The app-happy world of phone software developers sometimes seems like a sort of overly optimistic Disneyland to those lucky people marketing business phone systems and their clients. These are the people that have to try to figure out whether these things work, and more importantly whether they can work well with their other business systems.
For developers, successful apps are DIY gold mines. For the slap-happy app users, however, most of whom have seen a few dud apps at least, “app fatigue” is a real issue. Let’s face it, those howls of resentment on the Apple and Android app reviews aren’t there for decorative purposes. Those reviews represent problems, including lousy How To options in terms of using the apps.
Business phones and apps- An edgy relationship
For businesses, particularly the modern businesses which are mobile device dependent, and move a lot of actual business data around on their phones, the problems are less academic. Some apps are real liabilities. They can’t, don’t or won’t work with business systems. If you’re trying to operate a fully integrated business phone system, complete with credit card transactions, file sharing, presentations and other odds and ends to trying to make a living, that’s just not good enough.
Modern telephone systems may be marvels of technology, but they’re not yet able to perform the clairvoyance, mind-reading or other services which are required to work with lousy apps. Few businesses are prepared to boldly go where no phone bill has gone before purely for the privilege of having to rely on apps of dubious value.
Selecting business phone apps you know will do the job properly
For business phone systems, the needs are somewhat less metaphysical.
These needs are:
• Ease of use
Selecting business phone apps has to work on these fundamental principles.
This is how you make sure you’re getting the apps you need:
• Proven functionality- The proof can be found in two forms- App specifications based on mainstream business platforms like MYOB and other reliable software, and test driving apps on your own system to prove they work properly and glitch-free.
• Clear integration capabilities- The truly professional app developers ensure that their apps can integrate with live business operations systems.
• Capacity- Phones don’t have unlimited capabilities. Apps have limits, too. It’s important to prove any app can manage all the jobs it’s supposed to do efficiently in real time operations. An app which cracks up in the middle of a business transaction is more than a nuisance- It’s a potential liability.
• Ease of use- Good apps are extremely easy to operate. Their operations are obvious, and there’s no extended learning curve for training staff in their use.
• Cost-effectiveness- Mobile phones cost money, even on good plans. Apps need to be efficient support functions, saving money by providing facilities for doing things better. An app which adds cost is a bad app by definition.
When looking for apps or checking them out, start by reading the reviews and comparing the apps to others of the same genre. This will give you a clear picture of options, quality, and pricing. The reviews will give you early warning of duds. The comparisons will cover the range of functions and features, eliminating the less competitive apps.
In so many words- Get very fussy. You’ll be glad you did.
– This is a guest post.