This is part three of a four part post about mobile first and its growing importance in enterprise mobility.
**Getting to mobile-first**
Typically, there are three main audiences that require consideration from a mobility perspective; marketing, enterprise and partners. In all cases, making life easier for the end user should be the main objective. In doing so, companies who embrace a mobile-first approach will benefit from more engaged users, higher sales, better margins, lower overall costs, reduced levels of admin, enhanced workforce management, all of which can provide the company with a competitive advantage. Mobile app solutions should be broken down by user needs, business objectives, focus of the project and the environment they will be used in.
To help discover where the main opportunities for mobile are, it is important to look at current processes, to see where improvements can be made. This might include speaking to mobile savvy employees to understand where the pain points or opportunities are. If they are using it in their daily lives, they may well already be using third party tools for work purposes. They will understand where the gaps are and be able to explain why they are using certain tools already.
Additionally, when exploring opportunities in mobile, it’s vital that firms look at other industries, not just competitors for ideas. One way of doing this is to work with firms that have experience in building mobile apps.
The mobile-first approach has the benefit of empowering employees that previously may never have been supported by IT. Combined with developing for smaller screen sizes, this is part of the reason why designing the user experience is so important. Everything needs to be planned thoroughly, with company wide guidelines in place, to help with roadmaps and future proofing. In many organisations, some of the top complaints will be centred around enterprise software that employees find hard to use.
The user experience is key to success. Many IT projects fail to deliver on their potential, or even get off the ground, because the user experience falls short of expectations. With mobile, the reduced screen size means that the way that users interact with apps has to be intuitive. If it takes significantly longer to enter information on mobile, than it does on paper and then on a computer, projects may as well be canned.
One common complaint about enterprise software is that it requires training to use. With mobile apps, users will expect similar experiences to what they are used to with consumer apps. This means apps need to be easy-to-use, with an intuitive UI, that requires minimal training for employees. Not only does this cut down on the amount of time that can be wasted on training, but will also encourage users to use it, because it’s easy.
By Robert Haslam, PR manager