Mobile apps are everywhere — and with good reason. These anytime, anywhere applications make it possible for companies to better connect with customers, improve in-house operations, and ensure they keep pace with evolving user expectations.
According to recent data, 48% of small businesses have developed and deployed mobile apps to connect with customers, up from 16% in 2021. However, this growth is a double-edged digital sword: As the application market becomes increasingly crowded, companies must find a way to stand out from the crowd.
Form and function come first. Organizations need apps that are well-built and deliver on operational expectations. With these foundations in place, data integration offers a pathway to improved app performance. Here’s a look at how data integration works — and what it offers to organizations.
What Is Data Integration?
Data integration is the process of combining information from multiple datasets into a single, unified source.
What does this look like in practice? Consider an employee-facing mobile application that ingests data from internal human resources (HR) and accounts payable (AP) datasets, along with information from cloud services such as AWS and Azure. While each of these datasets offers value on its own, redundant or conflicting information can cause issues with processing and performance.
The best-case scenario is that apps don’t perform to their potential. Worst case? App data outputs are inaccurate, forcing companies to repair or replace current versions.
Data integration looks to combine disparate data sources before they reach user-facing applications, in turn creating a single, unified view.
Four Benefits of Data Integration
Data integration offers key benefits for businesses, including:
- Reduced error rates
Integrating multiple data sources before they’re delivered to mobile apps makes it possible to pinpoint and eliminate potential errors. For example, if four of five sources report a similar value and the fifth is an outlier, integration can help catch this disconnect before data is pushed to apps.
- Increased performance
Mobile devices have limited processing and storage capacity compared to their desktop and laptop counterparts. As a result, the more streamlined the application design the better the performance across multiple device types. Data integration can help boost overall app performance by identifying and removing redundant datasets.
- Improved operability
With hybrid and remote work here to stay, companies must account for situations where users are not in the office or at home. They might be on the road, in an airport or in any other location that lacks a stable Internet connection. To ensure sustained productivity, businesses need apps that can operate under any conditions.
Data integration underpins this process by allowing apps to store local copies of critical data and update this data when connections are re-established, in turn empowering anytime, anywhere operability.
- Enhanced analytics
Finally, data integration helps drive improved analytics. By combining data from multiple sources, companies can be better equipped to identify and explore data connections and discover trends that inform day-to-day decision-making.
Bottom line? Better mobile app development drives better business outcomes. Improve operations and reduce potential errors with data integration.