It took two years to sell a million iPods, 78 days for iPhones and 28 days
for iPads. Make no mistake, the way we work, play and love, will never be
The unprecedented connectivity, convenience and power, as well as the
added advantage of fun, is revolutionising the way information is delivered,
consumed, and responded to.
This convergence of information and mobile technology sets the stage for
business applications, transforming them into highly effective and valuable
solutions. There is no doubt that empowering employees and managers with
information to make decisions in real time accelerates the profitability of
business. But will it add value to HR? A lot will depend on the type and nature
of information and the decision it requires; is it strategic or operational?
Consider the humble leave request. A high volume, low value
operational workflow requiring, on the most part, a yes or no response. But
before you make that decision, you need up to date leave balances and
perhaps a Gantt view of who else is on leave during that time. A pretty
simple decision and a perfect candidate for a mobile application when all
the facts are presented.
Likewise, in the area of workforce management, workplaces that primarily
operate on timesheet based employees, the activities that involve planning,
scheduling, approving and monitoring are perfect contenders for mobile
technology. Applications will act as mobile clocks capturing the start and stop
times as well as ‘geotagging’ an employee’s location. Shift availability can also
be broadcast, allowing employees to respond and lock an approved shift
directly into the rosters. These kinds of operational requests and notifications
lend themselves to rapid decision making on the go.
Mobile technology is also one of the new frontiers for talent management.
Recruitment requests can be approved on the go and positions advertised as
well, offering smart phone-designed job portals with one click application for
candidates. Although very effective operationally, the real value lies in closing
the gap between the recruitment process and social media channels and giving
HR the finger on the pulse of the workforce, existing or prospective.
While it makes sense for managers and
employees to complete operational workflows from a
mobile device, trying to complete more strategic
actions like performance reviews or candidate
assessment is probably not a good idea. We need to
be conscious of over engineering the process and
losing the message in the medium. A successful
strategy embraces the benefits of mobile technology,
extending a personal channel facilitating engagement
and tapping into the real time conversations that are
happening on the web. In this regard it will be
another, but very effective, medium for HR to wield.
The promise of transforming a business into a
mobile enterprise is undeniable. Mobile technology
is fast turning organisations into enterprises with
highly productive workforces, streamlined
operations and satisfied employees and customers.
Organisations that embrace mobile Intelligence
will become leaner, faster, smarter decision-making
machines resulting in more business, more revenue,
and greater competitive advantage. But making the
leap from being a somewhat connected business to
a fully mobile enterprise requires you taking time to
determine your readiness to embrace new
technology, and the challenges that come with it.
– Ari Kopoulos, Employee Connect