Just a quick glace around you is enough to gauge the exponential growth of the mobile market. The 2012 Business Insider-State of the Internet report states that in 2011, smart phones sales overtook PC sales and will very soon dwarf the latter. The Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) is now a well-established trend and employees are growing accustomed to using their own mobile computing devices in their jobs, and to access corporate assets. Gartner reports that 90 percent of enterprises today have already deployed mobile devices, with smartphones being most widely deployed. Obviously, there are huge benefits in mobile-enabling the employee. Changing the boundaries of old workplace patterns allows employees to gain increased face time with clients, decrease their commute time, gain greater control over their workloads and realize a more balanced lifestyle (work/life balance).Put together, I see these translate into increased employee productivity and satisfaction, as well as better revenue for the company along with higher employee retention. The BYOD initiative directly impacts profitability; for example a mobile-enabled employee is able to tap into the company's databases in order to cross-sell or up-sell. Mobile CRM and sales force automation can benefit the company with an improved deal close rate, increased deal size, reduced sales cycle and heightened customer intimacy, thus leading to overall improved revenue performance. Operational performance can be greatly improved with better supply chain efficiencies, further boosting the quality of field service and customer satisfaction.
Improved employee satisfaction is probably one of the biggest outcomes of the growing mobility trend. With his/her physical presence no longer required, and tools such as mobile video conferencing, mobile business applications like ERP, and apps for travel and expense, payroll, leave, and learning management, the employee's responsiveness and decision making abilities can be vastly improved. A research report from Forrester shows that the mobile-enablement of employees leads to 75% improvement in worker productivity, 65% improvement in employee responsiveness, and 48% improvement in customer issue resolution, leading to an increase of 42% in customer satisfaction. Customer satisfaction is the other big benefit area—with reduced cycle times and the increased speed of response from a remote or always accessible employee, the company has the ability to successfully differentiate itself for competitive advantage.
It is estimated that by 2016, there will be 1.4 mobile devices per capita. I believe that this explosive growth in mobility presents companies with both enormous opportunities and challenges. A BYOD initiative requires enterprises to make decisions among many interdependent tradeoffs to ensure a secure deployment. This will pave the way for the next wave of increased revenues, higher productivity, improved operational efficiency and most importantly, satisfied employees.