The Barriers to Bold Innovation


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Technology changes fast, but mobile apps change faster, making digital transformation not only challenging, but immediate. That’s why successful digital transformation today requires bold, next-level digital innovation.

While innovation is in the eye of the beholder, I tend to describe it as differentiated from what’s already available, either in the problem it solves or the way it solves it. Bold innovation is not only differentiated, but creates connections, experiences and business opportunities that mesh the real world, current and future products as well as our digital and mobile existence. Bold innovation requires the imagination and foresight to understand what advances our society might need in the future.

But this type of innovation is hard to achieve, primarily due to several key barriers that exist within the enterprise. The good news is that each of these can be eliminated, and once they are, you’ll be well on your way to tackling new challenges, thinking bigger and solving more problems.

Access to low-code or no-code mobile development platforms

The iPhone might be ten years old, yet mobile apps are still hard to build, and many organizations trying to enact a digital transformation of their mobile processes and workflow fail because they lack the requisite technical chops and experience, or otherwise have serious resource constraints. According to Gartner, because of these challenges, market demand for mobile app development services will grow at least five times faster than internal IT organizations’ capacity to deliver them. Fortunately, low-code and no-code mobile app development platforms have arisen to fit this very need.

Low-code platforms let companies focus less on the technical implementation and more on accomplishing their business objectives thanks to the fact that they eliminate much of the tedious, repetitive work common in development roles. Much like content management systems like WordPress and Drupal replaced the traditional methods of website design and development, low-code mobile development platforms are becoming more widely adopted, and the low-code market is growing rapidly. In fact, a recent report by MarketsandMarkets™ found the market size of low-code development platforms is expected to grow from $4.32B in 2017 to $27.23B by 2022. What’s contributing to this growth? Low-code platforms enable organizations to achieve new levels of creative mastery by enabling developers to think beyond mobile to what will lead to real business impact.

Ultimately, the organizations turning to low-code app development are more often seen as innovative, while those who are slower to adopt such platforms are getting left behind on the road to digital transformation.

Failure to understand user behavior

A disconnect often exists between the product features getting built and the features users actually need. Today’s employees and consumers expect apps that provide delightful experiences, perform well, solve problems and look beautiful, and while significant improvements have been made regarding user experience and engagement, the fact remains — nearly 1 in 4 mobile app users abandon an app after one use.

The reason? It often starts at the beginning of the mobile app development process, with developers and digital leaders not understanding user behavior and mobile design and development best practices, and therefore, not knowing which type of mobile app development method to use. You certainly don’t need to develop every mobile app natively. Rather, it’s about creating experiences that consumers will adopt. This is done by embracing tools beyond manual coding and hybrid development, such as visual development.

A focus on inside-out thinking versus outside-in

Inside-out thinking is all too common in the enterprise, placing the internal team at the center of its decision-making. While this type of thinking may help modernize a legacy process or system, it fails to take into account the customer experience. Often, any improvements made to internal efficiencies as a result of inside-out thinking also negatively impact the customer.

Therefore, when it comes to innovation and improving your organization’s mobile apps, take an outside-in approach. This not only places the customer at the center of your organization’s decision-making process, but it ensures the team considers external trends and customer need. The result leads to more personalized products, customer satisfaction and greater insight into the features and capabilities that will help make a mobile app successful.

It’s time to embrace bold innovation

Once each of the above barriers get tackled and eliminated, organizations can fully embrace bold innovation, or the idea that only by pushing the boundaries can an organization solve problems that are yet unimagined. These require process changes as well as cultural changes.

Organizations most primed for success are those that realize using the same outdated methods and tools will not get different or better results. These are enterprises that have shifted their perspective in the face of greatly increased demand and are most willing to be bold enough to prove others wrong. It’s time to get onboard or risk falling behind.

Ben Saren
Ben is CEO of Dropsource and a 20+ year high-tech veteran and entrepreneur from Boston, with entrepreneurial and senior executive experience from startups to large multinationals and several successful exits under his belt. Ben joined Dropsource in April 2016.


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