Successful App Development: A New KPI
Apps are everywhere; they’ve become a key for businesses in every sector to meet market demands. They’re the new channel to engage customers, spur revenue, and develop new products.
Consider the $683 billion restaurant industry. Just last week, Taco Bell and Outback Steakhouse announced new apps that have the potential to fundamentally reshape their businesses. Taco Bell president Brian Niccol told USA Today: “Technology has fundamentally changed the way people interact with brands … All can be done any time, any place on a smartphone.”
McDonalds, Starbucks, Pizza Hut, Papa John’s, and Domino’s are all following suit, in an attempt to serve millennial consumers who’d rather interact with these businesses via a smartphone than wait in line. Similar trends show up in other industries; retailers, financial services firms, and travel and hospitality companies are all attempting to digitally transform to meet the expectations of their mobile-minded customers.
Unfortunately, even as companies prioritize digital transformation and divert millions of dollars from competing budgets, success is far from guaranteed.
By surveying 800 IT decision makers at large companies in eight countries, the Apigee Institute discovered that part of the difficulty enterprises face in succeeding stems from the patterns and practices often used by IT leaders today.
Those leaders tend to rely on the practices that worked well to build and manage IT systems designed to maintain and secure information. Those practices, however, aren’t compatible with the new business imperatives that drive digital transformation investments, such as the development and deployment of apps. Our research revealed that IT departments that fail to modernize their approach faced real consequences in their ability to develop apps, and therefore to meet their customers’ expectations.
We found that more than one in four enterprises failed to meet their timeline when developing apps; nearly one in five failed to meet budget; and a similar proportion delivered fewer apps than planned. Of that same group of companies, another 5% failed entirely in their attempts to produce apps. Altogether, a full 45% of respondents failed to meet expectations on at least one of the five criteria.
In contrast, some companies seem to have mastered app development. Of the full sample, about 8% reported exceeding expectations on all five metrics for success building and deploying apps: quality and performance, budget, time to delivery, quantity of apps, and business impact.
The companies that reported exceeding expectations on all five metrics for app development success—enterprises that we refer to as “app masters”—are distinguished from others by one significant characteristic: their strikingly different description of their IT organization.
The results of that research, detailed in our report, “Lessons from the App Masters,” show that in order for IT to deliver on their new mandate, IT must adopt an “outside-in” framework that prioritizes the cloud for infrastructure and leverages external partners.
By operating in this manner, enterprises can create a functional two-speed IT unit, which can maintain the efficiency and reliability of systems of record while also meeting new business requirements with pace and agility.
Download the free report to see our recommendations for creating a winning two-speed IT department.
Photo: Christiano Betta/Flickr