Many businesses believe that once their application is developed and deployed, it only needs to be touched if they desire new features. This view, however, doesn’t take into account the many facets of application maintenance, and how it can help improve the user experience or even prevent a data breach.
The world of technology is rapidly changing. So even if your application doesn’t need new features, it may still need changes and updates to keep it current, working well, and secure.
Why Applications Need Maintenance
Application maintenance is about fixing issues with your application. But the reasons to have an application reviewed and updated go beyond bug fixes.
Today’s users are incredibly technically savvy. Many people have grown up as digital natives – individuals who don’t remember a time when they didn’t have access to the internet, a tablet, or a smartphone. Because of this, applications need to stay current with the features that users – even users internal to your business – expect to ensure the best experience when using the application.
While we have pointed out that bug fixes aren’t the only reason for maintenance, they are still an important reason. Correcting issues that may keep your application from functioning properly or prevent your users from completing tasks is a critical reason your application may need to be reviewed and updated.
Going hand in hand with corrective work on your application is preventative maintenance. Various preventative activities – from database cleanup to security scans – can prevent costly downtime, protect important data, and increase the effectiveness of your application.
Lastly, improving your application for usability, maintainability, and performance is important. A new look or user flow may improve the application while increasing the performance and speed could mean better ROI on your application. Additionally, periodically the languages and framework that applications are built on are updated. By having your application updated to the newest version, you may increase performance and security all at once.
Do I Need Application Maintenance?
The reality is, every application, no matter how simple or complex, will eventually need some maintenance.
Basic websites with simplistic functionality may seem immune to needing a tune-up, but when web server software moves to a new version or security holes are discovered, even the most feature limited site will need review and updating.
For more advanced websites and applications, including mobile apps, it’s critical to ensure that the site is meeting your users’ needs with features and functionality, that bug fixes are implemented and tested completely, and that the application is secure. Performance is especially important for web and mobile applications. For instance, studies have shown that mobile users will abandon a site that takes more than 3 seconds to load.
For internal business applications, regular review and maintenance can mean the difference between team efficiencies and significant downtime. Databases with old or unused data can slow down queries and reports, while security issues could result in breaches, malware, or ransomware attacks on vulnerable systems.
Even when your application is running well, it should never be assumed it is immune to needing some sort of maintenance plan in place. No matter the complexity of your application, application maintenance will keep your users happy, your systems running smoothly, and your data secure. Feel free to contact us to learn more about the different types of maintenance tasks and which best cover your application.
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