Most often, enterprise mobile apps are developed as custom software projects. The reason being many business processes are so complex an off-the-shelf product can’t meet the company’s needs. First, customers are guided through an ideation workshop to define key business drivers and develop a feature roadmap for the app. An agile team then builds the app through several sprints, with the average project lasting 12 weeks. Benefits of custom development include the ability to transform your business processes by building an app that accommodates a specific set of use cases. These apps are great when the process is very specific to your industry, has numerous steps and wouldn’t fit well into a more generalized product.
At Propelics we recognize a trend in mobile outside of bespoke apps. Known as Enterprise Mobile Software as a Service, these pre-built apps cover common enterprise use cases and are built as licensed products that can be used by many companies.
Today, numerous enterprise processes and tasks must be completed manually in desktop systems or via paper. Shifting these processes to mobile yields immediate benefits.
Following are several benefits of Enterprise Mobile Software as a Service.
When designing mobile products, it’s important to keep the Enterprise in mind. Our extensive background with enterprise integrations allows us to provide the benefits of SAAS while still enabling the necessary connections to Enterprise systems. It’s the best of both worlds. Instead of an isolated cloud-powered SAAS app that requires re-entering user data (and other info), these products can still connect to your Enterprise. These connectors let you pull from user directories, calendars, lists of offices or equipment as well as from many other data sources.
Low Initial Investment / Subscription Model
Thanks to the low cost of entry, Mobile SAAS is a great way to get started with mobile for your Enterprise. Rather than paying for the development of a custom app, you simply pay for the setup of a few connectors and then sign up for a subscription. Payment for access can be spread out according to your company’s needs. This allows any company to get started right away and quickly realize the value of mobile with minimal risk. Further, cost can be concurrent with actual use of the service—rather than paying upfront for an app used in the future.
One of the key principles of a successful mobile strategy is rapid implementation. Such speed is expected in the consumer mobile space, and it remains the best way to bring value to an organization. Users expect apps quickly and subsequent updates frequently. Begin with a quick win and build on this momentum and excitement over time. With a mobile SAAS product the timeline to configure and launch shrinks from twelve weeks down to just a few.
Fully Managed Service
With custom app development the total cost of ownership is not limited to the app build itself. One has to consider app upgrades for feature enhancements and compatibility, testing on new devices, and OS releases and support. With a mobile SAAS product all of these services are included at one price, making it easy to budget for mobile and manage expenses.
Shared Product Updates and Continuous Improvement
The number one way to improve a product is through continuous user feedback. A mobile SAAS product benefits from enterprise customer feedback across many industries. Features you may never have thought of will rise to the top as feedback is gathered and prioritized.
As you can see, the SAAS benefits for Enterprise Mobile are many and a SAAS solution should always be considered as you devise a plan for your company’s mobile strategy. Propelics is preparing to launch several exciting new mobile SAAS frameworks for the Enterprise. I look forward to diving into their specific use cases and value across industries. Watch for them soon!
Mobile Strategist / Mobile Product Manager