We are still in the midst of the mobile revolution: according to IDC, the number of smartphones and tablets shipped worldwide will reach over 2 billion units by 2017. With this explosive growth, mobility presents a new set of challenges for organizations.
It also, however, presents a key opportunity to drive business transformation.
How are companies leveraging mobile technology to realize business benefits?
According to an IDC survey—“Creating Business Value from Mobile-First Development Practices”— which was sponsored by Kony, Inc., companies that make strategic investments in mobility are achieving significantly more meaningful business results than those that do not.
According to the survey, an enterprise-led strategy that aligns with key stakeholders drives a range of benefits—including increased sales, better brand awareness, competitive advantage, and decreased costs.
However, only 16% of the responding companies have an enterprise-led mobile strategy.
"To capitalize on mobile opportunities, organizations need a mobile-led strategy with support from the top," said Stacy Crook, Research Director, Mobile Enterprise Software IDC. "Modern mobile app design asks for a fast and flexible model that engenders communication across the key stakeholders in the organization. By creating a cross-functional mobile center of excellence within their organization, enterprises are best positioned to build a cohesive strategy that marries line of business wishes to IT requirements."
Strategy is Better
Companies that make enterprise-led strategic investments in mobility are realizing significantly higher levels of meaningful business benefits than those that have just business unit-led or departmental-led mobile approach.
Only 16% of companies take a clear, enterprise-led approach to mobility. However, 93% rated their success with mobile deployments higher than companies with a business unit-led or departmental-led approach.
Nearly 50% of organizations using a mobile solution named the following benefits as critical for impacting their business: smarter, faster decision making; improved organizational efficiency; cost savings; better customer interaction; and increased revenue.
Forty-one percent of companies have an ongoing enterprise-wide mobile budget. These companies have the highest allowance for mobile budget, which tends to provide for strategic investments in mobile staff or to augment that staff with outside support.
Thirty-one percent of companies have a comprehensive mobile technical staff augmented with external support and another 30% have a mobile development/architect group.
Almost 40% of respondents cite security and compliance issues as a challenge—the most of any other response choice.
"With the number of mobile apps downloaded from app stores expected to increase by a 32% CAGR by 2017, enterprises are realizing that a mobile strategy is no longer a nice-to-have but a must have," said Thomas E. Hogan, chief executive officer, Kony Inc. "But bringing the goals of IT and the business into proper alignment is difficult when it comes to a mobile strategy. The results of the survey are further proof that those organizations that practice a mobile-first business model will improve business performance while engaging customers, business partners and employees in new ways. Developing a clear mobile strategy is not something enterprises can ignore any longer."