– Key considerations when choosing a provider –
The mobile app market continues to boom with App Annie’s latest report, State of Mobile in 2022[i] revealing that more time than ever before is spent in mobile apps, reaching 4.8 hours per day in the top mobile-first markets. Bob Markowitz, sales manager at BlueFinity International, says mobile apps can propel future business growth and companies that don’t already have them could be missing a huge opportunity to reach new customers and retain existing ones.
Markowitz says, “Developing apps is no longer a nice to have, as companies need to keep up with competitors and give customers what they want. One of easiest and quickest ways is using low-code/no-code development platforms and current and future app creation is and will be driven by these platforms. Organisations moving forward with low-code development are recognise the benefits are substantial, from increased agility to lower development costs, reduced time to market and increased sales. The stumbling block is often how to choose a low-code/no-code development platform especially for firms that don’t have big tech departments or understand technology in-depth.
“Usually when companies seek a new software application, they create a request for proposal or quote, however, in our experience this is rare when it comes to selecting a low-code/no-code platform provider. This shouldn’t be the case. For firms looking to join the low-code/no-code revolution, we recommend investigating what features and functions the vendor’s platform provides and filling in a ‘request for proposal’ template which can easily be found online. Simply choose the features/functions that are important for the organisation, add in an estimated budget and send it to a few providers.”
Markowitz says one of the most important aspects of this process is deciding which features/functions are important. To help, he has put together the following key points and questions for companies to consider:
- Does the platform allow for development via drag and drop, point and click and option select?
- Does it provide an app growth path – allow for starting with a small number of users and be able to grow to thousands without changes to the app?
- Can the company use existing in-house personnel and skills (citizen developers as well as IT professionals)?
- When required, can an app read and write to multiple databases?
- Will an app take into account the “culture” of the mobile and desktop devices? For example, an Android display is different than an iOS display is different from a Windows display. Will the development platform allow the developer to “overwrite” a device’s culture?
- Does the development platform provide APIs to the various popular packages such as Salesforce?
- Can the platform create a single UI design that works for all devices and will dynamically adapt based upon the device real estate and operating environment (Android, iOS, Linux, Windows)?
- Will the platform allow develop once, deploy everywhere for mobile, web, and desktop apps that will run on all platforms and devices for all operating environments (Android, iOS, Windows, Unix…), or do you have to create an app for desktop that is different than for mobile, etc.?
- Will the created app support ALM (Application Lifecycle Management) and Mobile Process Lifetime Management (PLM)?
- Since everything relates to data, will the LCDP provide for the:
- Mapping, entity, and classification modelling for legacy databases
- Immediate data synchronization between devices
- Offline data support when out of network contact and resynchronization with a central data store and other remote devices when reconnected to WIFI/4G/5G?
- Can the developer choose deployment on cloud or in-house or both or is the developer locked into the vendor’s cloud?
- Can the developer design once and deploy as native, hybrid, and/or web apps?
- Will the platform allow for cooperative team development?
- Is the app source code available to the developer?
- How easy is it to include chatbots, signature panels, etc.?
- Can a developer enhance, maintain and add custom content without having to reapply to each operating environment each time?
- What are the costs (if any) for training and support?
Markowitz adds, “Going through this list, deciding what’s important and adding these into the request form can enable companies to make an accurate comparison between providers and ensure they choose a platform fit for their needs. Without having this clear outline of what they want, they could end up making a costly mistake or launching an app which doesn’t meet their users’ expectations.”
BlueFinity’s low code platform, Evoke gives companies of all sizes and industry sectors, the ability to create sophisticated apps for their employees, partners, and customers. Its point and click, drag and drop and option select development process is easy to navigate and is supported by an extensive array of functional routines and widgets, so anyone can use it.
The results are sophisticated, full function web and mobile apps that can be optimised for any device and operating system (phones, tablets, watches and televisions using IOS, Android and Windows as well as Windows, Linux and Apple desktops) and can be fully integrated with any type of database (SQL, Oracle, DB2, MultiValue etc).
For more information visit: www.bluefinity.com