Businesses are arming employees with mobile tools at a rapid rate and have begun creating their own internal "app stores" to house them.
These internal app stores are defined as internal content management and delivery systems for apps for their own employees. The apps are mainly designed to allow secure access to company information or programs.
Research from Antenna Software, which helps businesses manage mobile apps, revealed that 60 percent of employers are currently working on a mobile app for employees, up from just 42 percent last year. In addition, nearly 40 percent of businesses have their own app stores for employees, a significant increase from 2012, when only 14 percent had app stores. App stores are considered to offer companies more control and security of their mobile apps.
The study found that improving current business processes is the top priority for companies adopting new mobile projects. Two thirds of the executives surveyed said that either all, or the majority, of their deployed and planned mobile projects address current business processes, rather than creating transformative or innovative initiatives.
"As mobile apps spread across the enterprise — to enable both employees and customers, alike — there appears to be a growing concern over the lack of control and management businesses seem to have with this mobile tsunami," said Jim Somers, chief marketing and strategy officer for Antenna. "While public app stores certainly serve a purpose for consumer apps, we're seeing a growing number of businesses deploying their own app stores as part of a broader need for cost, speed, security and reusability."
Overall, businesses are investing $510,000 on mobility projects in 2013, a 20 percent increase from a year ago.
The jump in spending is happening even as many companies report getting little to no reuse from previous mobility investments: Close to 20 percent of the businesses surveyed are rewriting or will have to rewrite between a quarter and half of the mobile apps they have already deployed. Meanwhile, 10 percent of organizations have already retired between 25 percent and 50 percent of their original apps.
The research shows that business and IT executives find the most frustrating aspects of mobile projects to be their cost, speed to market, security and ease of integration.
The study was based on surveys of 1,000 IT and business executives from the United States and United Kingdom.