Enterprise Mobility Apps: Rethink Business processes, Realize true value

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Doyou look at mobile devices as just another screen for information rendering?  Or do you look at them as a novel tool to transform the business to innovate new business scenarios?You know that your app is sitting in your customer’s pocket. What innovative things can you do beyond information rendering?

As mobility is making inroads into Enterprise space, different organizations, different executives have different ‘takes’ on what mobility can do and what it cannot do. There are some, who think a mobile device (like a smart phone) is just another screen for information rendering. Their mobility initiatives are limited to developing a mobile website. They only shrink the current online website to accommodate the smaller form factor.To be more courteous to their customers, some will go one step further. They adopt RWD (response web design) technologies, so that the customer does not end up scrolling around a large website.

The above thinking does not harness the true value of mobility. Why? Because realizing true value of mobility is not just about ‘m dot website’ or a ‘RWD’ website. You can harness the true value of mobile devices only when you rethink your business processes. A smart phone is much more than a mere information rendering tool. It is a convergence of technologies like the GPS, Multi -Media Camera & NFC. Add the ‘always ON’ feature of the mobile and you can come up with new business processes which revolve around ‘location based services’. Consider this: Walgreens has a prescription refill app where you can scan the prescription through your smart phone, select the closest store for your refill.Walgreens is leveraging the ‘location awareness’&‘information capturing’ capabilities of the mobile. This is something which you could have never done before.

Think of all the touch points of your customer interactions. Be it during the marketing campaigns, be it during the sales process or be it during customer service interactions. The very fact that your app is in your customers pocket can unleash your creative thinking. Think in the areas of deepening customer engagement, enhancing customer experience, reducing servicing times, improving the response times. See this example: Chase has provided the ‘check deposit app’ where a customer can launch the app, take pictures of the check and submit. This is the ultimate convenience for a customer – depositing checkssitting in their homes through their smart phones without having to drive to a bank. Consider another example:  One of the biggest retail chains whom we are working with has transformed the bulky and easily dated product catalogues into product brochures on an iPad. The sales person in the store can easily walk the customer through the brochure, play product videos that are embedded in the brochure, which otherwise is not possible on a physical brochure, thereby enhancing the in-store customer experience.

Innovative thinking can happen for employee experience as well. Enabling mail and calendars as part of the workforce automation on mobile is something mostorganizations have already done. You can help their decision making on the move by mobile enabling the LOB apps (CRM, Sharepoint, Training, Executive dashboards etc.). For example, you can enable a Sales person on the field by providing product information, product collaterals, real time pricing, shipment readiness etc on the mobile. Recently, a large hotel chain provided an iPad app for its Service personnel, which enabled real time updates to the inventory of rooms as soon as a room was ready. Armed with the real time updates, the front desk could now book the rooms as soon as they are ready. In a given day they could sell more rooms, which directly impactsthe bottom line.

More people bought smart phones than PC’s in 2012. The year 2013 is an ‘intersection’ year where mobile internet users will surpass the desktop internet users. Increasingly, your analytics will show that more and more visitors are coming from Smartphones and Tablets. Out of the 40Billion app downloads from the Apple store, 20 Billion app downloads happened in 2012 alone!All these indicate a lifestyle change.Some consumers, especially the Gen Y group, do not look at mobile as just another channel. For them, it is their preferred channel to interact. They love the real time access, anytime, anywhere. The winning Enterprises will be those who want to realize the true value of Mobility. They are rethinking their business processes.

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Comments: 1

  • Gopal Krishna

    Article captures on the field interactions with different enterprises. I find similar mobility perceptions when interacting with prospects/clients. Very well written, thank you for sharing your thoughts…………….



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