Top 7 Factors to Consider When Building a Mobile App for Enterprise

Enterprises must go through an extensive evaluation process before a mobile app development project begins.

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According to the 2023 Application Development Survey, nearly 30% of app development leaders reported that it takes their engineering teams four to six months to develop a new web or mobile app. More than 28% of leaders stated that it takes seven months to more than a year to develop a new app. These timeframes can be daunting for engineering teams and enterprises, and more importantly, they can become untenable over time.

The hard truth is that enterprise mobile app development, specifically, is much more complex than enterprise web development for a several reasons. Firstly, mobile apps require significantly more resources to develop due to the intricacies of operating systems like iOS and Android. Secondly, there are a greater number of hardware devices and specifications to design for. Consider the variety of screen sizes across iPhone models Apple currently supports.

These are just a few of the challenges a developer will have to solve for. The list goes on. With these complexities in mind, enterprises must make evaluation a critical priority before a mobile app development project begins.

The Key Considerations

When enterprises are planning new mobile app projects, seven distinct considerations should be addressed:

    1. The Necessity of a Mobile App: Based on the enterprise’s specific goals and the resources they have to dedicate to their mobile app project, it may be more convenient and cost-effective to simply update their current web app. There are approaches today, such as Progressive Web Apps, that prioritize maintaining web-centric functionality, but also extend the app so it is compatible with mobile platforms. If your app needs specific mobile functionality like geolocation capabilities or access to device-specific hardware, then a traditional mobile app might be the right choice. 
    2. The Need to Go Native or Hybrid: If an enterprise chooses to develop an app natively, a version will be built for iOS using Swift/Objective-C and for Android using Kotlin/Java. This approach entails maintaining two distinct sets of code, doubling the workload. The advantage of this approach lies in achieving optimal performance and immediate access to new features of the respective operating systems as they are introduced. For hybrid development, employing a “write once, run anywhere” strategy enables enterprises to use web development skills such as HTML5, CSS, etc., so that functionality can be repurposed for the mobile app. This method demands less knowledge and work from web development engineers.
    3. The Architecture and Design: Mobile apps can be in some ways viewed as scaled-down versions of web apps. They are constrained by limited visual real estate, processing speed, memory, storage, connectivity, and the user’s reliance on finger touch for navigation. These limitations must be considered by enterprise engineering teams from the onset as performance of the mobile app must be optimal in order for it to be successful and provide value.
    4. The Connectivity: Smartphones are mobile for a reason. They can be used anywhere, anytime. They also, in some cases, are used to house all of the data their users want to have at their fingertips. As such, users expect all of their mobile apps to work wherever, whenever despite connectivity as well as provide access to their data when they need it. This means that a significant amount of development effort must be dedicated to connectivity (and the user experience when connectivity is lost) and data management. 
    5. The External Dependencies: Every single mobile app that is in the market has dependencies. Whether those dependencies are related to iOS or Android, or another third-party service, enterprise engineering teams must consider how these dependencies might affect their app. For example, if a bug is found related to any aspect of a mobile device’s operating system, mobile app developers will often have to wait for those bugs to be addressed by Apple or Android before they can take definitive action.
    6. The QA and Rollout Processes: It has been established that mobile apps are far different from web apps, and this extends to quality assurance and rollout processes. For instance, mobile apps cannot just be “pushed live” like web apps and testing works differently on simulators compared to real devices. Thorough testing requires a mobile solution to undergo evaluation on a range of hardware devices from a variety of manufacturers. These devices will need to run different iterations of the iOS and Android operating systems, and each time there is a new release, the mobile apps need to be retested.
    7. The Five-Star Rating System: The goal of many enterprises launching a mobile app is to have users give it the highest possible rating it can have — five stars. In order to support high ratings, continuous improvement is required. That means enterprise engineering teams need to allocate a minimum of 20% of the time, expenses, and resources initially invested in the creation of the app each year toward updates, enhancements, and any other development-related challenges or opportunities that may arise.

The Considerate and Successful Path Forward

These factors underscore the intricacies of enterprise mobile application development. Enterprises and their engineering teams must make informed decisions before mobile apps are fully conceptualized so that they can not only be successful and garner high ratings, but they can use their resources wisely and efficiently.

Shiva Nathan

A seasoned technology executive and entrepreneur, Shiva Nathan draws upon his experience as a software innovator to empower businesses to reach their mobile-first digital goals. He currently serves as the Founder and CEO of Onymos, creator of the world’s first Features-as-a-Service platform. As the former head of Intuit’s Platform & Services organization, his organization defined the cloud-hosted services-based unified technology platform that Intuit’s line of products like TurboTax and Quickbooks leveraged. He has also held technical and leadership positions at Oracle and CA. He understands what it takes to build robust, powerful apps that serve a broad customer base—and how to avoid the roadblocks that can get in the way.


A seasoned technology executive and entrepreneur, Shiva Nathan draws upon his experience as a software innovator to empower businesses to reach their mobile-first digital goals. He currently serves as the Founder and CEO of Onymos, creator of the world’s first Features-as-a-Service platform. As the former head of Intuit’s Platform & Services organization, his organization defined the cloud-hosted services-based unified technology platform that Intuit’s line of products like TurboTax and Quickbooks leveraged. He has also held technical and leadership positions at Oracle and CA. He understands what it takes to build robust, powerful apps that serve a broad customer base—and how to avoid the roadblocks that can get in the way.