As the mobility revolution moves from the consumer app space into the realm of Enterprise Mobility, companies of all sizes have to make decisions around how best to leverage the mobile apps in increasing employee productivity and efficiency while positively impacting overall business outcomes. These decisions involve myriad technology choices such as ‘build vs. buy’, devices and OS platforms to support, if to allow employees to bring own devices (and now wearable’s) or not, how to handle data security as well as how best to expose data from the current Enterprise systems and whether to leverage a MEAP platform to manage this mobility infrastructure. Of course the biggest elephant in the room is to figure out how to define and measure ROI for any mobility initiative.
So how are the businesses using mobile apps and how do they choose which mobile apps to use and what kind of impact are these choices having on the overall business mission and strategy? I recently came across a survey done by CDW that attempted to answer some of these questions. I want to share few of the results of that survey that I found interesting
- 48% of businesses said that their mobile app budget increased year over year and on average businesses are spending 11% of their IT budgets on Enterprise Mobility initiatives
- Even though majority of the businesses (77%) allow their employees to use off-the-shelf mobile apps, only about 36% of employees in these companies actually use any apps, thus showing a fairly significant gap in potential and reality for use of mobility for increasing employee productivity and efficiency
- Companies today are using about the same number of ‘custom’ built apps as ‘off-the-shelf’ apps, but majority of the companies plan to use more ‘custom’ apps in future so they can tailor the app features to meet the unique needs of their business. And not surprisingly this number goes up higher in conjunction with the size of the business as larger businesses are likely to have more customized business processes and have the resources to invest in deploying ‘custom’ app
- Also not surprisingly Sales professionals are the highest percentage of mobile app users in businesses followed by Business/operations and IT systems
- Data security, availability of apps on multiple device platforms, reliability as well as continuous data availability are some of the key factors used in decisions around development of mobile apps. What I found interesting is the fact that user application needs and user interface design got a much lower consideration compared to the aforementioned factors. It could very well be because of the survey pool being more skewed to IT decision makers but it does talk to the need of educating the businesses on how critical User Experience is even in B2E and B2B apps
- Some of the challenges that companies are encountering in Enterprise Mobility initiatives are technical support for users post deployment of the apps, designing effective UX and UI, accurately estimating mobility project costs and finding the development resources for wide variety of mobile platforms. None of these findings come as a surprise for me as we hear similar feedback from our Enterprise clients
- And lastly it wasn’t surprising to see a finding that said majority of the respondent companies have struggled to define formal metrics to measure ROI for mobility initiatives but many believe that mobile apps are saving their employees on average 7.5 hours per employee per week. 82% of the respondents also believed that the custom mobile apps have resulted in increase in both business topline and bottom-line
These are some fascinating data points but of course each company has it’s own set of reality when it comes to Enterprise Mobility initiatives. What are your data points and how do they compare to the survey results above? I would love to hear from you.
Here is an infographic about few elements of successful enterprise mobile strategy that are working very well for our clients.Click on the image to download this infographics: