The enterprise applications landscape is changing, forcing software developers to transform the solutions they provide businesses. For the most part, vendors have accepted and adopted these new requirements, offering companies of all sizes the products they need in today's constantly evolving IT environment. On the other side of the equation, however, corporate decision-makers have been slow to act, which is creating unnecessary gaps between what is expected and what is considered necessary.
The mobile revolution has had a major role in this conversation. Although many executives understand that bring your own device and the rest of the enterprise mobility movement will play an integral role in how companies operate in the future, many decision-makers have yet to come to grips with the fact that these platforms will be personal gadgets. This was highlighted in the latest AIIM Trendscape report, which encouraged organizations to look at their current and prospective challenges, rather than building a mobile strategy from the starting gate. First, analysts said, organizations must understand where they intend to go.
John Mancini, president of AIIM, said mobility is a major priority for most businesses. Unfortunately, many companies encounter difficulties when trying to find secure software or deploy robust strategies that will keep operations flowing without unnecessary disruptions. Despite these concerns and challenges, however, it is critical that organizations enter into mobile endeavors, as failing to do so will only make it more difficult for those companies to survive in the long run.
"Any organization that is still debating the criticality of mobile is missing the point, and organizations that do not respond do so at their long-term peril," Mancini asserted. "The time for debating whether and how mobile technologies will impact organizations and how their customers and constituents interact with them is over. It is time to act."
Building a mobile initiative
The software aspect is one of the biggest hurdles when companies are developing mobile endeavors. AIIM encouraged developers to think about user experience. In the past, individuals were generally tolerant of somewhat sticky and inconsistent solutions, as the mobile environment was considered new territory for most organizations. Today, however, if companies launch applications that do not cater to the on-demand requirements of the workplace, the reception will not be smooth.
AIIM also encouraged enterprises to rethink how they control information. Conventional nine-to-five work days are quickly becoming extinct and being replaced by more flexible options. This means that organizations cannot place the same parameters on mobile software, which should now be able to be accessed at any time.
In addition to considering user experience and information management, organizations must also rethink the security equation. Today, securing applications is much more difficult than it used to be, as those tools can be used virtually anywhere, including over public Wi-Fi and other insecure connections. If developers have not taken these new factors into account, they risk producing solutions that can compromise the integrity of sensitive information and introduce unnecessary risk into confidential corporate environments. This is one of the biggest challenges facing the mobile application landscape, as incorporating data protection is often overlooked.
As the mobile movement continues to influence business operations on multiple levels, decision-makers need to work with internal and external software developers to ensure companies procure and deploy robust and functional tools that do not undermine cybersecurity programs. If executives plan ahead and understand what they need and where their intentions will take their teams in the future, they may be able to build mobile initiatives that work well for their businesses.