Gauteng is fast emerging as a centre for enterprise app development. This is according to Cassie Lessing, Managing Director of the Strato IT Group, adding that the app economy is expected to create trillions of dollars of opportunities globally over the next few years; including in Africa, where a highly mobile market is poised to leapfrog directly into the era of apps.
“Many South African organisations have already started on their journey to become fully mobile, digital enterprises and the opportunities for app developers are endless,” notes Lessing. Already apps have been able to extend the rich communication potential of the internet beyond the traditional desktop computer and enable users to benefit from a myriad of information services practically anywhere and at any time. Now businesses in Gauteng and beyond stand to benefit from the proliferation of new and innovative enterprise apps.
Lessing believes that enterprise app capabilities will provide a broader audience with access to goods and services and, importantly, provide organisations and service providers with the means to reach their clients outside the constraints of traditional working hours, and reap the benefits inherent in mobile and cloud-based systems. “In this context, the potential for process improvements, ease and convenience of access, data reduction and improved customer service is limitless,” he explains.
In South Africa, the app economy is dynamic and evolving, and as the country’s economic powerhouse, developers in Gauteng are keen to maximise its innovative potential and benefits for all sectors of the economy and society. Apps are expected to continue to disrupt and simultaneously benefit various industries, including logistics, transportation, healthcare, and mining. “Economies rely on information to function effectively and the app economy represents a leap forward towards the goal of an informed and efficient knowledge-based society. Organisations that do not adopt and utilise the emerging technologies like mobility, digitisation and cloud will be disadvantaged and lose out to the early adopters,” he adds.
New enterprise apps enable significant efficiency gains by improving communication, access to information and improved services. And despite the vagaries of the economy Lessing says apps will be a major source of innovation, and an area of massive potential growth in South Africa. “Due to emerging technologies the market seems to be endless. For every new technology that emerges, there are thousands of problems it could solve. However, for enterprise app developers, finding the right niche in the market is key to success,” he says.
“An approach adopted by the Strato Group has been to pilot offerings with the co-operation of a prospective customer or audience drawn from the target market of choice. This approach not only serves to test and enhance your product but also provides valuable raw material for proof of concept (POC) and proof of value (POV) exercises.”
As Gauteng begins to take its place as a hub for enterprise app development, Lessing says that ultimately convenience is king, as is the perceived and real value attached to the app. “Shorten queues, save time, satisfy customers and you’re in business,” he concludes.