Do you have a centralized IT strategy? If so, do you also have a mobile strategy? How does mobile fit into your overall centralized IT strategy? These are important questions to answer. According to PwC’s 18th Annual Global CEO Survey, 81% of CEOs see mobile technologies as strategically important for their organization. In addition, 86% say that a clear vision of how digital technologies can create competitive advantage is key to the success of their investments. It’s great that most CEOs understand the importance of mobility. However, when it comes to the execution of mobile projects, app development becomes decentralized and fragmented. According to a report, 46% of CIOs say fragmentation is the reason why their mobile strategy lags behind. This can cause serious issues as a lack of a mobile strategy will lead to redundancy, inefficiency, uncontrolled costs, and even apps that fail. CIOs need to address the issue of fragmentation so that they don’t wind up overspending on enterprise apps that don’t even work.
So what can CIOs do? First, you need to look at all current mobile apps that have been deployed, all applications, technologies, and also the policies and procedures that are set in place for employees. Is your company ready for mobility initiatives? Is the infrastructure in place to handle mobile apps and the technologies that go along with them?
If the organization hasn’t deployed any mobile apps, then it would be a good idea to start by creating an enterprise mobile strategy. In the strategy, you’ll need to identify areas in the business where mobile could enhance processes. To do that, you’ll need to get some researchers to conduct user research, which helps uncover areas where processes could be made more efficient. Investing in research early will improve the success of your mobile app. When creating your strategy, make sure that your mobility and company goals are aligned. This will help you when it comes time to design and develop your mobile apps. By having aligned goals, the mobile agency will be able to create apps to help you reach your KPIs. Creating a mobile app isn’t as simple as you’d think especially if you want the app to transform your business processes.
If your company has mobile apps already, it would be a good idea for you to figure out the personas and how they are using mobile. For example, are warehouse managers using mobile apps to ensure that inventory levels are correct? Are you using mobile to make sure that all products have been inspected and are of high quality? Are these mobile apps designed so that they can actually enhance and improve work or do they just add more stress to workers? Also, is the user experience consistent throughout all apps and technology at the company? Creating a great user experience is key especially in getting your workers to adopt and actually use these mobile apps. Your apps need to be able to sync information to a central database and to your existing systems.
One important area to consider when aligning your mobile and IT strategies is the policies and procedures that will be used to govern these technologies and users. One way to govern these policies and procedures is by creating a Mobile Center of Excellence or MCoE. An MCoE can ensure consistency for all your mobile projects across your organization and tie everything back to your core business objectives.
Security is a huge issue and users need to understand how apps can be used so that data doesn’t accidentally get leaked out. Even if information does get leaked out, your company needs a plan in place to fix the issue quickly so that data won’t get into the wrong hands. To protect your company, you should apply enterprise mobile security best practices such as using multiple forms of authentication, creating separate, secure mobile gateways, and performing regular mobile security audits. In addition, you should use a mobile application management system (MAM) and a mobile device management (MDM) provider. What is the difference between a MAM and MDM? A mobile application management system or MAM helps companies control individual apps and user authentication. A mobile device management or MDM provider gives IT control over devices so if a mobile device is lost, it can be remotely wiped so that all private company data can be removed. Just having a MAM or MDM may not be enough though – you will need to integrate all your mobile devices into a centralized vulnerability management strategy. Taking these steps will help your company protect its data and lessen the impact of security breaches.
By including your mobile strategy into the company’s centralized IT strategy, you’ll be able to align your goals for mobility with your company’s overall goals. Want to learn more about creating a mobile strategy? Check out our guide below.