The deployment of any app can always prove to be a difficult process, and when your app submission process doesn’t allow for the frictionless release of your new creation, it only makes your team’s work more difficult.
Here are the biggest pitfalls found in the app submission process.
#1 Are Different Teams Involved?
Involving multiple teams and tools in the submission process can help you get the pre-launch marketing and other aspects in order, but the key to involving multiple teams is to make sure that everyone who’s part of the process is actually necessary to the process.
Involving everyone just for the sake of involving them is no way to handle your app’s submission process. Extra hands are only likely to cause delays and disruption that could otherwise be avoided. That means everyone involved in the submission process needs to have a purpose in the process, and they need to be made aware of that purpose.
As you look over the workflow, you also need to identify if multiple tools are involved in the submission process. If so, see if there are any opportunities to consolidate the number of tools used or adopt a new tool that can replace more than one of your current systems. This will help keep everything streamlined, simple, and easier to manage.
#2 What People Are Bottlenecks?
A strong organizational structure showcasing every person who will somehow be involved in the submission process is essential for a smooth release. Allowingmultiple teams to manage themselves will only lead to confusion and miscommunication. There needs to be a solid process for them to follow when remedying issues, asking questions, and collaborating.
Once you have laid out the communication structure and workflow of the submission process, you can identify the bottlenecks that are part of your current process and find a way to phase them out or go around them all together.
The key here, of course, is to allow for team members to communicate with each other easily without allowing important information to circumvent team leaders. Laying out when a meeting should be called and when cross-team communication is necessary are important to speed up the submission process and will make for a much smoother ride.
#3 Is Good Preparation In Place?
One of the biggest pitfalls development teams often face is a lack of testing prior to the official review of the app. Not only can that lead to missed opportunities in the development of the app itself, but it can also cause delays in the app’s deployment. Don’t make the mistake of thinking your business can be its own beta tester for your applications.
TestFlight, designed by Apple, can help you get real users testing your application before you release it, thus allowing for your team to find and address bugs and issues before any end user gets access to the application. Using TestFlight can also help you identify any errors that would otherwise halt the official review process and lead to delays.
Having a solid preparation and planning strategy that’s implemented before the release of any application is essential to the app’s success.
#4 Who Can Submit the App?
To ensure there is no confusion and, of course, that only the right build/version is submitted to the app store, it is important that the communication structure and roles you lay out clearly indicate the person responsible for submitting the app for review.
Failing to identify this person can leave the team waiting around for nothing to happen, or cause confusion when multiple people assume the role and try to submit the app (perhaps too soon).
Again, this all boils down to organization and communication. If your team members are being guided so that they regularly communicate with one another and so that everyone knows where they stand in the workflow, you can avoid mistakes and delays in the submission process.
It‘s also a great idea to not only rely on one person to be able to submit the app. Because what happens If the person is on vacation, ill or not available? Just make sure everyone knows who’s in charge of the submission at any given time.
Once everyone has gone back-and-forth for however long and the team(s) has come together to review the most recent version of the app, the person responsible for submitting it should be sure to inform everyone else that it’s about to enter the review phase.
For the days to follow, the team will then be awaiting feedback from the App Store team before they do any more work on the app. When/if that feedback does come back, the team can then start the workflow again and begin implementing whatever changes were requested.
Once they reach the submission point again, that same person will be the one responsible for sending the updated version through. This helps avoid miscommunication across your own teams and with the App Store Review team. The person responsible for submitting the app should take control over discussing with the App Store Review team whenever necessary and then relaying all pertinent information back to their colleagues.
Design Pitfalls Out of Your Processes
By laying out your app submission processes, you can begin to see these pitfalls (and maybe even a few others) that are ultimately slowing down your team’s workflow and making them substantially less efficient.
Oftentimes, identifying them is the biggest hurdle because it can be hard to examine your routine and find a way to see it in a new, optimized light. However, once you figure out what the pitfalls are, all you have to do is go through and find where there’s room for improvement.
No team will ever be against becoming more productive and more efficient, because it just means less work for them and more success for everyone. So, sit everyone down, listen to their feedback, and get everyone on the same page. In no time at all, you’ll be able to improve the speed and effectiveness of your app submission process.