Teamwork makes the Dream Work: Democratising mobile app development

Whether remotely ordering a Chinese takeaway or approving employee expenses, end-users are ultimately after one common thing, simplicity. This is one of the main success factors for a good mobile app, and as the convenience of easily using a mobile app anytime and anywhere continues to top the ‘must have’ list, simplicity should definitely not fall outside the app development equation.

[easy-tweet tweet=”convenience of easily using a #mobile #app anytime and anywhere continues to top the ‘must have’ list, simplicity should definitely not fall outside the app development equation.”]

With this in mind it just doesn’t make sense that so many businesses still get wrapped up in so much complexity, when instead the focus should be on turning simple ideas into working business apps. This is nothing that can’t be resolved with some good old company incentives and fun get-togethers; where most employees would be happy to brainstorm plenty of useful and feasible ideas for apps that make life at work easier and more efficient. Of course, there are many entrepreneurs and like-minded people that can figure out the ‘what?’, so what applications would make a difference and make life easier for everyone? The only thing getting in the way is the ‘how?’. How do we go about creating these genius mobile applications? Well, reassurance that these ideas can be achieved is the first step.

[easy-tweet tweet=”Developing a #mobile #app shouldn’t be any more difficult than creating a web app or even an engaging design mockup”]

We need to get rid of the idea that engaging and successful mobile apps can only be created by knowledgeable and experienced – or you may even dare to say ‘geeky’ – developers. Developing a mobile app shouldn’t be any more difficult than creating a web app or even an engaging design mockup. Planning the best way to take advantage of the native capabilities of different platforms does mean burning some additional brain cells, but luckily most of the code generation can be automated, or enabled with a touch of JavaScript.

So, caught up in excitement of the broader app development possibilities, you may be asking, “should every app idea be pursued?” no, not so fast. It’s important to judge an app beyond its initial idea, otherwise you’ll be judging a book by its cover, and we all know that this approach can lead to unexpected and undesirable consequences. The proof is in the pudding. Therefore being able to test the theory – even if incomplete – makes for an informed, easier and wiser judgement of whether there is good enough potential to move forward.

Before tackling all the details of the app to be developed, app creators need better ways of roughing out their ideas to generate interest in them. With the democratisation of mobile app development, visionaries who want to innovate within the company are able to sit down next to the CFO and showcase an app that was designed in an afternoon and made accessible from the app store; with the capability of running on an iPhone or Android device. Although, this would not yet be ready for production or linked to enterprise systems, it would be fleshed out enough to show the potential before an investment decision is made.

This same scenario is what Kony, had in mind when it released a free starter edition of the Kony Visualizer 7 mobile app design and development portfolio. By giving away this valuable solution, Kony is offering the ability to create and show a native working prototype to a boss or an investor without first needing to have the budget for an enterprise software license.

One of our customers, a European energy conglomerate whose name I’m not allowed to mention on this occasion, recently hosted a hackathon for more than 500 employees from across the company, including business units, HR, Learning, Marketing, etc. As a major energy provider in Europe, the head of IT called upon the support of people from across the business to come up with innovative ways to better perform various activities such as improving customer service to finding new ways to work more efficiently. The participants were put into over 100 cross-functional teams that used Kony Visualizer to develop mobile app designs and prototype apps. Company leaders were able to test the resulting app previews as working code, across multiple devices, before deciding which one to go for.

[easy-tweet tweet=”Mobile is a powerful innovation catalyst across every aspect of the enterprise ” hashtags=”app, business”]

Mobile is a powerful innovation catalyst across every aspect of the enterprise – from providing mobile apps for sales teams to promoting greater efficiency, enabling increased productivity, and equipping field teams with the ability to deliver faster responses and improved services to customers. By democratising the mobile app development process, companies can empower employees across the organisation, not just the IT department, to play a key role in innovating and transforming the business.

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