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Federal Agency Directive on Mobility Points to BPM Software

Ben Farrell
June 1, 2012

Last week, the Obama Administration issued a new directive to federal agencies mandating an accelerated effort "to make new and useful services available to consumers on their mobile devices." The directive, entitled "Digital Government: Building a 21st Century Platform to Better Serve the American People," requires each major Federal agency make two key government services available on mobile phones within 12 months.

Meeting both the letter and spirit of this directive will be a tall order using traditional approaches to mobile application development. Using Appian's BPM software, agencies could easily exceed that goal in significantly less time.

The directive opens with a quote from President Obama: "I want us to ask ourselves every day, how are we using technology to make a real difference in people's lives."

Making government work, in The President's words, "anytime, anywhere, on any device" is the right goal. The reality is that mobile development of a single government service on a single mobile platform is costly and time-consuming. Supporting "any device," across an increasing number of services is an enormous burden through standard code-based development approaches.

This is where Appian can play a vital role in enacting the 21st Century Government strategy. For more than a decade, we have led a revolution in "zero-code" application composition. Appian applications are created through visual drag-and-drop. Nearly two years ago, we extended that innovation edge to the world of mobile apps. Any application composed on the Appian platform can be made instantly available on any major mobile device simply through a series of checkboxes.

No specialized skills required. No separate maintenance across disparately upgraded platforms. Tapping the power of mobility truly could not be any simpler.

And Appian mobile apps are native apps, not sub-standard web applications representations on mobile devices. Forms are automatically optimized for different screen sizes. Usage is identical to any other native app on that platform: swipes for iPads, physical buttons for Blackberries, virtual buttons for Androids, etc. Only through native mobile apps can you take advantage of the unique capabilities of a mobile device, such as GPS, device rotation sensors, and image/voice capture.

Federal CIO Steven VanRoekel said, "We're living in an increasingly mobile world and it is critical that the Federal government keep up with the way the American people do business." Read our white paper on "Secure Processing in the Mobile Age" to learn how Appian is removing the barriers to that vision.

Ben Farrell

Director of Corporate Communications

Ben Farrell