What do employees want in a mobile app? 

Writing for CIO Online, Sarah K. White discusses how companies can create apps that employees actually want to use. As she sees it, enterprise mobile apps should keep the user in mind through every stage of development—just like consumer apps. With that in mind, here are three big things employees want in a mobile app:

Employees want apps that work. 

Of all the potential problems you could have with a mobile app for your employees, this is the easiest to solve.

App47 gives you detailed monitoring capabilities, allowing you to see if an app is crashing frequently, which functions are used the most, and how many users come back to use the app again after using it for the first time. Reporting like this lets you keep a close eye on the most basic app necessity: it has to work.

Employees want apps that solve a problem, or make their lives easier.

Let’s face it: if your app doesn’t solve a problem or make your employees’ lives easier, good luck trying to get them to use it. Note, however, that there’s a difference between what you perceive as a problem, and what employees perceive as a problem. You must have a keen sense of the biggest challenges your employees face every day in order to build an app that helps them overcome those challenges, or at least makes them easier to tackle.

In her overview of what makes an app good, White mentions three key criteria: “The app should help alleviate part of the user’s daily tasks or make them easier, it should be simple to navigate and use, and it should help employees become more productive.” 

Employees want apps that are easy to use.

Just because you’re designing an enterprise mobile app doesn’t mean you can get away with a shoddy user experience or a poorly-designed app. Today’s employees are by and large also consumers of their own mobile apps, from Twitter to Facebook to Evernote. Think of today’s most popular apps and what you like about them. They wouldn’t be nearly as popular if they were difficult to use.

White agrees, stating that “well-designed apps can have a profound impact on how a business operates, especially for customer-facing departments. Developing an app that employees are happy to use can… make their jobs easier.”

These days, building an app that takes off within your enterprise isn’t as simple as throwing something together and hoping it sticks. Like the most successful consumer apps, enterprise mobile apps must be built with the end user in mind, and absolutely must be focused on creating the best experience possible.

The mobile app equation in the enterprise is a bit more complicated than just these three criteria, but in our experience, meeting these three needs will put you well on your way towards a successful enterprise mobile app.