Editor’s Note: Welcome to our weekly Reader Forum section. In an attempt to broaden our interaction with our readers we have created this forum for those with something meaningful to say to the wireless industry. We want to keep this as open as possible, but we maintain some editorial control to keep it free of commercials or attacks. Please send along submissions for this section to our editors at: [email protected]
It’s no question that enterprise mobility is becoming ubiquitous. Many of the organizations I work with are moving beyond low-hanging mobility fruits like e-mail and calendar management. They’re taking enterprise mobility to the next level and mobilizing more sophisticated business functions to create efficiencies to impact what’s most important to any business – the bottom line.
It seems like limited resources the cost of developing and deploying enterprise apps hinder decision-makers before they opt-in for a full-scale mobile initiative, but in my humble opinion and experience, enterprise mobile apps tend to always result in a satisfactory return-on-investment. In fact, Gartner recently predicted that spending by companies on enterprise apps will see a 4% increase over last year, totaling $120 billion, with SaaS and cloud-based services leading the pack.
Take sales, for example. Salespeople need constant access to customer and company data to do their job effectively. Mobile apps specifically tailored for sales teams can immensely help them by providing all the key information they need to expedite and quickly close sales such as lead data and analytics, customer information and the necessary (digital) paperwork – all right at their fingertips, literally. Real-time access to this information will help field sales teams optimize their time, accelerate decisions and seal deals on-the-spot.
In retail, mobile apps can be used to provide price, product and inventory information; virtual product demos; and even check-out customers through mobile barcode readers and credit card processors.
In healthcare, apps allow nurses and doctors to access a wealth of patient information such as health records, diagnosis reports and lab results, information that is vital to help them maximize patient wellness. I’ve seen some healthcare providers go as far as leveraging m-health apps to remotely monitor patients, chat with them and even remind them to take their medication.
So you see, enterprise apps have a wide range of applications which allows for more efficient and effective business functions. Now, let’s make it personal. How about an app for your boss? Or your boss’ boss? From experience, people in top management are always on-the-go – in meetings, at conferences, or managing the company from halfway around the world. They tend not to have 24/7 access to a laptop and in most cases, are inundated with emails about decisions that must be made immediately. In order to make sound business decisions, top management must have the information they need at any time, wherever they are, in order to accelerate business productivity. The epitome of an enterprise app tailored to them would provide such items as a dashboard with corporate metrics on sales, production and other business functions; real-time access to sales, project status and financial snapshots; and streamlined functionality to share information with other executives and business unit leaders to help them make the decisions they must make.
Without doubt, the potential for enterprise mobile apps is limitless. From sales to healthcare and all market verticals in between, enterprise mobile apps can empower any business function to make it more efficient and effective with the common goal of increasing the bottom line. My recommendation is for enterprises to begin planning their mobile app initiatives if they haven’t already, execute it, and constantly analyze and enhance the apps to reap the full benefits of enterprise mobility. We have only seen a glimpse of what enterprise mobile apps are capable of and I’m optimistic that we will soon witness more advanced, innovative and inventive use of apps … perhaps from your organization.