Mobile App Development 25 | 01 | 2024

How to Build an Effective Mobile Solution: Lessons Learned

Overseeing the operations of an NGO or nonprofit organization is a demanding and intricate responsibility due to the multitude of tasks they must do. Among the most typical daily occupations such organizations do are fundraisers, monitoring contributors and volunteers, alerting them of current activities and events, etc. Therefore, the implementation of a CRM in operations has become imperative. Creating such a solution is challenging but achievable by identifying the key concepts and difficulties.

We’re thrilled to share with you our extraordinary adventure in transforming an idea into a solution – CiviMobile. This mobile application revolutionizes the way users interact with the popular nonprofit management platform CiviCRM. Explore the challenges and solutions in developing CiviMobile, a mobile application transforming how NGOs interact with CiviCRM. Learn about the identified problems, technology choices, development tips, and overcoming challenges for an innovative user experience.

Strategic Technology Selection for the Mobile App

Every successful product begins by addressing specific challenges. Agiliway, already deeply involved in the CiviCRM community, recognized a significant issue – the platform’s limited flexibility and complex user interface on mobile devices. The goal was to create a mobile application with a set of user-friendly design, lightweight, and customizable mobile applications to enhance the CiviCRM user experience on smartphones. And to make CiviCRM accessible anytime and anywhere.

Choosing the best technology for a project is a bit like picking the right tool for a job. It depends on what the project needs and how much it can cost. And how quickly it needs to be done. There are many different technologies and it’s essential to make sure that you pick the right ones. Let’s review the most popular and the most used tools. Based on the identified characteristics of every instrument you can clearly define the best option for your custom solution according to your requirements.

Using these tips helps you effectively build your custom software and provide the best experience for the users.

  • Project Planning. To successfully develop the application, it’s important to have a solid plan, establish clear goals, and define the scope of the project.
  • Build the Right Team. Make sure you have a lead engineer who knows how to implement the project best. There should also be people who can do the basic work and interns who can learn and later take on more senior positions because the project can be long-lasting. For product development, designers who create a good look and feel are very important, as well as a project manager and testers.
  • Agile Methodology. Using Agile methodology for project management helped us to create a product in a short time. Projects use a cycle called “sprint”, which allows us to react flexibly to changes and adjust quickly.
  • Breaking Into Versions. Clear milestones and timelines are set up to monitor progress and ensure adherence to the intended trajectory. Those objectives helped to keep everyone on the same page.
  • Thinking About Users. It was critical to ensure that consumers enjoyed the app. Designers and developers collaborated to produce a design that was not only visually appealing but also simple to use. Checked in with users about new versions regularly, asking what they liked and what they wanted to see in the future release. The feedback helps in determining what is most essential to focus on next.

Navigating Challenges in Project Development

In every project, there are challenges that we face during development, and we will discover how to fix them to make mobile solutions work well.

The first challenge is cross-platform consistency, which requires a lot of careful work to make sure the app looks and works the same on both iPhone and Android. React Native makes this task much easier because it allows you to use one set of code for both types of phones. But even with it, testing and fixing issues will be difficult because there are many different phones and operating system versions.

The second is the lack of control over where CiviCRM is installed. If we use CiviCRM as a back end for other applications, then we cannot control where people install CiviCRM and extensions. You can add a checklist page to the extension to ensure everything works well. This checklist checks if all the important things like permissions and passwords are configured correctly. Usually, we get a lot of feedback, and bug reports because of some configurations.

The last challenge was user feedback because it’s a way to hear what users think. It can be difficult to use all the feedback to make it better since we need to balance the wishes of the users with our own goals for the app.

Summary

CiviCRM and CiviMobile are powerful services that can help nonprofits build effective mobile solutions. By following the tips and techniques outlined in this article, nonprofits can improve their operations, engage their constituents, and achieve their fundraising goals. Analyzing technologies like responsive websites, custom extensions, Ionic, Flutter, and React Native during the technology selection process, many factors must be considered. These factors include ease of setup, maintenance requirements, cost estimations, scalability, performance, user-friendliness, and the availability of alerts.

For effective development, Agiliway experts shared with you tips with an emphasis on user-centric design, version-based progress monitoring, Agile methodology adoption, project planning, and team composition. The challenges presented when developing the app using CiviCRM allow you to understand what obstacles you might face and prepare for them.

Agiliway stands out as one of the few software development businesses that have elevated the creation of a solution for NGOs to a higher standard. Reach out to us and we will assist you in developing an advanced mobile solution.

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