document how the program increases efficiency, lowers costs, boosts sales or delivers other important benefits.

2. Successful mobile apps offer an easy-to-use interface. It shouldn’t require extensive training for users to be productive initially and then keep them highly engaged over time. Successful interfaces will show only the information that’s required at any given time by the user, so he or she is not overwhelmed with extraneous data that crowds the small screen of a mobile device.

3. The program should help users create, deliver or access essential data vital to their work. For example, outside sales reps might have the latest inventory information at their fingertips to help them close deals and meet delivery dates.

4. Mobile apps should connect with back-end business processes whenever that makes sense. This adds to productivity and efficiency. In addition to involving mobile users in the workflow, these integrations break down stand-alone services that impede collaboration and information sharing.

Want to learn more? Check out CDW’s white paper, “Microsoft: Planning for Mobile Success.”