InspiringApps’ Core Values

2 years ago
InspiringApps’ Core Values Image

Our five core values shape who we are in and out of our office. Join us for a deep dive into our core values—how we demonstrate them, what they mean to us, and how they help us create beautiful and engaging digital products for others. 

Empathy

Understanding and perspective that shapes the process and the product

Empathy comes naturally to our team members, and it’s easy for us to find the right questions that get to the heart of our client’s intent. We have a deep capacity for understanding a problem from a business, development, and user perspective, which holistically frames our entire software development process in the key areas that make a product successful.

Respect

Consideration and appreciation for client, team, and individual

Diverse backgrounds, skills, hobbies, and perspectives make us a stronger team. We appreciate and embrace each other’s differences. We respect our clients and their ideas, and we work hard to approach problem solving from a positive perspective as equal partners.

Inclusivity

A mandate kept top of mind for the InspiringApps team

We seek equality for both our team and our products. Inclusivity best practices are made throughout our software development process, and inclusive recruiting initiatives remain top of mind for our team.

Commitment

Approaching tasks and team with passion and intention

Easy to use is often hard to design, so we sweat the details, treating your app development project like our own. Clients repeatedly convey they love working with us, because we passionately dig into projects alongside them. Our team is committed to the work and to each other. Small but mighty, the culture has a cohesive atmosphere that never skips a beat.

Integrity

Approaching all with heart and authenticity

Integrity is at the core of all we do at InspiringApps and is exhibited throughout our hiring, training, and development practices. Honesty, excellence, and authenticity are as important to us as they are to our clients.

Do our values align?

We’re passionate. Determined. Crazy talented, yet humble. The mix of people that make up the InspiringApps team truly represents the values that influence our work most—empathy, respect, inclusivity, commitment, and integrity. These foundational commonalities contribute to both our great company culture and the beautiful and engaging apps we create.

We thrive on creating strong partnerships with innovative clients who want to make a difference. Let’s get started.

Working with the right people makes all the difference

Passionate. Determined. Crazy talented, yet humble. All words that describe the mix of people that make up the team at InspiringApps. We’re an inclusive group of employees who care deeply about what we do. Our team is the not-so-hidden treasure behind our success.
Recent Posts

Business & Strategy

Best Questions To Ask To Find the Right App Development Company

Building an app presents incredible opportunities, and that’s not just for tech disruptors. You can sell your product, grow your business, delight and engage customers—even transform your customers’ experience. All the above are possible with the right app development partner. But finding that partner means asking the right questions at the forefront. To determine which app developer is the best to hire for your project, focus on these areas: Developer capabilities Digital product strategy and design Process and communication Financials and legalities For the best questions and considerations behind these areas, read on. Questions on Developer Capabilities Before diving into the specifics of your project, it’s crucial to understand the overall capabilities and expertise of your potential app development partner. The following questions will help you gauge these critical aspects. What technologies do you use and why? This question helps you understand how the development company thinks. Worry less about the specific technology they use and more about whether the development company can clearly articulate their reason for using it and the benefits to you and your product. Unless you are already a technology pro, choose a partner based on their expertise. Let them use tools they know to get great results. Have you done anything similar to what I’m asking you to do? You don’t need an exact match or even a company that has developed a similar app. Still, your potential development partner should be able to draw parallels to their relevant work. Shared connection points, whether on the industry, product, or technical level, will increase the likelihood of your project’s success. What are the riskiest parts of my project? Asking your app development partner this question will give you insight into your project and its areas of expertise. To know whether it’s worth continuing down the development path, consider risks early on to develop a plan. The riskiest parts are those that will likely make or break the product. How do you approach integrating AI and other emerging technologies into app development? This question helps you understand the development company’s experience with AI and other emerging technologies and their commitment to staying current in these rapidly evolving fields. A competent partner should be able to explain their approach to integrating new technologies. Look for a partner who can articulate the potential benefits and challenges of implementing AI and other new technologies in your project. They should demonstrate a balanced approach that leverages innovation while ensuring practical, user-focused solutions. Questions on Digital Product Strategy & Design A great app is more than just code—it’s a solution to a problem or a means to achieve a business goal. These questions will help you understand how your potential partner approaches the strategic aspects of app development. How do you approach digital product strategy and planning? A strong app development partner should have a clear process for supporting digital product strategy. This process might include market research, user persona development, and competitive analysis. Understanding their approach will help you gauge how thoroughly they consider your app’s broader context. What is your UI/UX design strategy? Look for a development partner who integrates UI/UX design throughout the entire app development process, not just as an afterthought. A competent partner will explain how their UI/UX process helps transform your ideas into user experiences that are both functional and visually appealing. How do you ensure that the app’s design aligns with user needs and business goals? An effective app development partner should systematically align design with user needs and business goals. They should conduct in-depth discussions to understand your product vision and objectives. Ask about their methods for gathering user insights, such as interviews, surveys, or usability testing. A strong partner will incorporate user feedback throughout the development process. How do you handle post-launch strategy and ongoing improvements? App development doesn’t end at launch. Ask about their approach to gathering user feedback, analyzing app performance, and planning for future updates and feature additions. A good partner will have a clear strategy for maintaining and evolving the app over time. How do you ensure long-term relevance and competitiveness? With technology evolving rapidly, it’s important to understand how a potential partner stays current and evaluates new technologies for inclusion in their digital product strategies. Look for a partner who demonstrates a thoughtful, strategic approach to technology adoption, rather than simply chasing the latest trends. They should be able to provide examples of how they’ve successfully incorporated new technologies into past projects to drive long-term value and competitiveness. Questions on Process & Communication The success of your project often hinges on smooth collaboration and clear communication. These questions will help you understand how the development team operates and how they’ll keep you informed and involved throughout the process. Do you outsource or offshore any part of your development process? Most app development projects loosely break into several stages: discovery, design, development and testing, and deployment. Some companies choose to outsource one or more parts of this process. Seek to understand how the company will work with outside contractors, if at all. Offshoring may offer reduced hourly rates, but consider other factors. Offshoring typically requires extra project management effort. Cultural differences can introduce risk to the project. Less cohesion and familiarity among team members can increase the total time required. Do these trade-offs decrease the price? Who will be my main point of contact once the project kicks off? Multiple people will probably be involved in building your app, but you don’t want to have to navigate who the right contact is for what. There are also times when it’s more efficient to go right to the source when discussing technical or design challenges. Make sure you can talk with developers and designers as needed, but that there is a project manager keeping tabs on your project—and who is your first point of contact for any needs. How will we communicate during the app development process? Numerous ways to interact remotely include phone calls, video conferences, screen sharing, and collaborative online workspaces. The best app development partners take advantage of all these options, creating a virtual environment that’s as interactive and productive as in-person collaboration. Ideally, your app development partner provides seamless interaction, whether you are working through complex issues or getting answers to quick questions. Electronic communication is equally essential for project management and knowledge capture. Many developers use tools such as GitHub, ZenHub, Asana, Slack, Microsoft Teams, or others to track project progress and facilitate team communication. These tools help ensure the project stays on track and team members remain aligned, regardless of their physical location. You might already have such a tool in place, and your potential app development partner should be on board with using it or integrating it with their existing systems to streamline project management and communication. Look for a partner with a proven track record of successful collaboration who can clearly articulate their approach to maintaining strong communication in a distributed work environment. How will I receive status updates, and how often? The answer to this question should consider your personal preference. You want to ensure the frequency of status updates is compatible with your desire to receive them. As noted above, there are numerous ways for you to stay connected, and your chosen app development partner should be willing to adapt to your needs. How involved will I be in the project? When do I get to provide input? Big reveals make for good television on home renovation shows, but it’s not how you want to receive your product. It’s best to monitor your software throughout the project’s life, so you can make course corrections as needed. The best app development shops work with agile methodologies, simultaneously building and testing small code sections. Expect to interact with the app early in the process and as your developer adds each piece of functionality. Furthermore, you are likely the subject matter expert for your product, and your partner ought to rely on you for knowledge of your industry and customer. Your feedback, including help with testing the app during development, ensures that the best product is delivered. What if my priorities or scope change during the project? Successful software projects are rarely defined completely and then built to that definition. You want a software development partner who can adapt to your needs. Ideally, your developer will provide you with a central point of contact throughout the project and expect things to shift while allowing flexibility to meet your changing priorities and timelines. Questions on Financials & Legalities Understanding your project’s financial and legal aspects is crucial for avoiding surprises and ensuring a smooth development process. These questions will help clarify your app’s cost structure and ownership details of your digital product. How much will my project cost? You want to be able to plan your time and budget for the length of the project. Ensure your development partner provides a written estimate so you can expressly agree on the expectations. Beyond the total cost, it’s essential to understand the pricing structure. The most common options are an hourly rate or a fixed cost, plus maintenance and support. Hourly Rates: With hourly pricing, the developer charges a rate for each hour worked and tracks the amount of time spent on your project. In the proposal, the development company estimates how many hours they believe the project will take but will charge you for every hour worked, whether that total time is below or above the approximation. Fixed Cost: In a fixed-price project, the developer will provide you with the project’s total cost and (hopefully) stick with that number. When work above and beyond the original scope is necessary, the developer should tell you how much extra work will cost before moving ahead. Maintenance & Support: Ongoing work after the app launches is almost always required to acquire new users and keep current users engaged. This type of work ranges from bug fixes (there will always be bugs!) to testing updated operating system releases and adding new functionality to the app. It’s worth understanding upfront how your partner would recommend structuring a maintenance and support program and the associated fee structure. Who will own the app? As the customer, you should own the finished product. Find the Right App Developer for Your Project For the success of your project, take the time to find the right developer—one who: Has the expertise and strategic insights to help you deliver the app you want to build. Focuses on real user needs, tangible results, and effective communication. Has the proper cost structure for you. Use these questions and considerations to help you learn more about potential app development partners before you choose.  For more resources, consider reading our free book, InspiringApps: A Business Perspective on Building Mobile Apps, to gain a foundational understanding of the business and technical considerations involved in building an app. And, if you’re curious about how InspiringApps would respond to questions like the ones we’ve just shared, find our answers in Your Journey With InspiringApps.

2 days ago

AI Artificial Intelligence

Apple Intelligence: Empowering Businesses of All Sizes

Image Source: Apple Newsroom Apple announced its “AI for the rest of us” plan. But what does that mean for the future of digital products in enterprise, mid- and small-sized businesses? In this article, we’ll explore the implications of Apple’s AI strategy and share key takeaways for business leaders navigating the evolving landscape of AI-driven innovation. But first—a little “AI housekeeping.” A Working Definition of AI Artificial Intelligence (AI) focuses on creating smart machines that can learn from data, identify patterns, and perform tasks typically requiring human intelligence. Unlike traditional software solutions that rely on explicit programming and predefined rules, such as “if the customer’s age is greater than X, do this” or “if the bank balance is greater than Y, do that,” AI systems can make decisions without being explicitly programmed for every scenario. Recommendations for Businesses A little over a year ago, Brad Weber, CEO of InspiringApps, spoke with Tim Hayden about AI and more, as the above video captures (for the full conversation, see the playlist AI & Data Privacy: InspiringApps & Brain+Trust webinars). Considering the latest announcements at Apple WWDC 2024, we followed up with Brad to capture more insights and business recommendations. We found that Apple’s approach to intelligence mirrors our own in many ways: seamless integration, user-focused design, privacy, and business efficacy. 1. Focus on enhanced user experiences. Recommendation: Through seamless integration, focus on delivering tangible benefits to users that take advantage of Apple’s AI-driven user experiences, such as personalized recommendations and predictive features. “AI has enhanced the Apple user experience for many years. Has your phone predicted your commute time to work when you are a few blocks away from home? Has your watch calculated the total yards of your swim workout and broken down the distance by stroke? Both features (and many more) are driven by AI, but Apple treats that as an implementation detail users don’t need to know about. They should just experience the surprise and delight.”—BRAD WEBER, INSPIRINGAPPS CEO Most people have experienced AI without realizing it. “Hey Siri, read my messages” is a prevalent example of AI in everyday life. With Apple adding more ways to engage with app functionality through Siri and system-level features, properly defining and configuring App Intents may become a new strategy for businesses to ensure their in-app content and services are discoverable and intelligently integrated into users’ queries and workflows. For example, the improved typing interface with Siri could make Apple devices and apps more accessible for users with certain disabilities or situational impairments that make voice input challenging. If these intelligent features prove useful for accessibility, businesses may be able to reach and serve a broader audience. Businesses using messaging platforms for customer engagement could also leverage the new intelligent writing and summarization tools to streamline communication and quickly synthesize key points from lengthy customer inquiries or feedback, improving response times and quality. 2. Prioritize user privacy. Recommendation: Be transparent about data collection and usage, give users control over their data, and take every precaution to protect user information. AI enables computers to tackle complex problems and operate in the “gray areas,” where they can develop their own solutions based on the given goals or outcomes. To achieve this, AI relies on extensive data to effectively train models and make precise predictions or decisions, such as identifying objects in images or determining the optimal course of action in a given situation. This reliance on large datasets for training AI models raises important questions about data privacy and the implications of using personal information in developing AI systems. “With the new generative AI features in iOS 18, Apple will continue to prefer the privacy of on-device processing. When server capabilities are required, limited data is sent to Apple, and none of it is stored beyond the current ‘session.’ And if Chat GPT (and other engines/providers in the future) are beneficial, users will explicitly approve each data share. It is highly unlikely that any user-identifiable data will be sent to OpenAI as part of those interactions unless the user specifically opts in with their OpenAI account details.”—BRAD WEBER, INSPIRINGAPPS CEO In short, Apple’s commitment to privacy is a key differentiator, and businesses should follow their lead. 3. Consider Swift 6 adoption. Recommendation: Consider adopting Swift 6 for your development projects to reach a wider audience and streamline your development processes. “I’m excited to see Apple’s Swift 6 push on Windows and Linux, including improved Swift language support in Microsoft’s Visual Studio Code editor. Our team enjoys Swift development, and the language’s safety features have definitely reduced incidents of crashes on Apple devices. I look forward to those same benefits on other platforms.”—BRAD WEBER, INSPIRINGAPPS CEO 4. Stay adaptable. Recommendation: Businesses should explore the full spectrum of AI and machine learning technologies to find the most effective solutions for their specific needs. From predictive analytics and recommendation engines to computer vision and natural language processing, there are numerous ways to harness intelligence to benefit users and drive business growth. “It’s important to remember that generative AI is not the only form of AI. Although it has captured headlines for the last year or two, there are loads of other ways to benefit users with the thoughtful use of AI and ML.”—BRAD WEBER, INSPIRINGAPPS CEO Advanced predictive analytics can provide valuable insights into future trends and user behaviors. Intelligence can use data analysis to predict popular features, design elements, and evolving user needs. This foresight can inform decisions, helping to create digital products that meet current user expectations and are well-positioned to adapt to future demands. Smart Business Moves Apple’s advancements present both opportunities and challenges for businesses of all sizes. By focusing on seamless integration, user privacy, and delivering tangible benefits through smart algorithms and machine learning, businesses can position themselves for success. The key is to approach all development decisions with a user-centric mindset, focusing on how technologies can solve problems, streamline processes, and create meaningful benefits for your target audience. In other words, always prioritize creating value for your users. Further Reading & Resources Gartner: Learn To Build an AI Strategy for Your Business Apple: Machine Learning Research InspiringApps & Brain+Trust: AI & Data Privacy Webinar Recap

1 month ago

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