Last week, in a meeting with many of our company’s practice leaders, consultant and sales team members, the topic of mobile came up. As a service offering that we currently provide, surfacing data to the mobile device has been a need from IT organizations desiring to further serve their users for years now. However, one of the questions in this meeting surrounded whether the industry is prepared to support both portability across platforms and scalability for the enterprise. Ultimately, does the user experience reside in the mobile browser or in a series of mobile applications that must be coded differently to suit each platform (Windows Mobile, iPhone, iPad, RIM/Blackberry etc.)? How efficient would that be?
Additionally, we discussed whether mobile computing and accessibility is really the largest challenge faced by the enterprise content management industry? Or, is it the largest “opportunity” faced by ECM? (“Challenge” and “Opportunity” can mean very different things).
I stumbled across an article that helps answer some of these questions as it declares that “Mobile is the Next Frontier for Enterprise Content Management.” It assesses what needs to happen in order for ECM to make a significant migration into the world of mobile in a usable way, including cloud computing and user experience.
Here are some key points made by the author, Aaron Levie:
- The winning solutions will be platform agnostic, catering to the heterogenity of devices in today’s and tomorrow’s organizations.
- Feature-bloated platforms that are tied to on-premise servers won’t translate well to a mobile environment, where users require a streamlined, digestible presentation of information that can be accessed in the fewest taps. This is a problem, but it’s also an incredible opportunity to rethink and redesign how content is presented and consumed.
- Mobile devices are also a huge driving force for cloud technologies, because they’re the device category that makes the cloud absolutely necessary.
- Mobility is the next great frontier for ECM, but it means that vendors will need to create more streamlined, simplified and user-friendly interfaces.
What do you think? What other considerations come into play before mobile devices can truly support the needs of users across an organization in managing and maintaining content?