Don't Go Mobile for Consumers — Do it for You!
As important as mobile capabilities are for consumer-facing services, your employees rely on crucial work tools and seamless information flow that only mobile can provide.
Every executive worth his or her salt knows that today’s consumers are the most informed and connected in history, which means that if you’re not there for them wherever they are, you’ll be sure to lose business. But it’s not just the customers who need attention — your employees stand to gain from having powerful software at their fingertips as well. Ensuring strong, reliable service for these critical work tools is essential to productivity.
Companies have everything to gain from mobile work tools, including the guarantee that employees will able able to access and share information, work on projects, and collaborate and communicate with team members from anywhere in the world. Plus, with tools like business value dashboards (BVDs), employees can keep their finger on the pulse on essential metrics of the business at large.
When you review how diverse and critical the use for these tools have become, it becomes clear that much of a company’s potential rests on the strength of its IT infrastructure. Oftentimes, integrating smaller services can be an indicator of the weaknesses and vulnerabilities of broader services.
By evaluating your capacity for mobile enterprise tools, you can specify and contextualize the risk that other customer-facing services will go offline. Don’t forget the importance of self-maintenance — sometimes the best crystal ball is a mirror.
A Tool in Every Hand
As Kris Johnson points out at Inteqna, going mobile means much more than simply connecting your employees’ smartphones to your company email (though that is a good first step). Most companies now keep comprehensive, real-time databases, and employees should be able to access their critical information from every step of their daily journey. With data-enabled apps and BVDs, employees can collaborate on projects, reclaim time wasted on paper copies, and quicken turnaround rates.
Many have hailed the efficiency and productivity that the digital age has brought with it, and mobile is perhaps the most powerful way to leverage connectivity and improve the work cycle. Considering the highly integrated role that technology and IT will broadly play in coming years (as CIO forecasts), a rapid implementation of mobile tools into daily office tasks is the most prudent adoption for any enterprise.
IT Is the Great Denominator
Both employee and customer-facing applications and mobile services rely on the strength of a company’s IT infrastructure. Without proper capacity management, IT systems are constantly at risk of downtime, which not only incites the rage of customers and harms a company’s reputation, but leaves employees without crucial work tools. As incorporating yet more digital features has already become a necessity, IT systems that can’t handle further resources are highly problematic.
When integrating tools like mobile applications, companies should be sure to thoroughly evaluate their capacity, as well take a deeper look at whether they’re using their current resources effectively. Most companies find that they pay for more IT resources than they actually need and can consolidate servers to accommodate value-add services like mobile enterprise apps, thereby offsetting some IT costs. Moreover, managers can gain insight into future risks and opportunities and better chart their ability to grow digitally.
Going mobile is important because the workers of today demand it — but it also acts as a checkup to see whether your IT is strong enough to support the systems of tomorrow.
(Main image credit: Andrew Hart/flickr)