2012 Best In Mobilizing Business Applications

— November 09, 2012

Eaton Corporation

This global leader in electrical components, systems and services leveraged a mobile app to transform its sales process.

Eaton Corporation is a diversified world-wide power management company that provides, among other things, hydraulic products for various industries, including aerospace and automotive. In the past, Eaton’s sales reps and distributors would have to carry a number of hard copy product catalogs with them to sales meetings, some of which were almost 500 pages long.

During the meetings, selections would be made; then, the sales reps would go back to their offices, check for availability and begin the ordering process. With so much work involved, many reps could only take a handful of meetings a day and the entire sales process could take several days.

Eaton decided to transform its sales process through the creation of a mobile app. The first goal was to provide reps with the entire, current collection of catalogs and manuals — with all product (200,000+) information at their fingertips and up to date.

The app would also have to enable easy order entry and work under a true anytime/anywhere set of conditions. “The goal of the project was to take advantage of the emerging mobile technologies to reduce cycles in the sales process,” says Eric Stager, product manager, Web and Mobile Industrial Sector. “Eaton recognized widespread adoption of these technologies as an opportunity to improve speed to market capability and provide a higher level of service to our channel partners and end users.”

The company opted for tablet devices for their ability to display complex products and specs effectively and to provide a catalog feel on screen. Eaton introduced the initial prototype for its mobile app, running on an iPad, at its fall 2010 distributor meeting.

The feedback was immediate and positive. Eaton embarked on the next project phase — vendor selection. It selected AT&T and the Antenna Mobility Platform from Antenna Software, and then introduced the resulting PowerSource app the following year.

PowerSource is an interactive, multimedia iPad app built for the entire sales force and ecosystem of distributors. The app replaces 15 to 20, 500-page printed catalogs and allows easy access to product information in a clean and visually compelling way, using graphics, 3D modeling and video, to showcase the products.

It runs on the Antenna cloud, which enables accurate, current information. Little training was required, given the existing popularity of the iPad and the broad familiarity with the functionality of the device.

Now, customers can view and order products immediately, shortening sales and fulfillment from days or weeks to hours or minutes. Other benefits include a reduction in customer support call volume, elimination of printed catalogs and reduction in customer engagement time investment to achieve solutions. Eaton achieved ROI in the first six months through documented success stories from Eaton and distributor channels.


International SOS
A cross-device mobile app for this international healthcare,
medical assistance and security services company extends travel risk management capabilities directly into the hands of employees.

International SOS provides medical assistance, international healthcare, and security services to business travelers and expatriates. “For many years, we issued wallet-sized cards to our members, which provided a list of phone numbers that travelers could call in an emergency, from anywhere in the world,” says Kate Holden, senior vice president, information and tracking services for the company. Ten years ago, the company added an electronic card which continued to be the norm until 2011.

“Given that 80% of our end user customers have smartphones, we began to consider the range of service possibilities that putting an International SOS mobile app on those phones would bring to our members, as well as the benefits it could bring us in terms of delivering new service capabilities,” she continues.

With this in mind, the company rolled out Verivo Software’s enterprise mobility platform to build a cross-device mobile app for its members that quickly connects business travelers to the company’s extensive global response capabilities. The app features include a one-click dial for help, instant access to the latest location-specific travel alerts and real-time health and security advice. The app integrates with the company’s proprietary security and medical information systems and its global alarm center network.

“Business travelers and expatriates have been quick to adopt the app,” explains Holden. “Ease of use and immediate access to our worldwide capabilities are just two of the many benefits it brings. The ability to make a call still remains the most effective way for our end users. It is important that, no matter where they are in the world, members are able to reach our operators, who can provide expertise and assistance in the event of an issue.”


Baker Hughes
Managing the scheduling and dispatching of over 50,000 pumping jobs annually through a mobile app has resulted in significant ROI for this oilfield services company.

In the extremely competitive oilfield pressure pumping industry, the fastest responding supplier often gets the business. Prior to the introduction of the PowerView mobile app, sales and operations teams at Baker Hughes would need to interrogate the PowerView system in the office to gather information on equipment availability schedules.

The teams would then call the district dispatch office to find out if equipment would be available. However, as these conversations were taking place, other sales team members might already be booking the same equipment for other customers. Conversely, if jobs were cancelled at the last minute, high-cost equipment would end up sitting in the parking lots, rather than generating revenue.

The company wanted to mobilize its job scheduling process to provide real-time information to users. Working with AT&T and Sprint, and using BlackBerry devices, Baker Hughes created the PowerView mobile app to manage the scheduling and dispatching of over 50,000 oilfield pumping jobs annually.

The app provides a calendar-based view of jobs for a selected area/product line, with the ability to drill down for additional details. From the mobile calendar, users can schedule, reschedule, turn down or cancel jobs and the app automatically updates the master schedule and generates notifications to users. Users may then reallocate equipment and personnel as needed.

As a result of the mobile app, the time to schedule a job has improved 222%. Baker Hughes achieved ROI three times over in the first month as a result of being able to quickly reallocate equipment that would otherwise have failed to generate revenue.


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