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Go Ahead, Make Your Competitors’ Day

…Ignore Mobility as a Tool

The ability to make effective decisions in a shorter time frame is becoming vital to success, which is why organizations are increasingly adopting mobile tools that reduce “time-to-decision,” according to a recent study published by Aberdeen Group.

Not only are successful companies adopting mobile tools at higher rates, but they are also utilizing mobility across numerous operational processes:

Production

Today, mobile solutions enable manufacturing execs to give employees real-time visibility into plant operations and act on the information on a timely basis to minimize adverse events and failures. Incident reporting via personal devices can greatly improve response time, which is critical in an industrial environment. Moreover, mobility can be applied to functions such as line alerts, inventory checks, recording time and attendance, leave requests and shift planning.

Maintenance/Field Service

With mobile devices, field workers can store inspection data in the system automatically, access pending work orders, track repairs and perform other critical tasks that traditionally required employees to go back and forth from work stations.

Supply Chain

Mobility is making an enormous impact on supply chains. For shipping, it enables the capture of the transaction remotely at the point of occurrence. (Think UPS scanning an item at your doorstep for real-time delivery stats and notification to the sending party of arrival and receipt.) On the planning side, the ability to receive mobile alerts can dramatically improve supply chain performance by empowering the planning team to address problems at the earliest possible point. Time is money in the supply chain, and eliminating latency of decision making results in less inventory and reduced costs.

Sales Operations and Procurement

Mobility has dramatically improved efficiency in contract management by cutting approval cycle times, which translates to tangible savings over time. For sales operations, mobility can help improve documentation and data accuracy. With intelligent mobile tools, one can quickly document a meeting with a check-in and get a one-minute-documentation card recording notes via speech to text. Mobile apps in CRM packages are time savers, too. The app can ask a sales rep if the last call should be logged in the CRM. If “yes” is selected, the call detail is logged with no manual entry required and also offers voice to text notes for those road-warriors.

Retail

Most retail employees are desk-less workers. Mobile tools can connect these employees to corporate operations, which speeds up processes and increases productivity. Within retail stores, mobility also is playing a proactive role in sales enablement via location awareness solutions that leverage opt-in customers with smart phones by promoting incentives based on their location within the store. Mobility also is becoming vital for stock management at the point of display and points of sale, caring for frequent and accurate stock loss and accounting for real-time online buyers as well.

The key takeaway from the Aberdeen Group study is that companies can no longer sidestep process improvement and the performance that mobility provides. Organizations that connect every employee have much greater success with operational excellence initiatives. Indeed, best-in-class companies are 56 percent more likely than their peers to utilize mobile devices in their day-to-day operations, the study concludes.

Are you part of the advancing 56 percent group, or lagging behind in your mobility initiatives?

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