Servando Varelais the Program Director for ECM Mobile Applications and has over 15 yearsof experience working in the Enterprise Content Management industry. Servando first startedin 2000, where he worked in the FileNet R&D group for the FileNet P8 platform. In 2008, hestarted working in the IBM ECM Product Management team. In his current role, ProgramDirector, Marketing and Strategy for ECM Mobile Applications, Servando manages the ECMMobile offerings, as ECM Mobile became a stronger imperative for IBM and IBM's customers.Servando has an MBA from Pepperdine University, and a B.S. degree in Computer Scienceand Engineering from California State University Long Beach.
In the industry today, "App" is a shortening of the term "Application Software". It is the de factostandard term used to describe mobile software. The word become popular after the 2008release of the iTunes App Store, Apple's purchasing and installation mechanism for iOS.Google followed shortly after by the Google Play Store.
Mobile apps have an implied simplicity due to the constraints of mobile devices, namelyreduced screen real estate, limited battery life, constrained input methods, and unreliableconnectivity.
To be successful, mobile apps must aid the normal mobile device user ("normobs") in dealingwith mobile device constraints. This focus on user experience (UX) gave way to a revolution insoftware design. Normal mobile users care more about convenience and eas of use thanchecklists of software features.
The mobile strategy for IBM ECM is threefold:
- First, the strategy is to provide apps for the key offerings that fully complement the core solutions. For example, IBM provides a Case Manager Mobile application that works in tandem with the IBM Case Manager product and complements the desktop experience. It does not replace the desktop experience. It is similar to how business people use email today; we have a desktop where we can sit and write complicated emails, attach documents and do that with great ease when we are at our desk. However, we can also be mobile and read email, monitor for important emails we are expecting, and even respond to email if necessary. This requires that our mobile apps be highly targeted and the UX be specially focused on the intended use of the app. For example, if it is a Case Management app, then the app should be totally focused on that function and we should not cram other non-case management related functionality into the app.
- Secondly, the IBM ECM mobile strategy requires that IBM deliver the best possible mobile experience for the normobs and this usually translates into delivering fully native applications for the most relevant mobile operating systems, which today are iOS and Android. This way iOS or Android normobs will easily adapt to any of the IBM ECM mobile apps, because the controls will feel second nature to them and the adoption of the app will be frictionless.
- Lastly, the strategy calls for delivery reusable and extensible libraries that customers, business partners, and any mobile developer can use to easily integrate the IBM ECM mobile functionality into their own custom applications. Delivering this type of value is key for offerings where IBM customers have requirements to produce bespoke mobile apps.
IBM ECM has three mobile offerings that complement the key parts of the ECM portfolio, andthese are:
- IBM Navigator Mobile: the UX for this app is primarily around providing users easy access to their content that is stored in the FileNet Content Management system. This app is currently available for iOS. It includes the ability to browse, view, search, retrieve, add, delete, and edit content that is stored in the repository. This app also provides the ability to view and add comments to documents, participate in Teamspaces, and offline access to documents. This app integrates with IBM Content Navigator.
- IBM Case Manager Mobile: the UX for this app is primarily focused around the Case Manager case worker who needs to have access to case information while on the road and needs to be able to update and complete tasks. Much of the functionality in this app is centered around case work task execution and it includes a mapping capabilities so that case works can see where their tasks lie on the map relative to their current position. This app integrates with the IBM Case Manager server and any solution designed in IBM Case Manager can be leveraged by this mobile app.
- IBM Datacap Mobile: the UX for this app is primarily centered around capturing or imaging documents using mobile devices. This app includes advanced imaging capabilities, such as automatic edge detection, auto capturing of images, the ability to add metadata to documents for easier indexing, on-device object character recognition (the ability to auto ready text), on-device barcode decoding (to populate data fields automatically), and it integrates with the IBM Datacap server. Any solution defined in IBM Datacap can be leveraged by the mobile app.
It is worthwhile noting that the current state of these apps is not their final state. IBMcontinues to enhance these apps and continues
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