Building Lasting ConnectionsBy Samuel Greengard Print
Businesses must develop a focused strategy, provide highly usable apps and build a robust IT infrastructure in order to take full advantage of mobile technology.
Building Lasting Connections
Other companies are putting mobile technologies to work in innovative ways. Hotel chains—such as Hyatt and InterContinental—are using iPads for everything from checking in guests to providing concierge services.
Health care providers, such as RehabCare, use e-forms, questionnaires and visual aids on tablets to interact with patients. And other organizations, from real estate agencies to retailers, are using mobile devices in the field or in stores to display products, properties and more.
As organizations roll out mobile apps and tools, they find it necessary to build an IT infrastructure that supports the environment. Ernst & Young’s Nichols says that companies must find a way to shift development and IT resources to mobile tools—particularly the iOS and Android platforms—but continue to support the Web and traditional channels.
He adds that a cloud infrastructure can provide a solid foundation for mobile resources by boosting flexibility, scalability and agility. It can simplify data management and help an organization use resources more effectively.
CapGemini’s Alvarez says that IT executives must accept the fact that mobility is a critical element of any business strategy and that consumers now control content delivery. Best-practices organizations, he says, connect business objectives to app usability, IT infrastructure, security and governance.
“The most important thing to remember is that mobility is not a technology play; it’s a solution play that revolves around things like marketing, sales and support,” Alvarez says.
Aberdeen’s Borg adds that, in the end, a consumer-facing mobile initiative must wrap around an organization’s core competencies and value proposition. “This limits the universe of possibilities and features from the start,” he points out. “An application must deepen the relationship of a brand or service. “It isn’t about differentiating yourself for the sake of standing out. It isn’t a 'sky’s-the-limit’ proposition. It’s all about making things simpler and better for the customer. When mobility is done right, the company and the customer come out ahead.”
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