The Case for Ready to Run Apps for Business

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            With the invention of the smartphone came the invention of a multitude of applications. Everything from healthcare, to day trading, to Flappy Bird is readily available at our fingertips to make our life easier, more productive, and more entertaining. For the up and coming business executives of today’s corporate environment, this means the ability to network, communicate, and actively be productive even if not in the office.

           In reviewing interviews and articles online, the most common theme that business executives looked for in an application is the ability to network.   LinkedIn is an application that is repeatedly mentioned by execs that are looking for new clients, new sales, or new vendors. It offers the ability to search within the local area as well as where there may be offices in different regions of the country or even internationally. Studies show that 20% of all time on a digital device is dedicated to social networking apps such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. The Facebook app by itself constitutes 18% of all digital time online on a mobile device. There are 19 million small businesses with a fan page on Facebook. Surely this creates an opportunity for potential clients, sales, and vendors. Most of the work in businesses, no matter the size, is still done on desktop platforms. However, as individual workers continue to travel and take more control of their contact information, schedules, and calendars, mobile apps are becoming increasingly more essential in the workforce.

           Another common theme among executives is the need to communicate efficiently. The smartphone is now able to organize contact information, calendars, plan events, and keep track of appointments. But it also affords us the ability to be available while not in the office if that situation should occur. Twitter is a popular app for providing real time information to a potentially large group of people. We now also have the ability to hold virtual meetings with people across the globe with various applications on our own phone. Having mobility apps allows us to not only communicate but to be available. Customer service has never been so important. These applications have leveled the playing field between the established corporation and the smaller business upstart. Is there room enough for everybody?

           The final theme mentioned with mobile applications is the ability to stay productive while traveling or just being stuck out of the office. More and more apps are becoming geared towards being able to actively edit and save information, especially with the invention of the cloud based computing apps. We can now create a document on an airplane and have it waiting on our desktop when we land. More and more companies are finding it more affordable to have specialized apps produced specifically to meet their individual needs. It was noted that one area small businesses are gaining on the corporations is acquiring new business overseas. Small businesses are now able to create applications in foreign languages and to specific cultures more quickly and efficiently allowing for more competitiveness with the larger corporations.

           There are thousands and thousands of business oriented applications available for very little cost. For the individual executive, it is important to find apps that they feel comfortable with and can use to organize and personalize to meet their own comfort and efficiency levels. However on a business level, the larger, more well-known apps are still the dominant force simply because more people have them. It does no good if you are the only one who uses the hot new virtual meeting app.

           The business environment has left the 9-5 world behind. We are now connected to our work nearly all day long. Business productivity and customer service is paramount for companies to survive and, perhaps unfortunately, the executive has to be front and center. Keeping track of the newest trends in business applications just might give you the edge you need.

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