Best practices in Enterprise Application Development
Businesses around the world have witnessed a remarkable transformation with the advent of technology and more importantly mobile apps into their business processes. The right kind of software, which can integrate the various business functions and provide for an effective flow of activities, is a pertinent decision to be made. That is why most enterprises curate software according to their needs and thus ensure the proper functioning of the same. Enterprise Application Development is one such solution.
An enterprise application is a software solution or mobile app which combines all or most of the relevant business processes at one place. While one may think that enterprise application development will be like just any other software development, it is not so. An enterprise application development involves several critical procedures that need to be deployed onto the cloud computing system and intranet networks while being made accessible to all employees at a different level of access and hierarchy. Creating and developing such enterprise applications means satisfying hundreds or thousands of separate requirements. These applications are installed across multiple platforms and operate simultaneously with many other applications. Enterprise application development also pertains to modifications to encode business policies, procedures, rules, and entities and are developed with a specific business requirement in mind.
Key trends in Enterprise Application Development
An enterprise application has takers across all the conceivable industrial domains. Hence, there is no one way to engage in enterprise application development. The Enterprise Application Development process has witnessed many changes over the years and has paved the way for multiple emerging trends in cloud computing and integration programs. Some of the key trends in the same category are
Usability (User Experience UX)
While UX is something which has to be taken care of in any kind of app development, yet it assumes a different meaning when it comes to enterprise application development. Given the complexity, most enterprise applications were developed to be simple or even as an exact replica of the solution being used on the system. However, things have changed now and a lot of enterprise application development effort goes towards understanding what is important and including only the most important features in the app.
Cloud computing is the umbrella that provides a vault for information processing and data mining. The development of enterprise applications requires the hosting and customization of the same, in the cloud computing interface. It is said to have increased accessibility and ease of operations for users of Enterprise Application Development. Hence, what were the servers kept in some remote location in the US or China have now been replaced by cloud-based solutions
Consumerization of IT
Monetization and imperatives of the business process are of utmost importance in today’s world. The customer is the king and services are curated according to the needs and preferences of the masses. Technology is also consumer-oriented. Consumerization of IT has impacted the Enterprise Application Development landscape to a scalable extent. Hence, the overall mobile app development cost has come down significantly and even small businesses can now afford a lot.
Best practice guide for enterprise application development
The most important consideration before the implementation of enterprise software applications is the cost-benefit analysis. Around 66% of enterprise resources planning implemented has experienced a cost overrun of considerable extent and thus drain out the business model. Needless to say that these considerations also trickle down to the enterprise application development process too. Given below are some of the best practices for Enterprise Application development that will facilitate the creation of a really useful and sellable app for the application development businesses.
There are two angles to the best practice guide, one is management angle and another is technology angle. We have divided it to make it more readable.
The management view of approaching EAD
Define your goal
The first pre-conditional for Enterprise Application Development is to have a clear conception of the objective of the object initiated. Clear definition and clarity of the goals of the project is a must before inception Questions like why do you want these enterprise software applications developed? What purpose, business or another objective will it serve? Modifications may be done in the future but the main goal as to why the application needs to be designed should remain unchanged. Also, the goal needs to be kept in sight while the development of the software. One may say that this is a very commonplace suggestion to give but we need to understand that with the kind of complexity that an Enterprise application development will have to handle, it is important that the main goal is set out clearly.
Build a good TEAM
It is a very important consideration for Enterprise application Development given how the process is way more complex than a typical mobile app development. Professionals who have prior experience in designing will be able to cater to the needs by tailoring the software according to your needs. Try to avoid falling into the trap of hiring a developer because he or she comes as an inexpensive resource. Though budget constraint will be there, it is not an excuse to scrape the bottom of the barrel. Hiring a resource just with the cost consideration in mind can result in the organisation bleeding out more money at later stages. Also, take a look at the portfolio of the developers to understand the general level of satisfaction of their clients and whom all have they worked with.
Efficiency over speed
It is very strictly recommended that for an enterprise application development, priority should be given to the effectiveness of the code rather than speed. Enterprise application development requires the codes to be correct and bug-free because it is literally the entire domain functionality resting on it. Plus, more enterprise mobile apps are linked in the back-end with the ERPs and hence any bug there will impact the ERP’s data too.
Most enterprises are guided by the principle that a fast code will save them a lot of time and thereby tend to be a better option for smooth functioning. But if the code is inherently wrong, that will not only slow down the software but may even make it unusable. Provide the time it takes, but making the stuff work correctly should be the priority.
Reasonable time of dispatch
Timelines need to be set for enterprise software development projects, which are reasonable and realistic. Of course, some projects take a lot of time and it is a matter of concern, but the longer the project gets stretched, the higher will be the waiting time, and thereby it will consume a higher amount of resources too. That does not necessarily translate to take the down-hill road and rush into the same. Watch out for industry standards and competitors averages and set a realistic timeline for your enterprise application development process.
Clarity of feature requirement
Obscurity and ambiguity regarding the requirements of features and functionalities will lead to inadvertent delays and unnecessary complexity of the software designing process. While it is still okay to keep updating features in a regular app but for an enterprise application development, feature addition will mean a whole lot of complexity and additional costs at a later stage. Hence, it is very important that a framework is clearly defined at the inception stage of the project, as to what features and software are required in the final mobile app.
The technology view of approaching EAD
Determining the coding language
Avoidance of redundant codes
It is a common practice to be ahead of the requirements of the project and write codes, that you will not use or need. The YAGNI principle comes especially handy when it comes to enterprise application development. YAGNI stands for You Ain’t Gonna Need It. The YAGNI principle closely follows the rule of clearing out an outline of the functionalities and features which are necessary to be incorporated in the software so that anything unnecessary can be avoided. Thus, if you go by this process, that thought of integrating Lotus Mail with your ERP app might sound useless.
Choosing the best development methodology
The ultimate goal of the Enterprise Application Development will be best known to the employees and owners of the organization. With the advent of the project, precedence should be set to the needs and requirements of the same. Hence, it is very important that the enterprise application developer gets in touch with the client and discusses everything in detail. No, a KAM isn’t going to be that important. It has to be a dedicated technical discussion to lay out the requirements and hence the methodology, the process and the costs thereof.
Testing of Software
A crucial step of the Enterprise Application Development just like any mobile app development is testing the app through the Entire Enterprise Software Development Life Cycle. Enterprise Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC) is simply a specific series of stages through which the software will go through during its development phase. While it is mostly used for ERP development, the same has now been extended to enterprise application development tools for obvious reasons. This process is usually carried out in a minimum of six different phases.
No project can be successful if those who are working on it, are not communicating with each other. Whether it is an in house app or is being outsourced from a developing company, it is very essential to provide necessary information to all the participants of the project to provide a clear idea of the updates of the project.
It should be a priority of the enterprise application development process, to ensure the security of the same. Auditing and Compliance standards should be maintained throughout the process. Integration of tracking issues with performances of other checks, need to be ensured, leaving no room for human error. Software like Build Master offers users approvals to document and notify users on teams when their approval is required to deploy builds into the testing environment. The last thing a company wants is their confidential information and data getting leaked in the wrong hands. So it should be ensured.
Providing for the right team
The success of an Enterprise application development largely depends on the resources and man-power available at the disposal of the developers. A good project manager will ensure that work is given to the correct people at the correct time and provide effective training for the implementation of the same. Plus, working on an enterprise application development can be really draining for the team. It is thus important that the supervisors remain concerned about not just the work efficiency but the psychological efficiencies of the team too.
Application-level logging is a must for any enterprise software product, various frameworks are built upon similar lines, which facilitate ease of tracking errors and debugging issues. These logs are available for monitoring with various tools that can provide various intricate insights to the people or users. A look at the overall journey of how the errors have been handled throughout the process can help with troubleshooting even when the app has been launched. Hence, always make sure that a dedicated log is maintained.
Consistency in the development of versions is essential for the development of enterprise applications. It is important to note that unlike any usual app, an enterprise app cannot go for a complete overhaul unless absolutely necessary. Thus it is important that the updates and development are clearly laid out in the initial roadmap itself to avoid any hassles later.
Enterprise Application Development has revolutionized the business landscape across the globe. It provides for an opportunity to achieve scalability and cost-efficiency while keeping in sync with the core values and objectives or the business houses. Enterprise softwares provides for improved management and data integration, to facilitate the flow of activities in the organization, without any breach of security and confidentiality. In today’s scenario, where automation has literally become the key to success, enterprise applications promote a fresh approach to integrate operations of diverse nature, on a single platform. Also, it doesn’t flinch in creating new opportunities and methodologies of work, which in turn ensure efficient productivity and efficiency in the organization.
Enterprise Application Development also paves the way for reduced operational costs and overheads and thus results in increased profitability. Control and better organisational governance of resources are also the benefits of the same. Customer satisfaction and service experience are also enhanced through the development of such an enterprise application. This consequently helps in image building and goodwill enhancement of the businesses.
We leave you with one caveat though! The gamut of Enterprise Applications is very diverse, and they serve purposes starting from reducing timelines to addressing modern web application requirements. So, choosing the right platform, which is relevant to the organizational policies and processes, stands imperative and requires thorough attention.