App Builder or a Mobile Database

If you are like many small organizations, you have probably relied on spreadsheets to manage allot of your data. Unfortunately, spreadsheets do not migrate well to mobile touch interfaces. So what is the best option for managing business data and workflows on mobile devices without the expense and hassle of building an entire mobile app from the ground up?

You may have considered using a low-code app building solution. They all promise to transform your business with little or no technical background required.  Solutions in the app builder category include Appian, FileMaker Go, TrackVia and Zoho Creator.

While visions of building custom apps may sound cool, they do not really address what we really want to do, which is to migrate our existing data workflows from desktop spreadsheets to mobile devices. So let us consider for a moment the humble but formable alternative to the app builder, the Mobile Database. While it may not sound as sexy as an app builder, a mobile database solution may be a smarter choice for businesses who are looking to avoid tedium, frustration and unnecessary expense.

A database offers greater flexibility and changes are simple and fluid. If for example, you need to add an address column to your contacts, that only takes a few seconds in a database app and can be done directly from the mobile device itself. With an app builder, however, you would have to build a new version of your app and roll it out to all your devices.

If you are already using a spreadsheet or a database to manage your data on the desktop then building an app is an entirely unnecessary step. With a mobile database, you can simply import your existing data and you are ready to go.

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