Enterprise mobility strategies have the potential to fuel operational efficiency. However, bring your own device and other elements of the mobility movement, including cloud computing and social media, fuel data and IT complexity. Business process management software has the ability to provide the foundation upon which companies can build a successful mobile platform that delivers on all of its operational promises.
The flexibility offered by smartphone and tablet use in the workplace, particularly as part of BYOD strategy, is considerable. A recent iPass study found that the average mobile employee adds up to 20 hours to the work week, as personal smartphones and tablets allows workers to get the job done even when they're away from the office. Furthermore, many participants in the survey explained that they are never completely disconnected from work, but instead stay attached to the office in some way through work email and other applications available on their personal mobile devices.
The survey also found that approximately 18 percent of enterprise employees are paying for their mobile plans on their own, a 6 percent year-over-year increase compared to the same study performed in 2011. The payment landscape in which workers spend their own money on their own devices and then use them for work is creating a greater sense of independence among the workforce as a whole. Because of this, more individuals are willing to work around the policies created by IT and find what they think works best and use that instead. This adds another level of complexity to mobile management.
How employees use their phones to connect to the network is also changing, as the study found workers can connect to the internet through Wi-Fi approximately 60 percent of the time, whether they are using the company wireless network or a public access point. This trend is growing quickly and the point when most enterprise employees will have Wi-Fi access 100 percent of the time is coming in just a few years.
BPM, while not aimed at providing the IT infrastructure to support the changing mobile environment or at managing devices, provides an integral solution in the growing movement. The technology provides the necessary foundation that connects data and application resources from cloud, mobile and social channels, automating repeatable processes and allowing employees to make the most of the technology they have, rather than get bogged down in the complexity of the available solutions.
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