An impressive 82% of healthcare organizations surveyed have a fully implemented mobile strategy, indicating a greater level of maturity compared to commercial enterprises, according to news from Red Hat, a provider of open source solutions.
A year ago, Red Hat’s enterprise mobility survey revealed this figure to be only 52% of respondents across commercial industries. In addition, nearly eight in 10 (78%) healthcare organizations surveyed are achieving positive ROI from mobile app investments. The research, commissioned with research firm Vanson Bourne, looks at how 200 IT decision makers from public healthcare, private healthcare, life sciences and pharmaceutical organizations in the U.S., France, Germany and the United Kingdom implement their mobile app development strategies and some of the challenges they face.
This success in ROI mirrors the expectation that the average number of healthcare apps developed by U.S. respondents over the next 12 months will grow 56% from nine to 14. European respondents developed an average of 13 apps and expect that number will grow by 31% to 17 apps in the next 12 months.
However, the expected increase in budgets may not support this level of growth. While respondents are looking on average to develop 36% more apps in the next 12 months, they are only planning to increase their budget 15.5% to support this – and that can include the need to maintain and update existing apps. This disparity between investment growth and desired app volumes may not be achieved by developing mobile apps as one-off projects. Rather a modern platform-based approach that supports agile development and modern API-based architecture can help increase developer efficiency, reduce development costs, and support the increasing demand for mobile apps.
Understanding the Healthcare Audience and Motivations
The healthcare industry as a whole can deploy mobile apps in an effort to both satisfy internal business and provider needs, as well as patient demands and competitive pressures. Mobile apps are currently provided primarily for doctors (59%), patients/members (55%), and technicians (44%) by U. S. respondents and are currently provided primarily for pharmaceutical research development staff (53%), followed by patients/members (46%) and doctors (43%) by European respondents.
The main drivers of mobile app development are:
- Business/internal demand for more productivity (63% U.S. respondents and 60% European respondents)
- Healthcare provider demand for better patient engagement and care (60% U.S. respondents and 57% European respondents)
- External/member/patient demand for mobile apps (56% U.S. respondents and 43% European respondents)
However, over the next 12 months, these drivers are expected to shift slightly for both the U.S. and European respondents. In the U.S., external/user/patient demand (60%) is expected to marginally outpace demand for internal efficiencies (59%) as a main driver for developing healthcare apps. In Europe, competitor pressure to have mobile solutions is expected to advance app development (45%), while external/user/patient demand (36%) becomes less of a factor.