Businesses now find themselves in one of the most challenging periods of American history in generations. With the spread of a global pandemic, all American companies, big and small, find themselves coping with a new business reality. Viral infection has changed the way many businesses must operate. Still, fortunately, 21st-century digital technology has alternatives to traditional analog working methods.
Many businesses have already enjoyed the convenience of digital technologies like the low code development platform to enhance and improve operations. Now, with the current global crisis, digital technologies must step in not just to improve, but sometimes replace, traditional methods of work. Online infrastructure and mobile technologies can be the answers to these obstacles, but how? Enterprise mobile app development is one answer.
What Is Enterprise Mobile App Development?
Enterprise mobile app development is creating software aimed at the business community, but on portable computing devices, rather than standard office desktop computers. In terms of usage, there is a very different user experience between full-sized desktop computers and mobile devices. The desktop experience is more or less “standardized” with most users getting a full-sized keyboard, a mouse, and a large display for easy reading of the text and other graphics.
Mobile devices, on the other hand, are varied. Different phones and tablets come in different sizes. While some tablets may have options for keyboards, no portable device comes with a full-sized keyboard as standard. The same goes for the inclusion of a mouse, as most mobile devices rely on touch-sensitive screens for their interface.
For general consumer needs, mobile interfaces are sufficient for simple text entry, video/audio messaging, and consuming content like videos and music. Enterprise software, however, can be challenging to operate on these devices if they are not modified for the design philosophy of mobile computing systems. Basic spreadsheet operations, for example, can be challenging if ported directly over, still requiring a full-sized keyboard and mouse.
However, creating apps specifically to operate on mobile computing environments can require a lot of time and expertise. That is unless businesses use a low code development platform.
What Are Some Use Cases?
A low code development platform is a “design system,” often using a graphical user interface (GUI) for easier accessibility. This lets people without programming skills create apps without needing a high degree of programming language literacy to do so. For example, instead of having to code a complex sequence instructing an app on how to connect online and upload data that’s been entered, linking a few icons already automated with these tasks performs the same job. This is how the “low code development platform” got its name, as little technical coding skill is required. It can be used in scenarios like:
- Centralized tracking and approving of sales
- Improved mobile invoicing systems
- Custom, limited use of marketing & promotional apps
Who Needs It?
Today, more and more businesses are requiring employees to follow Work From Home (WFH) policies to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Any company that requires employees to continue work while not at the office can benefit from apps developed in a low code development platform. This is especially true for workers on the go, who may need to remain highly mobile as part of the job.
For example, an employee who needs to evaluate and approve internal documents does not have access to a work computer at home. Even with only a phone or a tablet, an enterprise app designed for internal usage lets this employee continue work, even without access to a secure computer.
What Are The Benefits?
The most significant benefit of using a low code development platform is the control it gives to businesses. Under normal circumstances, creating new, bespoke software for company use requires hiring a software development contractor if a business isn’t already in the software industry itself. With this solution, companies can give easy-to-use development tools directly to the most important people, the staff that needs the software, to let them tailor it precisely to what they need.
The significant other advantage is agility. Bespoke software created from the ground up needs bug checking, testing, and polishing to ensure that the software operated as intended. This takes a lot of careful time and evaluation, often involving a back-and-forth between the users and the development team as tweaks are made to accommodate requests. With an easy GUI, and wide internal distribution, software can be rapidly evaluated by the users, and the users themselves can make any changes they feel are required, and instantly see those changes implemented. The concept-to-test-to-prototype-to-launch stage is as fast as the people involved can keep up.
The 21st century was already about unshackling conventional work standards and making work more digital and more mobile. The COVID-19 crisis has sped up the timetable for how critical it is that businesses are not confined to a single office environment where everyone is vulnerable.
If you need enterprise mobile apps, and you want your teams to have design input on how those apps work, try using a low code development platform.