A starters guide for implementing business mobility

Absoft solutions architect, Bjorn Harzer guides you through the initial steps to implementing business mobility. Read on to discover some expert tips or download the full white paper here

The first step is to define the business case by looking at how mobility can increase productivity, improve quality and compliance and add value.

The next step is to evaluate the mobile options that are available. The three, top level mobile applications formats are web applications, hybrid applications and native applications. A solution needs to be chosen or designed based on how users will be accessing apps, what IT infrastructure is available, what existing ERP systems are in place and how complex or specific functionality needs to be.

Hybrid apps are perhaps the most practical choice when considering that the lifecycle of business applications are considerably longer than those of mobile devices; the application needs to be portable to newer device types. This must be weighed up against the cost for a more generic app which looks and feels the same across all supported device types.

An understanding of user groups and their requirements is key to an effective mobile strategy. In Absoft’s experience there are three main user groups, each with their own requirements.

  • Expert users spend a lot of time in front of a desktop computer using ERP systems on a daily basis. In their case, all applications need to be organised in a natural and intuitive way to reflect their work domains in an equally accessible portal.
  • Occasional users touch ERP applications far less frequently and are often on the move or travelling. This user group mostly consists of supervisors or managers who only have to keep in touch when it comes to approvals or management reporting.
  • Last but not least is the onsite users group. They execute work on job sites or are perhaps not even attached to the organisation directly. Their need is to execute work tasks anywhere, anytime, even if there is no connection to the ERP system.

When it comes to design mobile applications must be suitable for the small screen size available on mobile devices; remember the golden rule that less is more and keep the design simple.

If you don’t have the internal skills and resources to see this process through find the right partner to help you implement a mobile solution that is cost effective, manageable and fit for purpose.