Seizing the Moment with Mobility
By Divya Malik on Jun 14, 2012
Empowering people to work where they want to work is becoming more critical now with the consumerisation of technology. Employees are bringing their own devices to the workplace and expecting to be productive wherever they are. Sales people welcome the ability to run their critical business applications where they can be most effective which is typically on the road and when they are still with the customer.
Oracle has invested many years of research in understanding customer's Mobile requirements. “The keys to building the best user experience were building in a lot of flexibility in ways to support sales, and being useful,” said Arin Bhowmick, Director, CRM, for the Applications UX team. “We did that by talking to and analyzing the needs of a lot of people in different roles.”
The team studied real-life sales teams. “We wanted to study salespeople in context with their work,” Bhowmick said. “We studied all user types in the CRM world because we wanted to build a user interface and user experience that would cater to sales representatives, marketing managers, sales managers, and more. Not only did we do studies in our labs, but also we did studies in the field and in mobile environments because salespeople are always on the go.”
Here is a recent post from Hernan Capdevila, Vice President, Oracle Fusion Apps which was featured on the Oracle Applications Blog.
Mobile devices are forcing a paradigm shift in the workplace – they’re changing the way businesses can do business and the type of cultures they can nurture. As our customers talk about their mobile needs, we hear them saying they want instant-on access to enterprise data so workers can be more effective at their jobs anywhere, anytime. They also are interested in being more cost effective from an IT point of view.
The mobile revolution – with the idea of BYOD (bring your own device) – has added an interesting dynamic because previously IT was driving the employee device strategy and ecosystem. That's been turned on its head with the consumerization of IT. Now employees are figuring out how to use their personal devices for work purposes and IT has to figure out how to adapt.
Blurring the Lines between Work and Personal Life
My vision of where businesses will be five years from now is that our work lives and personal lives will be more interwoven together. In turn, enterprises will have to determine how to make employees’ work lives fit more into the fabric of their personal lives. And personal devices like smartphones are going to drive significant business value because they let us accomplish things very incrementally. I can be sitting on a train or in a taxi and be productive. At the end of any meeting, I can capture ideas and tasks or follow up with people in real time. Mobile devices enable this notion of seizing the moment – capitalizing on opportunities that might otherwise have slipped away because we're not connected.
For the industry shapers out there, this is game changing. The lean and agile workforce is definitely the future. This notion of the board sitting down with the executive team to lay out strategic objectives for a three- to five-year plan, bringing in HR to determine how they're going to staff the strategic activities, kicking off the execution, and then revisiting the plan in three to five years to create another three- to five-year plan is yesterday's model.
Businesses that continue to approach innovating in that way are in the dinosaur age. Today it's about incremental planning and incremental execution, which requires a lot of cohesion and synthesis within the workforce. There needs to be this interweaving notion within the workforce about how ideas cascade down, how people engage, how they stay connected, and how insights are shared.
How to Survive and Thrive in Today’s Marketplace
The notion of Facebook isn’t new. We lived it pre-Internet days with America Online and Prodigy – Facebook is just the renaissance of these services in a more viral and pervasive way. And given the trajectory of the consumerization of IT with people bringing their personal tooling to work, the enterprise has no option but to adapt. The sooner that businesses realize this from a top-down point of view the sooner that they will be able to really drive significant innovation and adapt to the marketplace. There are a small number of companies right now (I think it's closer to 20% rather than 80%, but the number is expanding) that are able to really innovate in this incremental marketplace. So from a competitive point of view, there's no choice but to be social and stay connected.
By far the majority of users on Facebook and LinkedIn are mobile users – people on iPhones, smartphones, Android phones, and tablets. It's not the couch people, right? It's the on-the-go people – those people at the coffee shops. Usually when you're sitting at your desk on a big desktop computer, typically you have better things to do than to be on Facebook.
This is a topic I'm extremely passionate about because I think mobile devices are game changing. Mobility delivers significant value to businesses – it also brings dramatic simplification from a functional point of view and transforms our work life experience.
Vice President, Oracle Applications Development