With this spark of an idea there are some important factors to keep in mind:
Constrain the scope.
The application should be focused on a specific need. This keeps it from growing into a “this will fix everything!” solution. If it is a success, you can expand and enhance it later.
The project should take 6-12 weeks.
Any more than that and you are back to step #1. This may mean using an off-the-shelf tool or starter project that is easy to customize.
Don’t lock yourself into a massive platform with lots of costs.
Not yet, anyway. You want to feel out how mobile will work for your business. You need to ensure that this project doesn’t leave you bound to a service provider in a long-term contract if it doesn’t work out.
What platforms do you target?
Have you provided mobile devices for your organization? Then you may be able to get away with an app for a single platform. If you are in a Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) environment then you need to keep in mind the range of OSs (iOS, Android, Windows) and the multiple versions of each. BYOD is becoming very common in the workplace and it means you have to consider the costs involved in supporting a range of devices.
Many smaller apps are read-only. Some companies have tried to just make a mobile-ready website and leave it at that, but we’ve all had experiences with slow or no connectivity. Sometimes this is even in our own office building! Save yourself a ton of headaches and complaints. If it makes sense for your app, make sure it can work offline.
Get expert help.
It’s very likely that you have some highly skilled developers on your staff but mobile development still has a steep learning curve. Bring in the experts to help guide or build your first projects. It could be a simple one-off expense or they can work with your staff to help build the skills and workflow that is needed for long-term projects.