There are few emerging technologies that will change the enterprise more than mobility. If you are as old as I am (Check out my bio—you can see my gray hair), you remember that phones were tied to the wall or desk by wires.
Technology—and IT—Providing Service in a New Way
Thankfully, we’re no longer tethered to a 25-foot tangled cord coming out of the wall. Most experts agree that the following will become reality for mobility in a few years:
- People will be wearing their phone (or at least the viewing and communication portions) as part of their clothing or jewelry.
- The phone will pair with an external keyboard and monitor to eliminate the desktop computer.
- Storage of documents will centralize to the cloud, with only the most relevant and useful documents stored locally.
- Organizations and retailers that inhibit the use of the phone will be avoided in favor of more communication-friendly outlets.
This means that the consumerization of IT will accelerate, and product and service designs will reorient around the end user. The emergence of the individual consumer as the primary driver of design is commonly seen as a major industry shift, because large business and government organizations had dominated the early decades of computer usage and development. Now, there is the acknowledgement that individuals within an organization are customers of the services provided by IT and, therefore, need to be serviced like customers.
Mobile Platforms Easing the Burden of IT
Historically, companies have provided very “heavy” web applications to run on a desktop. These applications interface to database-driven applications in a three-tier architecture. A user would log into that system and only interface with that single application during that work session. The consumerization of IT is causing this strategy to evolve. Now, a mobile user will have applications on their phone that will deliver specific information in a secure manner. An environment such as TIBCO Silver Mobile, which manages the applications and users of those applications, is essential. By moving this management into the middleware layer of the organization, the user increases productivity and the enterprise increases security and profitability.
While the emergence of mobile platforms as enterprise computing tools is relatively new, the tidal wave is coming. Organizations that try to hide from this onrush will experience significant pain and frustration. Organizations that treat their employees as consumers will find dramatic benefits that could move the needle on productivity and profitability.
To learn more, read this report by Forrester about development and integration of mobile applications in the enterprise.