Call us free (AU) 1800 462 388

Mobile business: How enterprises are using mobile software

There’s a lot of buzz right now about mobile business.  Today we have the chance to ask Rhianna Collier, Director of the SIIA Software Division, a few questions about how enterprises are using mobile technologies and where it’s all heading.

1. Let’s start with the basics. What is mobile business?  Can you paint a picture for us of what it means for people within a company: how does it affect their day-to-day lives?

Mobile business today is the ability to carry out all aspects of your business regardless of your location.  Individuals have access to all needed services and information via a mobile device, whether it be email, CRM, workflow management, online collaboration, or even financial transactions, just to name a few.  As a remote worker myself, it is imperative that I have access to the necessary applications 24/7. It allows me to be in constant touch with our members and ultimately better serve their needs.

2. To what extent are companies taking advantage of the possibilities offered by “anywhere, anytime” access to business applications and services?  How fast is it growing?

We see more and more companies supporting increased mobile device usage with business applications. Most companies have some type of mobile based business accessibility today. We are seeing the depth and bread of services available expand within the enterprise and will continue to expand.  Mobile Office is still probably the most commonly used mobile business application suite. With IT departments now being able to customize mobile devices to run their business/industry specific software I believe we will see mobile business increasing at a faster rate than we have ever seen.

3. What do you think is driving this uptake of mobile business?

The growing virtualized workforce who travel and work from home is a prominent driver in the adoption of mobile business. Having all of your business applications on your smartphone allows employees to maintain business while not in their primary workspace. The flexibility of having business access on mobile devices increases user productivity and customer contact and satisfaction (because you are readily available to your customer base). As more and more enterprises are mobilizing their workforces it has become a critical component to staying competitive in the industry.  A secondary trend that will accelerate uptake is the native adoption of mobile as the platform of choice among students and new entrants into the workforce.

4. What are some of the concerns and challenges facing ISVs when selling mobile business applications to enterprises?  How can they overcome these?

The biggest ongoing concern from the enterprise perspective is security. Any cloud or mobile application is still seen as a giant security risk for enterprise IT. There is a fear of data leaks, what if the mobile devices are stolen or lost? There is also user misuse of the device.  A lot of the security concerns could be alleviated within the enterprise themselves by governance and employee training; policy development, enforcing things like device timeouts, using passcodes, and device locking. ISVs selling mobile business applications to the enterprises need to understand the security concerns of enterprise IT and make sure the implementation and integration processes are seamless.

5. And lastly, what sort of impact is mobile business having on the performance of companies that embrace it? Are they seeing a clear ROI from investing in mobile applications?

Mobile business improves communication within a company and allows for real-time access to information.  Anytime, anywhere increases profitability by allowing real-time business decisions. Mobile business reduces costs, boosts user productivity, and increases customer service, which, ultimately, leads to profit.  That in itself is clear ROI for the movement towards mobile business adoption.


The Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA) is hosting a major ISV conference, All About Mobile, in San Jose on November 16-17.

SIIA All About Mobile 2010

WIN A FREE PASS: Here at Software Shortlist, we have one (1) complimentary pass to the conference to give away. For you chance to win, leave a comment below (or send us an email) and share some of your thoughts about how mobile applications will change the way we do business.  The comment we consider most interesting and insightful will win its author a free pass.