Smartphones and tablets have been on the market since 2008 and there are a tremendous number of consumer apps, but enterprise mobile apps are still lagging far behind. Why?
To date, many organisations have been more focused on how to lock down mobile devices, whereas the next evolution will be in unlocking the productivity of a mobile workforce. Most enterprises, even larger ones, have only deployed a handful of mobile apps, such as mobile CRM or a mobile website for customers. Because of this, five years after the ‘consumerisation of IT’ became a trend, employees are continuing to bring consumer mobile apps into the enterprise, because IT has yet to provide them with functional, secure, business-focused apps.
The key hurdle has been getting vital enterprise content to the devices, without increasing data security issues. Without this capability, the apps are limited, and enterprise teams are reluctant to build something that won’t provide strong ROI. There are three areas that need to be resolved before enterprise apps truly saturate the market.
Enterprise data is a critical part of the day-to-day work of employees at large corporations and organisations, but very few technologies have addressed the ability to get that content out of corporate servers and onto mobile devices so that employees can get real work done, wherever.
Content and information is the lifeblood of most enterprises, and without proper security, they’ll never allow the data to leave corporate servers. Apps need to focus not on securing the device, which likely isn’t even owned by the enterprise, but on ensuring that employees can access, view, edit and share data, securely.
When users are bouncing between devices, they don’t have the time or desire to learn different interfaces – they want a seamless experience that they only have to learn once.
> See also: Mobile apps:a matter of life and death?
The biggest validation that enterprise apps are slowly but surely coming to the forefront of development is the partnership between Apple and IBM. The planned solutions and apps these two leaders are going to create is validation that enterprise mobility will be a high priority initiative for major organisations over the next decade.
Mobility offers the promise to transform how businesses and employees work, allowing companies to achieve new levels of efficiency. This means they need to provide employees with the right tools and access to data when and where they need them. Delivering this kind of seamless experience can only be achieved when there is a tight collaboration between business apps and mobile devices.