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Four Steps Towards a Better Enterprise Mobile Development Strategy

Enterprise mobile strategy app development

There is no shortage of demand for mobile enterprise applications. Building better mobile apps that solve business needs, please customers, and help an enterprise run better require more than the best mobile application development tools and writing better code. Developing mobile apps also require organizations think differently than they have in the past about mobile development. Mobilizing enterprises also requires enterprises reorganize their IT, business, and development teams with an eye towards building mobile.

That's the main takeway from a recent Forrester report, "CIOs: Organize for Mobile Success." The report details four steps that companies can take to make sure that their enterprise mobile development strategy and apps succeeds. I'll summarize each of those step in the rest of this blog.

Make Mobile an Enterprise Enabler, Not a Self-Contained Organization

Typically, enterprises have a small group responsible for incubating mobile projects, and for designing and building the company's most important customer-facing application. There's some logic to that, but Forrester notes, "This model, however, doesn't scale. Companies need a comprehensive organization that's integrated with both tech management and business units to support enterprise-wide use of mobile."

Put Mobile Development Under the Head of Digital Business

Forrester says that developers and CIOs should not ultimately be responsible for overseeing a company's mobile development and strategy. That's because mobile must serve the needs of the business --- mobile apps must extend a company's reach, tie it more closely to customers, and ultimately help the bottom line. So Forrester says that a company's head of digital business, which often means the CMO or chief digital office, should be in charge of mobile. He or she needs to understand customer needs and bridge marketing, sales, product and customer support organizations.

Balance Enterprise Scale with Local Agility

Enterprises face a delicate balancing act when it comes to mobile: They should use the advantages that the scale of an enterprise offers them, but also allow enough flexibility in mobile design and development so that apps can be quickly developed and changed to meet changing customer needs. To do that, Forrester recommends a four-tiered approach. An enterprise steering committee should set overall mobile priorities. A mobile center of excellence should be in charge of overall mobile standards, while an infrastructure team should provide support. And small IDEA teams should be put in charge of individual projects.

Develop the Right Organizational Culture

Forrester says a culture needs to be developed that "enables accelerated velocity, rewards high quality, and tolerates failure by meeting it with a rapid response to correct mistakes."

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About Author

Dion McCormick
Dion McCormick

Dion McCormick, Lead Solutions Engineer at Alpha Software, is a recognized expert on agile application development. He helps enterprise development teams around the world transition from slow legacy approaches to high-performance mobile, web, and desktop development using the Alpha Anywhere platform.

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The Alpha platform is the only unified mobile and web app development and deployment environment with distinct “no-code” and “low-code” components. Using the Alpha TransForm no-code product, business users and developers can take full advantage of all the capabilities of the smartphone to turn any form into a mobile app in minutes, and power users can add advanced app functionality with Alpha TransForm's built-in programming language. IT developers can use the Alpha Anywhere low-code environment to develop complex web or mobile business apps from scratch, integrate data with existing systems of record and workflows (including data collected via Alpha TransForm), and add additional security or authentication requirements to protect corporate data.