Take a process in your organisation and the application that supports it. If you and the organisation call that process simple, if you call it dull, if it is a commodity and essential, then the question has to be: why not put that application into the cloud for mobile access and usage?
All of us, no matter our role have to carry out simple tasks in order to complete the bigger more important business critical roles that enable the organisation to differentiate itself. Tasks such as filing expenses, booking conference rooms or requesting facilities or HR processes like holiday calendaring are trapped into a desktop PC environment. Across the full spectrum of vertical markets this scenario exists. It is a legacy from the intranet and portal waves that shaped enterprise IT in the last years of the previous century.
The affect of this on the business is that it is draining away one of the most valuable resources your organisation has – time. Many of these dull, essential commodity tasks are not in themselves particularly time consuming, but add them together in the course of a day, week, month of financial quarter and they are their sapping at the reservoir of employee time like light bulb left burning all night when there is no one in the office.
Look at it from a different perspective think about the time drainage that your workforce has to endure anyway as a result of modern life. Waiting for attendees to join a conference call, queues in the sandwich shop, utility firms digging up the high street yet again this month and delaying the bus. Ask most, probably all, members of your organisation if they would utilise this “down time” more effectively if the tools were available to them on their iPhones and tablet devices and I predict the answer would be a resounding yes. They would say yes because when they are at their workplace or with a client or supplier they want that time to be productive. And productive, to a motivated workplace means working on the projects that make a difference, not booking a meeting room.
Email is the application most CIOs have pushed onto the mobile platforms and rightly so, personally I see it as a personal boon. Social networks and their widespread adoption by the workforce and your future workforce have reinforced the importance of face-to-face business.
As a CIO your role is to improve the organisation. Improving the workflow of commodity business processes by releasing them from the desktop will increase organisational efficiency and therefore the lives of your employees. After all these same individuals are doing just that in their own lives with mobile devices and apps to book rail travel, network with friends, share information, locate places on maps and buy products and services.