An Accenture report on the impact of mobility on enterprises has found that CIOs worldwide are viewing mobility as a source of revenue.
In The Accenture 2013 CIO Mobility Survey, 79 per cent of respondents cited mobility as a revenue generator and said it would significantly improve customer interactions (84 percent) as well as significantly affect their business (83 percent).
Accenture conducted the global survey of CIOs and other C-suite IT professionals to understand if companies are embracing the importance of mobility and to identify the top priorities of IT professionals, and the obstacles to achieving them.
From December 2012 to January this year Accenture conducted the survey with 413 IT professionals (CIOs, CTOs, Directors of Technology or IT, and Chief Mobility Officers) across 14 industries in 14 countries
Regarding specific mobile capabilities, survey respondents indicated that improving field and customer service with instant data access, capture and processing topped the list of needs (43 percent), followed by engaging customers via mobile devices (36 percent), especially with transactions on mobile devices (34 percent). Twenty-nine percent of all respondents said they plan to design, develop and/or distribute connected devices to support B2B applications.
"It's encouraging that companies are embracing the importance of mobility but they need to go further by identifying the top areas for mobile deployment," said Jin Lee, senior managing director, Accenture Mobility. "In particular they should look at areas that will grow, such as connected devices, and conduct a 'gap analysis' to determine how to catch up, or even better, get ahead of the curve. Other critical considerations include investments, budget allocation, re-training staff, hiring mobile expertise, and leveraging external experts to help develop or implement mobility strategies."
Meanwhile, China (50 percent), Italy (47 percent) and Brazil (37 percent) lead the way globally with extensively-developed mobile strategies. Despite varied progress in strategy development, half (50 percent) of the companies surveyed said they would identify prioritised mobility initiatives over the next year, an increase over last year (41 percent). Nearly all said their mobile strategies must support smartphones (85 percent) and tablets (78 percent), a nod to the increase in employees' use of their own tablets for work, and companies' deployment of tablets as work devices.
Fifty-two percent of companies said they will retrain existing staff to enable their mobile strategies, and 37 percent will hire full-time mobile expertise into their organisation, indicating a high demand in the market for mobility talent. The survey also found that more projects are being staffed internally (76 percent in 2013, versus 63 percent in 2012) to support the development of mobile applications.
"CIOs must find ways to support the myriad of mobile devices entering the work environment," Lee said. "They should also address the need to focus intensely on people and expertise. Almost twice as many companies - 40 percent in 2013, versus 27 percent in 2012 - plan to leverage external experts to develop and refine their strategy, indicating that mobile usage is growing faster than the market can provide in terms of skilled and available talent."
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