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Businesses fail to test or maintain mobile applications

A survey from Accenture finds that despite enthusiasm for mobile applications among enterprises, senior decision makers are not properly prepared to implement and support them

Enterprise decision makers are failing to adequately prepare to successfully deploy and maintain mobile applications in the business, according to a report conducted by consultancy Accenture.

Accenture’s researchers quizzed 2,000 IT decision makers to produce its report, Growing the Digital Business: Spotlight on Mobile Apps.

Its data revealed that while 82% saw mobile applications as integral to their organisation, a mere 52% were employing a testing programme to include user feedback during the design and build stage of app development, and only 48% were conducting usage reporting or using any kind of analytics to understand pain points in live apps.

Abhijit Kabra, mobile application practice lead at Accenture Digital-Mobility, said it was a concern that businesses were not keeping a closer eye on their apps.

“To get the best results from apps, businesses must do rigorous testing before launch and robust app management once deployed. Not only does this help to provide the best possible user experience, but it will also help make sure security challenges are addressed as an ongoing priority,” said Kabra.

Proper management throughout the lifecycle of a mobile app will avoid impaired performance that can frustrate users and customers, or result in a security breach, said Accenture.

“We found too many companies are neglecting to continually improve their existing apps, meaning they risk wasting their investment,” said Kabra.

Security was identified as a particular point of concern by many, with 49% citing it as the greatest challenge faced when managing and developing apps. The other major challenges cited were performance issues(37%), such as crashing and bugs, although over half had implemented some kind of bug fixing or tracking system.

Accenture also found some disparity between the majority of decision makers who believed apps were integral to their organisation (82%), those who believed apps were the dominant user interface of the future (85%), those who believed apps were a portal to the digital business( 87%) and how many were actually deploying them.

It found under half of respondents were using apps to improve business efficiency, with 46% using productivity apps, 44% using apps as a channel for sales, customer services or information and 35% using mobile learning and collaboration apps.

“Apps are becoming critical to access business data for real-time decision making, whether it’s to manage industrial processes, employee collaboration, training programmes or the customer experience,” said Kabra.

“User experience and app performance is more important than ever. Our research shows business leaders clearly need to raise their game in app management to make sure they make the most of their investment.”

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