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Why Digital Leaders Need to Embrace App Development


Author: Adrian Velez, HP Enterprise Group – Content Strategist


Modern CIOs need to accommodate employees who want to be free to bring their own devices. At the same time, these CIOs are in charge of systems that are under greater security threats than ever before.


How to reconcile the two? Many larger organizations have decided that by creating their own apps, they can appease BYOD employees with apps that can be accessed anywhere, anytime from any device.  At the same time, these apps are secure. “You can automate, for example, the application of your security policies then you take away risk for human errors,” said Jan De Clercq, Senior Architect with Hewlett-Packard. “Also the whole notion of letting applications express their security policy preferences in a central database and then use this database to automatically control and underline the underlying infrastructure resources is a good thing for security.”


Because homegrown apps are more secure and can help employees complete specific work-related tasks, it’s not unusual these days for larger companies to even have their own app stores, where employees can choose from an array of apps to suit their needs.


At the same time, the equally pressing desire to create apps for customers has catapulted app development to the forefront of CIO wish lists. According to a 2015 HP survey profiling industry leaders, 60% of IT departments said they were working on a mobile app for employees and 67% were creating one for customers.1


Unfortunately, many laggard IT departments are still taking too long to develop apps and to fix debilitating errors. Often the apps they create don’t get traction because they’re not user-friendly enough. That won’t cut it in an environment in which we all expect to have well-designed apps at our fingertips.


“IT has changed in the past five years with the advent of the smart phone and tablet which has completely revolutionized the expectations that we as end users have on our IT,” said Jordan Whitmarsh, worldwide mobility lead for Hewlett-Packard’s Technology Services Consulting, “and the old style of IT simply doesn’t have it.”


Whitmarsh advises IT departments to be “disruptive” and meet the expectations of employees and customers. These days, he notes, no one wants to wait months for an app to be developed or weeks for a crucial bug to be fixed. “You just go to the marketplace and you self-serve – that’s the new expectation for the delivery of IT services for the next generation workplace,” he says.


Both consumers and employees have high standards, though. Consumers who have been conditioned to expect user-friendly apps bristle at the often kludgy apps that their companies force them to use.


The way to ensure that apps will be used and even embraced is by rigorously testing the apps in real-world conditions. The new style of IT can choose to outsource such work via Testing as a Service (TaaS), that covers all aspects of lifecycle requirements.


Even management of apps can either be maintained in house with a dedicated dev ops team or offloaded to third parties, which can help manage, maintain, operate and enhance an app portfolio.


Taking advantage of such cloud-based services may go a long way towards breaking the common belief that homegrown apps for a corporate environment are expensive to build and maintain and often obsolete before they’re implemented.


IT can use its influence the business to meet its goals – introducing not just technology, but the processes and workflows that enable growth, improve profitability, increase agility, boost productivity, improve the customer experience, increase innovation and reduce risk. Read the Insights: 2015 Infrastructure Imperatives eBook to see how you can use digital technologies to increase agility and boost innovation.


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[1] HP Research, 2015 Report: Profiling Infrastructure Leaders, February 2015


Insights: 2015 Infrastructure Imperatives

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Hi Adrian, I agree fully with your views, thanks a lot for posting.