Author(s): Kurt Gerstner, Posted 07/4/12
The world of mobile devices is burgeoning and in its wake comes change. This is no longer a small wave or an alternative technology that will pass us by. This is a cultural revolution. Almost everybody has a mobile device and personal and professional boundaries have long since disappeared. Employees don’t want to be tied down to a desktop and key board anymore; they want to be computing with a piece of glass that fits into the palm of their hand. And when you see that picture you know that the demand for mobile apps is only just beginning. IT departments are going to be under tremendous pressure to modify and build apps that are more mobile adept.
How can organizations cope with this demand?
Building apps of the future, for a group of diverse users, requires a diverse team:
- Developers who live and breathe mobile, and have worked extensively with multiple mobile device types and platforms,
- Senior IT architects who are expert at integrating mobile applications with enterprise systems, in both traditional and cloud computing environments
- IT security and services specialists who can address all aspects of mobile application and device security and management, including role-based security, and
- Business and industry consultants with keen insight into critical processes and a full understanding of mobility-related policy and compliance concerns
An organization will also have to evaluate the tools that they use to develop mobile applications. With skilled use of native tools such as Apple Xcode, developers can build and release a prototype in just a few weeks time. Development time can be reduced drastically by using a ‘design room’ approach, where organizations discuss and agree upon the aesthetics of the proposed mobile application before a prototype is built. By doing so, issues around look-and-feel are immediately addressed eliminating copious amount of time spent on this later in the development cycle. Patterns can be another effective tool for app development. For example, workers in certain environments may still rely on a clipboard-based process to record data, entering that information into the supporting application. To streamline this process and eliminate errors that occur from manual data entry, developers can create a documented, reusable pattern that connects “clipboard” style work to data sources and then apply that to current and future mobile application development efforts.
Using a combination of all these tools and techniques organizations can quickly design and deploy business-critical mobile applications.
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