Mobile ROI? If You Don’t Know, Just Ask.

OpenMarket – June 10, 2014

A recent CIO Research Report revealed some interesting statistics around enterprise mobility:

  • 86% of businesses are failing to see the strategic value of mobility
  • 66% of CIOs say they think mobile is too complex
  • 72% of CIOS say it’s too costly to integrate mobile innovations into legacy applications

These were surprising numbers because we see many Global 2000 companies who are clearly benefiting from their strategies around mobile engagement.  Let’s take a look at how enterprise CIOs are beating the odds.

When exploring the strategic value of mobility, we should recognize that there is a general bias or notion that “mobile” means “mobile app.” If we look at the first statistic, then maybe this makes sense.  According to a survey of IT professionals, over half of the companies reported spending more than three months and $50,000+ developing an app.  Very nearly a quarter reported spending over $100,000 – and that’s before a single customer downloads it!  Now considering that only a small percentage of customers are going to download an app, it’s likely that CIOs would be concerned about the strategic value mobile.  At OpenMarket, we have seen first-hand many companies who spend about $50k over one year, but instead use text messaging to engage with all of their customers and employees via surveys, promotions and marketing, appointment reminders, customer service interactions, shipping notifications, and more.

There is something true to the claim that “mobile is just too complex,” and trying to boil the ocean of mobility is certainly a daunting task.  Almost every enterprise wishes it could and would take a strategic and holistic approach to mobile, but the reality is that just about every enterprise example we see begins with one use case.  Even the most mature companies who have deployed mobile across multiple business groups and are supporting dozens of use cases all started with solving for a single need.  What has made these companies successful with mobile is that they took the first step and started working with a trusted partner that could both share their domain knowledge and scale with them.

It’s hard to believe that CIOs claimed it was too costly to integrate mobile innovations. Building your own mobility solutions or re-architecting your systems would certainly be too costly and time consuming.  However, mobile technologists have spent significant resources creating API frameworks to help simplify integrations and reduce deployment time. This opinion also seemed like the most shortsighted one from CIOs.  I would pose these questions to the same survey respondents:

  • What is the cost of a system or network outage that could have been prevented by a text alert?
  • What is the cost of a data breach that could have been avoided by using SMS-based Two Factor Authentication?
  • What is the cost of a customer support call that could have been handled by mobile automation?

Many of the most respected and innovative enterprises are taking advantage of mobile and the benefits far outweigh the costs.

Ultimately when you consider that only 14% of the businesses surveyed for the report were currently using mobility solutions, it becomes a little easier to see how these numbers came to life. It’s hard to know the value, complexity or cost of something you don’t fully understand. Working with an experienced mobile partner is not only critical to your success, but it can also help you recognize the ROI of mobilizing your business.  We invite you to contact us to learn more.

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