When we engage clients about building an Enterprise Mobile Strategy (vs building apps), we start by identifying mobile use cases across the organization and across roles with the intent of compiling a list of potential apps to build. This approach allows us to evaluate and prioritize all the opportunities for mobile in a rational fashion to better leverage company resources.
It’s certainly an improvement over how decisions around mobile app projects are usually made—First-In, First-Out. But occasionally it still leads to “random acts of mobile.” Many enterprises have delivered fewer than 10 apps across the entire organization, deploying an app here or there for a given role.
But there’s often no holistic analysis of all the tasks that can—and should—be re-engineered and mobilized for a single user, nor which devices are most appropriate to target. Rarer still is the business that explores how it might mobilize business processes and tasks across devices.
Which seems odd until you consider that IT is being bombarded with messages from two disparate ecosystems: Microsoft and Apple.
On the one side, the Unified Windows Platform camp says we should build a single app that works on any device—so long as it runs Windows. That’s great from a conserving development effort perspective, but doesn’t at all focus on designing for the unique device capabilities or input methods. It’s most akin to a responsive design approach. Then again, if your company hasn’t adopted a mobile or wearables platform and is doing everything in its power to blur the lines between tablets and notebooks, there’s not much difference anyway.
On the other side is the Apple approach, which employs a jobs-to-be-done philosophy—each type of device offers its own set of attributes and is uniquely suited to performing certain tasks. As shown in the graphic below, these tasks can be correlated by completion time and input method.
In what is seemingly against their economic interests, Apple encourages users to adopt these lower priced, less powerful devices because they believe the future is in touch-based and voice-driven computing. And they are expending their R&D and product engineering dollars to develop and improve the underlying technologies that support that vision.
While obviously not the only approach, the following are some suggested ways to quickly identify the best approach for pursuing your Enterprise Mobile Strategy:
If you find you’re having trouble getting off the dime, give us a call and in just a few weeks we will help you create an actionable mobile strategy encompassing all of these elements.
Let’s get to work.
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