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The growing popularity of mobile apps, solutions and sites has put a lot of pressure on IT professionals – both internal teams and IT consulting firms. That pressure is compounded by the increasing demands of consumers, employees and every type of technology users who want to use their personal devices at work, on the road and at home. Buzzwords like Bring Your Own Device (BYOD), Bring Your Own Technology (BYOT), and Bring Your Own Phone (BYOP) are heard in every corporate conference room, as business struggle to sustain the rapid growth and change demanded by today’s technology innovations. Business technology tools, sites and software must be well-conceived and designed using responsive web design; adaptive web design for browser-based mobile apps, and native platform based mobile applications for specific native apps that comply with iOs, Android, BlackBerry, and other devices.

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Enterprise mobility and access to data makes employees more productive and ensures appropriate collaboration, accountability and empowerment, and it encourages consumers to buy more products and services. So, it is no surprise that enterprises are putting more pressure on IT teams and consultants to find an affordable, timely way to satisfy these needs and to anticipate the ever-changing technology requirements that will affect the future of the organization.

In order to effectively address enterprise mobility, BYOD, BYOT, and BYOP, IT professionals must rethink their approach to users (inside and outside the walls of the business) and recognize that even an enterprise employee is a ‘customer’ of an application. Those customers bring expectations that are crafted by their consumer experience and the variety of entertaining, intuitive, integrated technology experiences they touch and see every day. Those experiences include social media and the concept of sharing information with others. No matter who the user is or how you interact with them, they will expect to use a personal device to access the myriad of technology tools and experiences they need – end-users, customers, consumers, employees, business partners, suppliers or stakeholders – every user has a device they prefer. Users have spent time personalizing and organizing their devices and learning the navigation, tools and short cuts that allow them to use their device(s) quickly and easily. Users don’t want to be told how to access information. A user interface must be intuitive enough for the least tech-savvy of your users and sophisticated enough to allow tech-savvy users to leverage shortcuts and complete a task efficiently and without frustration.

To plan for and execute an enterprise mobility initiative and make applications suitable for tablets, smart phones, desktops, and various size screens and devices, the internal IT team and/or IT consultant must have the experience, skills and knowledge to solicit and document detailed requirements, and make recommendations. The team must select the appropriate applications to be included in the enterprise mobility project, and consider the impact on the IT infrastructure and they must be able to manage and sustain this environment to address the ever-changing needs of its users and customers.

If an internal IT team or consultant is not experienced in responsive web design (RWD), adaptive web design (AWD), native application design and user interface redesign, the enterprise mobility project will not succeed. Related technical and functional experience must include cross-platform expertise, experience in building and executing comprehensive testing schemes, including third-party application testing for specific devices like the iPhone, iPad, Android, Windows phone, etc. In addition, the design of security standards will be key for BYOD, BYOT and BYOP initiatives. The business must ensure that the user’s privacy is protected and that data and information accessed or stored on their personal device does not threaten proprietary, business or personal information.

The complexity of an ever-expansive mobile user base is only compounded by user demand for business and consumer applications that will be accessed via a personal device. This kind of merged user experience multiples the business and user concerns and makes it more difficult to plan and execute an enterprise mobility initiative. The stakes are very high on these projects and a wrong move can create real problems for users and businesses alike. Therefore it is crucial that an IT manager or internal IT team or consultant look to the experts to ensure that the project is planned and completed by those who have the depth and breadth of experience and skill to address all high level and detail level issues and concerns.

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