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Making Business More Efficient With Enterprise Mobile Application Development

by on June 22, 2022
Enterprise Mobile App Development

Mobile devices have had a big impact on how businesses work. Mobile enterprise apps let businesses use the devices people already have to be more efficient and productive.

Compared to traditional desktop applications, mobile enterprise apps have several advantages. They are more convenient to use since employees can access them anywhere, anytime. They are also more flexible and customizable, which allows businesses to tailor them to their specific needs.

Mobile enterprise app development differs from traditional app development in some important ways. For one, security is of paramount importance for enterprise apps since they often handle sensitive data. Developers must therefore pay special attention to security when developing enterprise apps.

There are also different user interface considerations since enterprise users typically expect a higher level of functionality and usability from enterprise apps.

By following best practices for mobile enterprise app development, businesses can create apps that are secure, user-friendly, and fit their specific needs. By doing so, you can reap the many benefits that enterprise mobile apps have to offer.

Let’s dive in.

Table of Contents

What is enterprise application development?

Enterprise application development (EAD) is the process of creating software applications that are designed to be used by a specific organization or enterprise. These applications are typically more complex and feature-rich than consumer apps, and they often need to integrate with other enterprise systems.

Enterprises need to continually evolve mobile app development to meet the ever-changing needs of their customers. This means the application building process must focus on scalability and speed.

In addition, large companies need to manage and improve internal and external operations to reduce operational costs and reduce operating expenses. App development operations must consistently be optimized as technology progresses.

Enterprise resource planning

How enterprise mobile application development is different?

Mobile application development in enterprise apps involves developing mobile applications for enterprise requirements. An enterprise app is intended for a user’s business and its main objective is streamlined operations.

The enterprise mobile app development process is different than developing a consumer-facing app, as enterprise apps have more stringent requirements.

Some of the key differences between enterprise and consumer app development include:

  • Security: Enterprise apps often handle sensitive data, so security is of paramount importance. Developers must pay special attention to security when developing enterprise apps.
  • User interface: Enterprise users typically expect a higher level of functionality and usability from enterprise apps.
  • Flexibility and customization: Enterprise apps need to be flexible and customizable to meet the specific needs of an organization.
  • Integration: Enterprise apps often need to integrate with other enterprise systems.
  • Scalability: Enterprises need to be able to scale their apps as their needs change.
  • App distribution: Enterprises need to be able to distribute their apps internally.

Let’s take a closer look at each of these items.

Security

As mentioned, security is of utmost importance when it comes to enterprise apps. This is because enterprise apps often handle sensitive data.

Developers must therefore pay special attention to security when developing enterprise apps. Some of the things they need to keep in mind include:

  • Using secure coding practices
  • Implementing security controls
  • Testing for vulnerabilities
  • Using a secure development lifecycle

User interface

Another key difference between enterprise and consumer app development is the user interface. Enterprise users typically expect a higher level of functionality and usability from enterprise apps.

This means that developers need to focus on creating a user-friendly interface that is easy to use for users in many different departments. They also need to make sure that the interface is customizable so that it can be adapted to the specific needs of an organization.

Flexibility and customization

As mentioned, enterprise apps need to be flexible and customizable to meet the specific needs of an organization. Flexibility is crucial as the app design and functionality must be able to evolve with the changes needs of the enterprise. Developers also need to create apps that can be easily configured and customized for each individual department.

Additionally, in many cases enterprise apps will need to be customizable for each individual user. Unlike consumer-facing apps that can be largely one-size-fits-all, enterprise users demand a high level of customization to ensure that the application is most relevant for their job requirements.

Integration

Another key difference between enterprise and consumer app development is integration. Enterprise apps often need to integrate with other enterprise systems. This means that developers need to have a good understanding of the different enterprise systems that their app will need to integrate with.

In many cases, enterprise apps will also need to be able to share data with other enterprise apps. This requires developers to have a good understanding of data sharing protocols.

Integration of new mobile applications into existing backend systems is an enormous challenge. Large companies often have outdated backend systems which reduces development speed and causes issues. Often it isn’t even possible to integrate mobile apps into this service.

Being able to overcome these issues is critical to enterprise app development. We discuss the challenges of transforming legacy data for mobile in this Backendless use case.

Scalability

Finally, enterprise apps need to be scalable. Enterprises need to be able to scale their apps as their needs change. This means that developers need to create apps that can be easily scaled up or down as needed.

App distribution

Mobile application release differs in nature from typical software distributions. Because of the potential need to work through app stores, an enterprise mobile app requires more legal work to develop and deliver mobile apps to enterprise users.

Best practices for enterprise mobile application development

Now that we’ve looked at some of the key differences between enterprise and consumer app development, let’s take a look at some best practices for enterprise mobile application development.

1. Develop with security in mind

As we’ve seen, security is of utmost importance when it comes to enterprise mobile apps. Developers need to keep security in mind throughout the entire development process.

2. Create a user-friendly interface

Enterprise users expect a higher level of functionality and usability from enterprise apps. This means that developers need to focus on creating a user-friendly interface that is easy to use for users in many different departments.

3. Make sure the app is flexible and customizable

Enterprise apps need to be flexible and customizable to meet the specific needs of an organization. This means that developers need to create apps that can be easily configured and customized for each individual department.

4. Build with integrations in mind from the onset

As we’ve seen, enterprise apps need to be able to integrate with other enterprise systems. This means that developers need to have a good understanding of the different enterprise systems that their app will need to integrate with from the beginning of the development process.

5. Ensure the app is scalable

Enterprises need to be able to scale their apps as their needs change. This means that developers need to create apps that can be easily scaled up or down as needed.

Ensuring scalability can mean building on scalable corporate infrastructure, or it can mean building on a cloud platform that offers flexible scaling.

6. Understand the app distribution process

Mobile application release differs in nature from typical software distributions. Because of the potential need to work through app stores, an enterprise mobile app requires more legal work to develop and deliver mobile apps to enterprise users.

Types of enterprise application software

There are three main types of enterprise mobile application software:

Custom built

Custom built enterprise software is created specifically for a company by that company or by a third-party development team. This type of software is usually the most expensive and time-consuming to develop, but it can be the best solution for a company with very specific needs.

Off-the-shelf

Off-the-shelf enterprise software is pre-developed software that can be purchased and then customized to meet the specific needs of a company. This type of software is usually less expensive and faster to implement than custom built software, but it may not meet all of the specific needs of a company.

Hybrid

Hybrid enterprise software is a combination of custom built and off-the-shelf software. This type of software is usually developed by combining existing software components that are then customized to meet the specific needs of a company. Hybrid software can be a good solution for companies that need a combination of custom and off-the-shelf functionality.

Selecting the right type of enterprise mobile application software is a critical decision for any company. The type of software that is best for a company will depend on the specific needs of that company.

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Web, native or hybrid mobile app?

When it comes to building a mobile app, there are three main approaches to app development: web, native and hybrid. Enterprise mobile apps are no different. The development approach selected will determine the frameworks available (i.e. code libraries, no-code/low-code platforms, etc.) and the development team skill requirements.

Web app

Web-based mobile apps are developed using web technologies such as HTML, CSS and JavaScript. They are typically accessed via a browser on a mobile device.

Native app

Native mobile apps are developed specifically for a particular mobile platform using the native programming language and SDK (software development kit) for that platform. The greatest drawback for native apps is that a separate app must typically be developed for each platform (iOS, Android, or any other mobile operating system).

Hybrid app

Hybrid mobile apps are developed using web technologies (HTML, CSS and JavaScript) but are then wrapped in a native container. This allows them to be deployed as if they were native apps. The advantage of hybrid apps is that they can be developed once and then deployed on multiple platforms.

The choice of development approach will have a significant impact on the cost and timeline for enterprise mobile app development.

Enterprise mobile app development stages

Enterprise Mobile App Development Process

The development of an enterprise mobile app can be broken down into the following stages:

  1. Discovery and planning
  2. Design and user experience
  3. Development
  4. Testing and quality assurance
  5. Deployment
  6. App store submission
  7. Maintenance

Stage 1: Discovery and planning

The first stage of enterprise mobile app development is discovery and planning. In this stage, the development team works with the client to understand the specific needs of the company and to plan the development of the app.

Stage 2: Design and user experience

In the second stage of development, the team focuses on designing the app and creating a great user experience. The goal in this stage is to create an app that is both easy to use and meets the specific needs of the client.

Stage 3: Development

In the third stage, the development team focuses on building the app and making sure it meets all the technical requirements. This stage also includes creating any necessary integrations with other enterprise systems.

Stage 4: Testing and quality assurance

After the app is developed, it needs to be thoroughly tested to ensure that it meets all the company’s requirements. This stage includes both functional testing and usability testing.

Stage 5: Deployment

Once the app is developed and tested, it needs to be deployed to the company’s employees. This stage includes setting up the necessary infrastructure and training employees on how to use the app.

Stage 6: App store submission

If the app is going to be distributed through an app store, it needs to be submitted to the store for approval. This stage includes submitting the app and working with the store to get it approved.

Stage 7: Maintenance

After the app is deployed, it needs to be maintained. This stage includes creating any necessary updates and security patches. It also includes monitoring the app for any issues and troubleshooting any problems that arise.

The development of an enterprise mobile app is a complex process that requires careful planning and execution. By breaking the development process down into stages, it is possible to create a timeline for the development of the app and to ensure that all the necessary steps are completed.

Demystify mobile application development with low-code

Low-code mobile development reduces complexity from standard development techniques by replacing complex code with graphical models. Using low-code and no-code technologies, businesses can develop web-responsive mobile apps with advanced native iOS and Android applications on a single platform.

Low-code helps companies provide native device features and rich user experience while utilizing the latest mobile technologies. Developers with no mobile experience can develop extraordinary mobile applications using a low-code platform like Backendless, and experienced developers can extend those applications by implementing custom code to maximize the openness and elasticity of the application.

Choosing an enterprise mobile app development platform

When choosing a platform for enterprise mobile app development, there are a number of factors that need to be considered. These include:

  1. The specific needs of the company
  2. The skills of the development team
  3. The budget
  4. The timeline
  5. The desired features of the app
  6. The need for integration with other enterprise systems
  7. The need for security and compliance
  8. The need for scalability
  9. The possibility of future expansion
  10. The support available from the platform provider

Each company is unique, and so there is no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to choosing a platform for enterprise mobile app development. However, by considering the needs of the company and the skills of the development team, it is possible to narrow down the options and choose a platform that is well suited to the company’s needs.

Popular enterprise mobile app development platforms

When it comes to enterprise mobile app development, there are a number of platforms to choose from. Some of the most popular platforms include:

Backendless logo

1. Backendless

Backendless is a low-code/no-code app development platform. Offers cloud hosting in the US and EU as well as on-premise hosting. Features visual frontend builder, Codeless logic for API services, push notifications, messaging, real-time database, and much more.

AWS Mobile logo

2. AWS Mobile

AWS Mobile provides a wide range of tools and services to help native iOS/Android, React Native, and JavaScript developers create, deploy, and manage their projects. With the speed and dependability of AWS infrastructure, you can quickly deliver secure apps that scale from prototype to millions of users.

Azure App Service logo

3. Azure App Service

Azure App Service removes the complexity of developing apps for multiple platforms and natively runs on iOS, Android, Windows, or Mac. You may store app data in the cloud or on-premises; authenticate consumers; send push notifications; or add your own back-end logic in C# or Node.js.

IBM Cloud logo

4. IBM Cloud

With IBM Cloud solutions, it is simple to connect your app to IBM Watson services. By relieving the burden of authentication and scaling concerns, developers can quickly link their apps with Watson services. Developers may keep track of who is using their product – and how – thanks to analytics. Users may interact with dynamic and segmented app functions and alerts.

Oracle Mobile Cloud Service logo

5. Oracle Mobile Cloud Service

Oracle Mobile Hub, part of Oracle Cloud, enables you to rapidly create, deploy, and maintain mobile apps that connect to Oracle ERP, HCM, CX, or any third-party system on-premise or in the cloud. With single button publishing, you can create web, mobile and progressive web apps (PWA) in minutes from your browser.

Salesforce App Cloud logo

6. Salesforce Platform

Salesforce Platform lets you build scalable apps with development tools feature code or no-code. Connect your processes, people, and systems to automate time-consuming activities and personalize the customer experience while maintaining a high level of trust, security, and governance.

SAP Cloud Platform Mobile Services logo

7. SAP Cloud Platform Mobile Services

SAP Cloud Platform Mobile Services enables you to build applications that connect business data to mobile devices for better workflow management and back-office integration. The platform enables a layer of middleware between heterogeneous back-end data sources like relational databases, files and enterprise applications, and the mobile devices that are required to read and write back-end data.

Xamarin logo

8. Xamarin

Xamarin is a free, cross-platform, open source app platform for building Android and iOS apps with .NET and C#. Xamarin apps are native applications, not hybrids or webviews. Your software will function as anticipated whether you’re developing a consistent user experience across platforms or creating a native user interface.

Each of these platforms has its own strengths and weaknesses, and so it is important to choose the platform that is best suited to the company’s needs.

Core features of an enterprise app

When it comes to enterprise mobile app development, there are a number of core features that need to be included in the app. These include:

1. User Authentication

User authentication is important for enterprise mobile apps, as it allows the app to be used only by authorized users.

2. Data Management

Data management is also important, as it allows the app to store and manage large amounts of data.

3. Push Notifications

Push notifications are important for keeping users up-to-date with new information and for sending alerts.

4. Security

Security is essential for enterprise mobile apps, as they often deal with sensitive data.

5. Integration with Enterprise Systems

Integration with enterprise systems is important for enterprise mobile apps, as it allows the app to connect to and use data from other enterprise systems.

6. Offline Support

Offline support is important for enterprise mobile apps, as it allows the app to be used even when there is no internet connection.

7. Scalability

Scalability is important for enterprise mobile apps, as they need to be able to cope with increasing amounts of data and users.

8. Support for Multiple Languages

Support for multiple languages can be important for enterprise mobile apps, as they often need to be able to reach a global audience.

9. Customization

Customization is important for enterprise mobile apps, as they often need to be tailored to the specific needs of the company.

10. Analytics

Analytics is important for enterprise mobile apps, as it allows the development team to track the usage of the app and identify areas for improvement.

Closing thoughts

Enterprise mobile app development is a complex process, but it is possible to create high-quality enterprise apps by following the best practices. By considering the needs of the company and the skills of the development team, it is possible to choose the right platform for enterprise mobile app development.

In addition, by including the core features that are important for enterprise mobile apps, it is possible to create an app that is both high-quality and user-friendly.

Enterprise Mobile App Development Company

Backendless Consulting provides app development services including enterprise mobile solutions. We can build any enterprise application to meet your business needs. No matter how complex your business processes, our product development team can help. Contact us today.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a Mobile Enterprise Application Platform (MEAP)?

A MEAP is a mobile enterprise application platform that helps businesses develop, deploy, and manage mobile applications.

What are the benefits of using a MEAP?

There are many benefits of using a MEAP, including:

– Increased efficiency and productivity

– Improved customer service

– Increased sales and revenue

– Reduced costs

What are the challenges of enterprise mobile app development?

The main challenge of enterprise mobile app development is integrating new mobile applications into existing backend systems. This can be a difficult and time-consuming process, as large companies often have outdated backend systems which can reduce development speed and cause issues.

Another challenge is scalability, as enterprises need to be able to scale their apps as their needs change. This means that developers need to create apps that can be easily scaled up or down as needed. Finally, security is a major concern for enterprises, as mobile apps often deal with sensitive data. Developers need to make sure that their apps are secure and compliant with all relevant regulations.

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