The key to any effective Business strategy is allowing your stakeholders to focus on their core responsibilities. By freeing your staff to prioritise their strengths, allowing your teams to be able to meet the goals and milestones that will carry the organisation forwards.
There is a question based on expertise. Your teams may be able to perform a range of duties that fall outside their specific responsibilities – but are they able to do them to the highest standard, or are they spending too much time and resources to achieve less-than-satisfactory results?
Managed services have always provided a solution to these challenges. First, your teams can offload secondary tasks to a trusted partner, freeing up their time and resources to focus on core responsibilities. Perhaps more importantly still, a specialist partner offers a degree of expertise that allows your business to receive a leading-edge service that your in-house resources cannot deliver.
Managed services are available for a broad range of functions, including those which are not immediately apparent. One such specialisation that is often overlooked but organisations should consider is Application Managed Services.
Why do we need Application Managed Services?
As outlined earlier, any task that draws attention and resources away from your core strategic goals is a candidate for outsourcing. Applications are vital to maintaining productivity but maintaining applications themselves is a secondary consideration – which is why it makes sense to partner with a specialist who can take care of the function for you.
Let’s take a look at how application managed services will help your business achieve more.
As your organisation grows, so does the application estate. Even with a robust application strategy, it is extremely common to have multiple application versions in production, along with various complex licensing agreements. This scenario is repeated for every app in circulation, leading to over, or under-provisioning of application licenses and the risks that entails. The same is also true of the bespoke applications used in-house, creating issues with compatibility, functionality, and productivity.
The “simple” solution is to conduct a thorough application audit to properly understand what is being used, where, by whom, and for what. The problem is that this process can be extremely complex and time-consuming, particularly as your business moves towards a continuous deployment mode of operation.
An application managed service can devote the resources you need to conduct a proper audit that gives you the insights you need. Equipped with a snapshot of usage, licensing, and apps, you can begin refining the application lifecycle, aligning it with the wider business strategy for greater effect.
Application lifecycle management
Developers are best at developing and testers at testing. In between the two you need to deal with the issue of packaging. Developers could package their code before sending it to the testers, but this takes them away from their core task of programming. Every time they package an app, a little of the development sprint time is lost, reducing the number of bugs that are fixed or features added with each iteration.
An application managed service provides the bridge between development and testing by performing the task of packaging. Better yet, an expert partner will be able to automate the packaging process to further streamline processes and shorten the time between coding and deployment. The automated packaging process can conduct many of the low-level testing functions too, allowing QA testers to focus on the big issues without having to worry about compatibility.
Ongoing oversight and assistance
Once an application managed services provider has assumed responsibility for your application estate, they will be able to carry out all the tasks your team cannot, or more accurately, should not. This means providing continuous oversight of your application estate to ensure compliance with your key metrics.
Once embedded, your partner can also help to contain application sprawl by providing ongoing application rationalisation. This will help to prevent compatibility issues and ensure your users are always equipped with the right software and that legacy versions are quickly identified and removed from the production environment.
More than simply deploying and removing apps, an application managed services partner will also help your business to better secure its estate. Because they are experts in the field of application management, they can provide best practice advice and guidance to ensure apps are properly secured and compliant in line with the rest of your IT security strategy.
Application managed services – helping your business achieve more
Using application managed services allows your business to increase the efficiency of development processes, reduce the cost of deploying and managing your apps and improve the overall security of your estate. All of this is done without taking time and resources away from your other line-of-business activities.
To learn more about application managed services and how Camwood can support your business strategy to help you to achieve your digital acceleration goals and more, please contact us today.