The mobile revolution of the last 20 years has radically changed our everyday lives. That’s not just the way we communicate, but also the way we find information, purchase goods and services, entertain ourselves, and more. This has gone in tandem with great technological advances elsewhere. Now it’s never been easier to organize a business teleconference or simply catch up with friends and family, wherever they happen to be.

Recent years have seen mobile apps scale new heights of technological achievement. This plethora of new apps has changed the way we work, play, and chat. But that’s not all. It’s also changed people’s expectations – and it’s up to businesses to respond to that. Consumers expect apps tailored to suit the different aspects of their lives. This puts a great deal of pressure on businesses and other organizations to meet these higher and more demanding expectations.

That’s why so many are taking advantage of the opportunities offered by mobile DevOps. In a nutshell, the purpose of DevOps is to facilitate enhanced collaboration between project managers, mobile developers, and ordinary employees. This helps businesses to meet their goals more effectively, while also ensuring that users enjoy the best and most convenient experience possible. It also means that businesses don’t have to go through the hassle of using native apps to create new hybrid products, greatly simplifying their tasks.

But without a robust and streamlined strategy in place, mobile DevOps won’t automatically deliver the goods. You need to have a solid understanding of a range of different factors. These will include user preferences, development trends, and software delivery. One thing that is clear is that expectations are changing at a remarkable rate, and you need to ensure that your customer engagement and offering are up to par. Agility is the watchword, and your DevOps strategy needs to have this flexibility built in.

Here we’ll take a look at four must-have aspects of any streamlined mobile DevOps strategy to help you get started. Read on to find out more.

1. Planning

It might seem like an obvious point to make, but thorough planning is the indispensable foundation of any effective mobile DevOps strategy. Having said that, you’d be surprised just how many firms fail to take this basic requirement properly into account. It doesn’t matter exactly what your specialism is – whether it’s HR software or communications app development – your project must be planned in fine detail.

Ready the conferencing hardware and software then get everyone who’s working on the project together. That means all stakeholders from your developers, testers, operations team, and more. It’s then that you can start to map out what form your project will take. It’s a good idea to get clients involved at this early stage as well, because their needs are of the utmost importance and it’s imperative to keep them in mind at all times. Think about what everyone requires from the project (including quality control requirements) and how to deliver it. Consider the potential risks involved and what steps you might take in order to mitigate these.

2. People and communication

It’s the same with any project – unless you’ve got the right people on board, and the right chemistry between them, you’re almost certainly doomed to fail. Your team, therefore, is of the utmost importance. Mobile DevOps inevitably involves a wide array of different people with unique skill sets, who will make their own particular contributions to the project. You should prioritize finding the right mix and maintaining morale across the board. This will go a long way to ensuring harmonious working between the different wings of your team.

Part of keeping team morale high is making sure that communications between different parts of the team are smooth. DevOps projects, as we’ve noted, tend to have quite a large number of people working on them. There is a danger that different teams can become somewhat siloed. That’s where each smaller element of the team fails to work coherently with those around it. You should therefore make a concerted effort to keep the different groups working on your project collaborating closely with one another through a regular team meeting. In this way, your personnel are sure to add up to more than the mere sum of their parts.

3. Testing, monitoring and delivery

Continual testing, monitoring, and delivery are all essential in order to ensure that deployment is smooth and free of avoidable errors. Every build should be subject to rigorous testing so that any snags can be discovered and ironed out. Monitoring must be similarly thorough at each step of the way. This helps – among other things – to keep the production process stable so that any unexpected hitches can get dealt with more effectively, as and when they arise. Continual testing and updating is more important than ever, given the advent of the Internet of Things, with its always-on nature.

It’s also important to remember that speed is of the essence when it comes to mobile DevOps. The more effective your testing, monitoring, and delivery processes are, the quicker you’ll be able to roll out new apps. In other words, increasing software velocity – and you’ll be able to do so with confidence that they’ll be reliable, user-friendly, and secure. This will help to improve the overall efficiency of the development process as well as boosting user and client satisfaction. It will also improve return on investment while helping to minimize the risk of cost overruns, thus lifting your profit margins.

4. Quality and efficiency

You might have agonized about how to strike the right balance between quality and efficiency in mobile DevOps. Surely, you may wonder, there has to be some sort of trade-off between the two? But in fact, the two go hand in hand. We’ve already alluded to the importance of efficiency in DevOps processes. Maximizing quality in the development of new apps can also do a lot to improve efficiency, save money, and cut out unnecessary expenses.

After all, there’s no getting away from it: development can be an expensive business. A laser-like focus on quality can prevent avoidable complications in the development process. Crucially, it also helps to maintain user satisfaction (always a vital consideration). Think about a communications app development to serve as one of the new Zoom alternatives, for example – a particularly fraught area. A communications app that’s unreliable, prone to errors, or generally shoddy could have a devastating impact on a company’s reputation. Robust DevOps tooling not only allows for better quality, but also enhances efficiency by freeing up developers and testers to work on other tasks.

A version of this article originally appeared here.