Apps Are Products Not Projects

One of the biggest mistakes of any enterprise app development is the mind-set that it’s simply a project and that when it’s built and released, it doesn’t need to be managed anymore. The truth is, that there are two stages when an app needs to be managed; during app creation and after launch. Both are just as important as each other, and both will need dedicated resource from your team.

During app creation, businesses often create a project team made up of a cross section of multiple departments, however there is rarely one person who takes the lead. Having no dedicated project lead who takes sole responsibility during the project can lead to delays in decisions, confusion between individual roles and fragmented communication with the development agency.

This is when businesses should consider appointing an internal project manager that can take responsibility of the app and oversee the entire project. They should manage the liaison with the development agency, designate tasks to the relevant project team member and take ownership of the administrative tasks. They should also be responsible for driving the business goals throughout, keeping a strong project focus. Having a project manager on both the agency and client side streamlines the entire process, reducing iteration costs, speeds up sign-off and ensures continual communication.

Once the project has been completed and the app is up and running there is more on-going management of the app. This is where a product owner comes into play.

Apps are products, not projects, and so have a lifecycle and continuous management.

app-lifecycle

Any successful app is consistently being updated and enhanced to improve its offering, following a continuous lifecycle. A product owner is someone who can take responsibility for this ongoing progress of the app, and ensure it’s returning on your initial investment.

This can be the same person who managed the project or a different member of staff entirely. Someone needs to cover; content management, general housekeeping, user analysis and updates. Without a sole owner, the apps success is compromised. In order to ensure the app remains an essential tool for employees and keeps them engaged, the app needs to be managed, monitored and enhanced like any product.

A product owner is also be responsible for understanding the long term vision and monitoring the success of the app. As a business you need to see the return on investment from your app, and your product owner will be able to measure it’s success against your initial KPI’s and business goals. They will also be able to suggest changes to improve the return and build a product road map, prioritising feature changes and updates.

Having the overarching knowledge of the app itself, how it’s performing and its future goals will allow your product owner to make changes that deliver the most value to your business.

Want to know more?

In addition to making sure your app is kept up to date and is being used, there are a few other key success factors for an enterprise app. We’ve compiled a list of the 8 key things you need to know to build a successful enterprise app, including cost, scalability, management, integration and security. Download our white paper to see how you can achieve success.

enterprise-mobile-hands-download-banner