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Talk about peer pressure.

A recent survey commissioned by Red Hat showed that 90% of companies planned to increase their investment in mobile application development in the next 12 months. The survey was conducted by a research firm and included 200 companies in the United States and Western Europe, so some of the respondents could be your competitors.

Even more revealing, however, is the comparison of 2015 numbers to a survey conducted two years earlier of 100 companies by FeedHenry, which now is owned by Red Hat. The 2013 survey indicated that 7% of companies with more than 1,000 employees claimed to have a fully implemented mobile app strategy. In the recent survey, 52% said their app strategy was mature.

That’s a difference of nearly 650% in just two years, which shows that companies are recognizing the power (and the prevalence) of mobile. All of this begs a question: Can you afford to be in the 10% of companies that aren’t increasing mobile app development?

If you’re still not convinced, here are three reasons why you should increase your investment in mobile app development.

1. Provide better, faster service. When was the last time you willingly called a customer service number when you knew the information you needed was on the company’s website or its mobile app? The web and mobile apps have made us all savvy consumers who are accustomed to finding what we need on our own. Your employees and/or your customers are no different. Jeff, your top sales guy, may need time to adjust to this new norm, but you should provide a familiar way for employees and customers to interact with the company.

2. Give 24/7 results. How often do you think of something you need to buy at a time when you can’t complete the task? It happens to me all the time, and I don’t think I’m alone. A mobile app lets your customers and your employees complete tasks on their timetable. Consider this a corollary of the first tip.

3. Capture critical data. I don’t mean to harp on Jeff the sales guy, but many sales people aren’t very conscientious with the detail work that goes into a sale. If you have a customer relationship management (CRM) system, does Jeff religiously input the relevant contact information for the prospect? What products/services is the prospect interested in? When was the last contact and what was its result? A mobile app can let a prospect take the sales journey at his/her own pace and provide you with actionable information along the way. Your prospects already are researching your company from afar, so you should give them a way to interact directly with you.

Other interesting tidbits from the Red Hat survey:

  • One-third of companies say that apps are being used to automate existing processes. Another one-third say that mobile is changing the way they do business.
  • 37% of respondent companies have Mobile Centers of Excellence to create apps in a deliberate, repeatable manner. It also shows the growing maturity of enterprise mobile.
  • 85% say that open source software is important to their company’s app development strategy.
  • Mobile backend as a service (MBaaS) also is growing in popularity. Nearly one-third say they are currently using MBaaS, a figure that’s expected to grow 16% in the next two years.

I know that your mom frowned on peer pressure, and in most cases she’s still right. But enterprise mobile has moved well beyond a trend and into the mainstream for most companies. Many of your competitors are already leveraging the power of mobile to engage customers and workers.

Can you afford to do anything less?

By Ramesh Maturu February 2, 2016
Tags: EnterpriseMobile