Rethinking how mobile apps can help your business

Posted by Justin Hesser on February 21, 2012

By now, most businesses have at least heard about others mobilizing part of their operation with custom application development. It might be impractical for some organizations that only have a few employees to use iPads for inventory tracking, but many enterprises are taking advantage of mobile apps thanks to the availability of database software programs like FileMaker Go and the network of developers that use these products to make programs for task-specific solutions.

Maribel Lopez, founder of Lopez Research, wrote in an article for InformationWeek that businesses need to take a better approach when developing their own mobile apps.

"…Developing mobile apps isn't a strategy, and IT will be buried if it takes an 'app at a time' approach to the demand for mobility," she said. "A successful mobile strategy requires companies to evaluate what business processes are working, what needs to be changed, and how mobile can improve how the business runs and executes its strategy."

One of Lopez' suggestions was for business owners to consider mobilizing a process or part of a process, rather than recreating an application. With custom mobile apps, developers can combine the functions of multiple applications into one that can be accessed remotely.

Another of Lopez's tips was to consider if some apps would be more or less helpful when accessed through a mobile device. Luckily, programs like FileMaker Go have interfaces that are optimized to complement a FileMaker Pro-based data center, but still, there may be some tasks best carried out with a larger screen and a keyboard.

The best way to figure out how a custom application can help your business is to talk with FileMaker consultants who can help you brainstorm different solutions to your operations' problems. With their expert experience, they may have a better idea that may streamline your productivity and even provide a solid return on investment.