Reading a statistic from an Evans Data report, a survey showed that 73% of major enterprises were already in development or planning to develop mobile applications that extend the reach of their current enterprise software set (called “companion applications”, they offer an additional access path to a given enterprise application by exposing certain functionality within an application running on a mobile device or tablet). The focus was of the survey was “Extending enterprise applications to mobile devices is increasingly becoming a priority for organizations optimizing their workforce.”
Enterprises are coming around to a concept that has existed for the past two years or so and that is “Bring your own device to work” or BYOD. An article in Fortune detailed that CIOs are waking up to the fact that “the consumerization of IT means that new innovations hit the consumer sphere first before entering the enterprise. A good example is the iPad, the tablet reinvented by Apple. Despite being aimed squarely at consumers, the iPad has in just a few months already won enterprise fans such as Mercedes-Benz. BYOD is a natural extension that first started with pagers and cellphones for IT on-call support and moved on to giving employees the ability to VPN into the corporate network from home and that is the increasingly “always connected” nature of business today. Whether you fall on the positive side that always connected allows employees a safety net to deal with pressing issues that occur outside the 9-5 window or the negative which is that time away from work should be respected, it is a issue that is here to stay and IT is looking to support it by making plans to extend those enterprise applications most in demand by their corporate workforce.