- Aligning application development with a product roadmap (overview of a product’s future course) is the best practice.
- After the initial launch, regular and tangible progress driven by your post-launch plan must deliver a measurable ROI and app adoption.
As technologies forming the basis of IT modernization are increasing, it is essential to note how crucial modern application development is. But many of them have no idea what it means. Modern application development has been a crucial concept in the current software design. It is an approach to innovative design, building, and management of applications. It increases the teams’ agility, reliability, scalability, and security.
Let’s check out some common risks and the solutions to maintain that.
Risks & Solutions
One of the first risks that happen at an early stage is that the app development starts without a plan. To create a successful application, you need more than a brilliant idea. Nothing will happen without a product strategy, no matter how well-defined the standards are.
Without preparation, you risk learning too late that your application isn’t suitable for the market. It might not be promoted to the appropriate users or may even have competitive weaknesses.
Aligning application development with a product roadmap (overview of a product’s future course) is the best practice. To ensure long-term success, you must establish and comprehend several variables for deployment and follow-up operations, including – Advocacy, Constraints, Dimension, Estimation, Ideation, Priorities, Publication, Sequencing, Synthesis, and Validation.
Develop a plan including all the elements your development team will require to build and launch a successful application. Future improvements and upkeep should also be part of your plan. Cost savings, educated and coordinated cross-functional teams, and prompt response to your application are advantages of integrating your application development with a product road map.
Another risk in modern app development is lack of focus and not knowing the exact requirements. Apart from your app idea, you must know many things like what users want, your organization’s business goals, the problems to be solved by this app, the expected results, and the benefits for your organization.
Due to a lack of knowledge, you might increase the time and cost of development by building unneeded and extraneous features.
Focusing on a Minimum Viable Product (MVP) is the best practice to tackle this risk. Before starting software development, identify the primary purpose and 3-5 other uses of your app. Determine your target audience, including their demographics and preferred operating system.
Compare your app with similar apps in the market and decide how closely they align with your concept. Once developed, you can hand over your MVP to end users to gain feedback about your idea and the features provided in your app.
Based on this feedback, you can make further efforts to finalize your app. Thus, an MVP reduces several risks and helps you place a workable version in the field while you work on the entire product.
Having unrealistic app development goals is another risk. Without realistic and measurable goals, you won’t recognize success while developing custom applications.
No app can be perfect for generating tons of revenue and providing optimum value. If you work with unrealistic expectations, you and your team will fail.
Set realistic and attainable app development goals. Once you know your users’ wants from your MVP, you can set reasonable goals for the app’s development. You better understand the goals and time required to develop your MVP’s next version.
The technical specifications are important, and each developer should understand the requirements. You can determine the exemplary architecture for your app accordingly.
Ensure that your goals are SMART – Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-based. Another approach to follow is ACES —
• Achieve what you want to do
• Conserve what you must keep doing
• Eliminate everything that blocks achieving the goal
• Steer clear of what’s unneeded
Set achievable and realistic goals to have a focused definition for success.
Lacking consistent and clear communication is another risk. You can’t assume that the app will be developed as expected by just delivering the specifications to the developers.
Without consistent and ongoing communication, the development team’s assumptions may not match yours. Product performance can differ with the interpretation. Then, the resources will be wasted, and you need to correct the problem.
Practice holding frequent, formal check-ins and regular meetings. You can create clear communication channels and develop habits of communicating progress, problems, and issue resolution as a solution to miscommunication. Two weeks is the minimum time that you should allow to pass without at least one touchpoint.
Following are some excellent tips for any manager and group –
• Micromanagement will not help; compliance will take too much time.
• Take care of workers and maintain communication to nurture relationships with them.
• Emphasize transparency with outsourced partners.
• Don’t limit the relationship as it leads to missing information that harms performance. Don’t miss the innovation and relationship-building opportunities.
• Making assumptions in communication leads to mistakes and inefficiencies.
You must pay equal attention to communication with external vendors and your internal teams.
Arbitrary platform selection is another risk as some organizations prefer the platform they regularly use, whereas others opt for the one suggested by the developer.
Every platform provides some benefits while having some drawbacks. You can decide between a native, cross-platform, or responsive app by considering integration requirements, user group management needs, and security.
The best practice is to include platform choice during planning. You can ask your development team for their suggestions. Search for one that gives the required technical advantages while having acceptable limitations.
Some considerations can be – the ability to run application security testing, after-launch updates, cost of development, required features for mobile app and user experience, platform feature support, security risks, expectations of users like speed, and reviews.
You can choose single platform development if your project is challenging and needs a custom solution. It is a better option for delivering the best user experience and stylish look. On the other hand, choose cross-platform development if the cost is an important consideration and no elegant user interface is required. Use this while developing a promotional project which is straightforward.
The next risk in this list is the lack of post-launch planning for ROI. Your responsibility for the app doesn’t end with its development. So, early planning determines how you will achieve rapid and robust ROI with the app. Even if you think you have developed a brilliant application, it doesn’t mean users will find it helpful or use it optimally.
Launching your product is not an ending but a beginning. You must look at the app as a holistic experience. Don’t assume that there will be only new features and a few bug fixes in the future.
To tackle this risk, you must have a robust post-launch product plan. Considering post-launch sustainability and ROI during early product planning is a better idea. You must consider the supporting workflows necessary for a successful product in your post-launch plan.
Every department of your organization plays a role in post-launch, such as sales, marketing, customer support and service, and other operational areas. You can also address other areas in your plans, such as app monetization and marketing automation.
All these departments should be prepared for support and minimize post-launch risks when you drive towards launch. After the initial launch, regular and tangible progress driven by your post-launch plan must deliver a measurable ROI and app adoption.
The last risk is inadequate resources. It is said that a product can meet two of the three goals that are – good, fast, and cheap. You must decide which of those goals aligns with your business goals.
A small prototype can be cheap but good, where you can invest more after receiving feedback. You can be affordable and fast in achieving finances while presenting to investors.
Staff augmentation and outsourcing are the best practices to avoid the risk of inadequate resources. These are the cost-effective ways to ensure you have all the necessary resources to produce a successful app. While selecting a development team to hire, bring your due diligence and use all the above practices to keep the ball rolling.
When you bring in outside talent to your in-house team, it can bring expertise in key technologies. Perhaps you have to boost project management. In such a case, you can bring in a management partner who takes care of your custom development project. Perform a detailed analysis of the developers required to execute your design when you start initial planning for app development. Proper staffing has a considerable impact on the overall timeline of your project.
There are multiple risks associated with modern app development. Since app development is complicated, there is no path to the perfect product plan. However, to discover and resolve issues and mitigate risk, you can carefully plan and test as soon as possible. You will have more leverage for completing a successful project the earlier you can identify a delay, issue, or opportunity.