Tuesday, August 17, 2010

How Do You Advise an Enterprise on Mobility?

I was asked the other day to put together a list of questions to send to a management team in advance of my visit.  They had asked me to help them develop an enterprise mobility strategy. 

This was an interesting task.  I had little knowledge of the scope of their ambitions, so I approached this challenge by creating a list of open ended questions that were designed to uncover their interests and their range of possible needs.  How would you prepare to discuss an infinite number of different mobility scenarios, business processes, IT infrastructures, ERPs and a plethora of mobile devices?   Were they going to describe a simple iPhone application or a solution as powerful as the SAP Workforce Scheduling And Optimization by Clicksoftware solution?

I think this is one of those tasks that benefits from trial and error.  Here is the list of 14 questions I prepared in advance.  What questions would you add to this list, or ask differently?
  1. What business processes are you considering mobilizing?
  2. What business units or departments are involved?  Is this a corporate project or departmental?
  3. What are your priorities for mobilizing business processes?  Which ones first, second, third?
  4. How many people will be using these mobile applications?
  5. What are the roles and responsibilities of the mobile users?
  6. What are the expected ROIs?
  7. What is the desired timeline?
  8. Do you have business process diagrams developed for these solutions?  If so, can we review prior to our meeting?
  9. What is your one to three year roadmap for enterprise mobility?
  10. What backend applications or ERPs are involved?
  11. What are your preferred integration strategies?
  12. Do you have existing mobile enterprise solutions?  If so, please describe.
  13. What are your mobile device or smartphone preferences?
  14. Do you want to buy an off the shelf mobile solution, develop one in-house, or contract for a custom mobile solution?
I look forward to your thoughts on how to improve this list.

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Kevin Benedict, SAP Mentor, SAP Top Contributor, Mobile and M2M Industry Analyst
Phone +1 208-991-4410
twitter @krbenedict

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Full Disclosure: I am an independent mobility consultant, mobility analyst, writer and Web 2.0 marketing professional. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.