One of the most important decisions you can make while developing a mobile app must be decided before you even begin. There are many determining factors in this decision including project timeline, outsourcing the work or using internal talent to build the app, and more. Here are a few things to take into consideration as you decide which path you want take.
Mobile Development Methods
1. Developing In-House
Should you have a bunch of app developers in-house, or are looking to hire more app developers, developing your app in-house has quite a few benefits. You and your developers will be much more familiar with the project itself and will know your values, style, and offerings better than an outside vendor. This means the app will be developed how you want it versus what another company thinks you want it. You will be able to develop a unique-to-you custom system with an exact fit for your company.
Another benefit of this method is that your company will have full ownership and rights to the app, its code, and the features that make it tick. You will be able to quickly report any changes needed to your developers and they will be able to collaborate with multiple employees to create a resolution.
Unfortunately, in-house development does have its downsides. It will bring you a high overhead cost and can be very time-consuming for the team responsible. Maintenance costs will also rack up whenever it's time to upgrade or modify existing features.
Outsourcing can often be considered a “bad word” in business, but it shouldn’t be. Outsourcing simply means to have another business – whether just across the hall, down the street, on the other side of the U.S., or other side of the world – taking care of the needs of your business. Outsourcing can be very cost effective and reliable, as the one you are giving the job to is well-versed in the task you are providing to them.
Outsourcing the development of your app to an experienced vendor can be the most effective use of your time and money when it comes to creating an app. There are many different agencies that have the capability to develop a stellar app for your business from onshore, nearshore, offshore, or hybrid options. Each has its own benefits and unique offerings.
One thing that does surprise most is the price tag of developing an app by a professional. Experienced app developers have a wide range of costs associated with creating your app. Depending on the caliber of the business you have chosen to partner with and the type of app you need to develop, expectto pay up for quality and talent.
3. Using a “Template” or DIY App Service
Using a template for an app may be one of the cheapest ways to get your app completed, however, it comes at a cost of the quality or unique capabilities of the app. There is definitely a benefit of not needing to know any coding languages, but you may not be able to get the app to work exactly how you want due to limited features. Many of the app building websites out there boast that it’s free to develop your app, but you will be required to pay a monthly premium to keep it on app stores.
If your app is meant for retail, restaurants, or events, it may not be a bad idea to look into. However, if you require back-end integrations into your proprietary software with a need for real-time information to be processed, you will likely need a completely custom app designed for your business.
Which Mobile App Development Method To Choose
Time frame is one of the key parameter to consider in choosing enterprise mobile app development process. The time frame taken to develop a mobile app varies greatly depending on the requirements of the project and the workload of the individuals developing it. For example, if you are requiring your in-house developers to create a mobile app for you as well as trying to maintain other aspects of your IT department, it can take significantly longer than a dedicated employee responsible only to create the perfect app for your business.
A typical first blush of an app takes between three to six months to develop. This doesn’t mean that it will be completed in three months, or that revisions won’t extend it past six months, it is just a general guideline to keep in mind. Design changes, bugs in the code, or updates can alter the time it takes to make the app. If your app requires a lot of custom building it will take significantly longer than an app that will only need a few pages of static information and a calendar.
Remember to avoid rushing the app to production. If it needs to have the release date pushed back, push it back. There are hundreds, if not thousands, of mobile apps on the market today that were rushed to completion and are consequently broken or have a difficult to navigate User Interface (UI). You want to avoid having “that” app at all costs. It’ll be better in the long run.