As an enterprise begins to take the necessary steps towards deploying mobile apps that keep their employees connected and productive, it is critical that they create a workable mobility strategy that deeply aligns with their existing business goals. The best strategy will ultimately enable and accelerate new opportunities and processes for their users.
To get started, here are some initial steps to consider when developing a successful enterprise mobility strategy for your organization:
Create a Mobility Center of Excellence (MCoE)
Your organization’s enterprise IT department nor your executive team can develop a successful enterprise mobility strategy alone. To create a strategy that meets the needs of all departments and users, a Mobility Centers of Excellence (MCoE) offers a space for your organization to organize, manage, and distribute mobile enterprise initiatives and solutions.
This group can be made up of multiple divisions or groups that may develop and distribute internal mobile apps to their teams, external apps for clients and customers, create security plans and BYOD policies, help implement solutions for cloud and app issues, and serve as the “nerve center” for all things mobile in your organization. Essentially, this group should serve as a place to get a “big picture” perspective on your organization’s app development project. Before your team can begin searching for app vendors and solutions, your team must first define your initial goals and document your plan for using mobility to improve your current processes and modernize your current legacy applications.
Define Your Enterprise’s Business Goals
Without goals, your strategy will ultimately fall short. When developing a workable enterprise mobility strategy for your organization, your team must think with your end goals in mind. Consider the main business goals your organization wants to reach and desired long-term and short-term goals to meet them. One of the best ways for your organization to get a long-term strategy moving is to start solving small but significant problems. What is a current challenge all of your employees are facing that could be resolved with modern technology?
For example, do your employees rely on desktop applications for submitting timesheets and expense reports? For those working away from the office and relying on VPN to do so, this can be incredibly difficult. By simplifying and mobilizing these processes into bite-sized micro-apps, your users can complete these basic but critical tasks from their smartphone or tablet in a few taps from any location, at any time.
Once your team begins solving these simple tasks with mobile processes, your users and MCoE will begin thinking of more use cases that can be accelerated with micro-apps.
Focus on the Data and Workflows Your Employees Need to Access From Their Mobile Devices
Once you have solved the small problems, it’s time to consider the larger, more complex issues. For instance, the data and workflows that your employees use on a daily basis that is likely siloed and stored in multiple, complex systems. Unfortunately, accessing these systems from a tablet or smartphone is often difficult when using mobile web, and pushing your desktop systems to mobile devices does not exhibit intuitive user experiences or the functionality that is expected by users.
Your employees expect to access and use the data that they are accustomed to using on a desktop to be even simpler when accessing it from their mobile device. When developing a mobile strategy, consider which use cases are most critical for your employees and which data is needed from which systems to do so. For example, perhaps your sales teams need access to client account information stored in Salesforce while traveling as well as access to real-time inventory from SAP on the plant floor. The right mobile solution can integrate easily with these existing systems of record and intuitively bring both disparate workflows together into a unified and simplified experience on the mobile device, mitigating the user from having to jump back and forth between applications to complete one workflow.
While initially developing your first enterprise app may seem like a daunting task, by including employees from across your organization to provide feedback and use cases, your organization can be well on its way to improved efficiency and productivity. Ultimately, the longer your organization waits to deploy mobile apps to your users, the more time, money and productivity you will lose compared to your competition.