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Essential iOS app features for regulated industries
Discover the must-have iOS app features for regulated industries. Implementing them can help businesses tackle common compliance-related challenges.
Regulated industries (like financial services, healthcare, and manufacturing) face stringent government rules to protect sensitive user data like personal details, credit card details, and others. Apart from the need to strictly adhere to complex directives, these industries also deal with the intricate challenges of data security, privacy, quality control, and risk management.
Regulated businesses that offer services via apps need to equip their applications with features that comply with the regulatory guidelines. From user profile management and user authentication to inventory and supplier management, there are various features to achieve seamless operations.
Continue reading to explore the key challenges that regulated industries face and the iOS app features that can help mitigate them.
Let’s start with understanding the common issues.
Major challenges that regulated businesses face
Data security and privacy
Maintaining security is a major challenge for any regulated business owing to the need to handle sensitive customer data, financial information, and personal records. The challenge lies in safeguarding information against data breaches and ensuring compliance with data protection laws like GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) and HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act).
Maintaining consistent product or service quality standards is another major challenge for regulated industries. It involves rigorous testing and adherence to complex regulations. Some relevant regulations and standards affecting QA include ISO 9001, 21 CFR Part 11, GDPR, and SOC2.
Difficulty in adhering to global regulations
Cultural differences can impact how products or services are perceived and used. A regulated business often faces challenges when expanding globally, including adapting to diverse regulatory environments and complying with government rules of different countries. Additionally, adhering to local customs and languages is crucial for effective communication and compliance.
To mitigate such issues, implementing features like multi-lingual support helps accommodate regional variations. An equally important aspect here is requiring technical expertise to include this functionality. You can hire an experienced iPhone app developer who can make things easy for you.
Regulated industries are subject to a wide range of risks. These are –
Compliance risks- The risk of not complying with regulations.
Financial risks– Not following regulatory norms can make you more prone to fraud or cyberattacks, which may lead to severe financial losses.
Legal risks– The risk of legal action that can be taken by customers or employees.
So, identifying and diminishing such risks is crucial.
Documenting and record-keeping
Maintaining detailed audit trails for data access and changes is essential for compliance. Generating compliance reports and documentation can be time-consuming. Here, the challenge is organizing, achieving, and retrieving documents efficiently. So, making extensive records is a must, often with strict retention requirements.
Supply chain management
The key challenges a regulated business can face in the process of supply chain management include –
- Ensuring all the suppliers and vendors are meeting regulatory standards
- Protecting supply chain data and information from cyber threats
- Maintaining product quality and traceability of raw materials to end users
- Some industries, such as pharmaceuticals and food, require strict temperature and environmental controls throughout the supply chain to preserve product integrity and safety
To address these challenges, supply chain managers in regulated industries need to adopt best practices and establish robust quality management systems. Additionally, maintaining clear communication with stakeholders and building strong relationships with trusted suppliers is equally important.
Customer trust and reputation
Any compliance breach, quality issue, or safety hazard can dissipate trust and damage the company’s reputation. Below are the various challenges related to maintaining a brand reputation in the face of regulatory scrutiny.
- Any violation of the standards and guidelines can result in fines and legal actions that negatively impact the brand’s reputation.
- Consistency in product or service quality is crucial; failing to meet quality standards can lead to product recalls or damaging trust.
App features like a dedicated feedback section can give customers a direct and open channel to communicate with the brand. This transparency signals that the brand values customer input and is willing to listen.
The heightened use of apps in regulated industries
With the rise in popularity and ease of usage of smartphones, most of the clients of regulated businesses can be found and reached on mobile apps. Therefore, it is time to explore how the challenges associated with regulated industries can be addressed with the addition of features in iOS apps.
The next section discusses the features that iOS apps must include to effectively maintain regulatory compliance.
Must-have iOS app features to mitigate regulated industry challenges
Features maintaining transparency and responsiveness help foster trust among customers, and as a result, build strong relationships with them. Let’s see the features that diminish the challenges a regulated industry faces.
To ensure the security and privacy of user data, it is essential to prevent an application from unauthorized access. It is a fundamental security measure that an organization can implement to safeguard against data breaches. Integrating the below security features in the application can help protect them from potential security threats –
- User authentication – Users will need to create secure passwords to access the app.
- Multi-factor authentication– To access accounts, users undergo multiple forms of verification using validation means such as passwords and OTPs.
- Session management– Implementing this will automatically log users out after a time of inactivity. The specific duration of this inactivity period would typically be defined by the system administrator or application developer and can vary depending on the system’s usability requirements.
- Notification of suspicious activity– Implement mechanisms to detect and notify users of suspicious login attempts.
When properly implemented, these features will help protect the user’s information and build the brand’s trust among the audience. This will require professional assistance, so hiring an app developer with security expertise will be worthwhile.
By integrating quality control features (like data entry and validation, user profile management, secure messaging, real-time monitoring, document management, reporting, and analytics) into their iOS apps, regulated businesses can help protect their data, comply with regulations, improve their product quality, and reduce risk. For instance –
- In the healthcare sector, these features can be used to track patient data and ensure it is accurate.
- In manufacturing industries, they help ensure that the product meets quality standards.
- In the transportation industry, regulations cover areas such as vehicle safety standards, driver qualifications, and operational safety procedures. Implementing quality control features ensures the reliability, safety, and efficiency of transportation services.
Robust record-keeping features ensure organizations can easily adhere to regulatory requirements by securely storing and easily retrieving records for audits and reporting. It reduces paperwork, manual entry, and the risk of errors.
Here, are the required digital record-keeping features for iOS apps in regulated industries –
- Document management– To store and organize documents securely.
- Search and retrieval– Implement advanced search functionality, including filters, keywords, and sorting options.
- Audit trail– Maintain an audit log to track all changes and user actions within the record-keeping system.
By incorporating these features into iOS apps, a regulated business can improve the security, integrity, and accessibility of user records. It will help them to comply with regulations and improve efficiency.
Trust assurance module
To foster transparency and trust among users, the trust assurance module helps maintain brand credibility. It is extremely beneficial for regulated businesses like healthcare, legal services, manufacturing, food, and beverages.
Here, are some key features that a trust assurance module should include –
- User ratings and reviews– This feature allows for valuable feedback and transparency. Also, feedback helps organizations to make necessary improvements, ensuring compliance with regulations.
- Rating aggregation– Display average ratings to provide a quick overview of your product/service’s quality. Showcasing them will help your customers make informed decisions before making any purchase. Moreover, gaining consistent positive ratings can serve as evidence of quality meeting regulatory standards.
- User trust badges– In regulated industries like healthcare, displaying trust badges indicates compliance with industry-specific regulations, offering users confidence in the app’s reliability.
Additionally, incorporating such functionalities into the app requires technical expertise, for which hiring a professional iOS app developer is the most viable solution.
Supply chain visibility
Features under this are invaluable for regulated industries because they enable better control, compliance, and transparency throughout the supply chain. The following key functionalities for iOS apps are essential for regulated industries seeking to enhance the efficiency of their supply chain management:
- Real-time monitoring and tracking
- Inventory management
- Supplier management
- Deriving insights using analytics tools
Apart from the features discussed above, integrating multi-lingual support, human-assisted chatbots, geo-location-based searching, and offline data access are beneficial in dealing with issues like globalization, record keeping, and risk management.
It is also important to note that effectively incorporating these functionalities requires technical expertise. If you lack an in-house team, it would be better to partner with a reputable iOS development company experienced in developing and updating apps for regulated industries.
Author Bio :
Nathan Smith is an experienced web and app developer, currently working with TechnoScore- a leading Web and Mobile App development company. As a technology enthusiast, he is passionate about sharing his web and application development knowledge through his articles. Nathan keeps himself up-to-date with all the latest trends, innovations, and disruptions happening in and around the IT industry. He is also keen on sharing his ideas and understanding of the innovations in the IT domain with individuals and entrepreneurs interested in the trade.
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