Mobile – Design for User Flexibility

Mobile is almost taken for granted nowadays. Most people, myself included, now feel pretty grumpy if you don’t have immediate access to the information that you seek, regardless of where you are. When mobile for business started, I carried around my own personal cell phone and a Blackberry provided by the Navy for work email and “official” calls. How far we have come! We are now at the point where no one wants to carry multiple similar devices, we want to have it all (personal and professional) on one device. Also, most CIOs have a dream – the employee and not the organization buys their device! Wrap this around organization specific apps (general and role based) and you have a wide variety of ways that (1) the employee may want to have information access delivered and (2) the CIO conundrum of how to deliver that information securely to the right individual on whatever platform the employee is using. I think the days of an organization procuring one specific device for professional business and providing them to every employee are over.

Figure4

Bottom line is that mobile use is now delivered over a wide, and ever increasing, range of devices and mediums. Organizations need to build in flexibility to address how the user wants to get the information and not via a strict organization regimen. Employees need to be fully involved in setting the requirements for IT system access, not wait for a static solution to be provided that may be out of date (and touch!) before it even hits the streets.

Global Defense & Intel Segment Leader

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