As we reported last week, workforce mobility has become a requirement to remain competitive in today’s business world. Mobile Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) applications will impact any area where employees work more effectively away from their desk. Key areas impacted include:
- Human Resources (HR)
- Distribution and Manufacturing
- Sales and Marketing
This week, we will begin to look at the mobility trends in these functions, the advantages of implementing mobility, and the challenges you will face.
Human Resource managers are embracing mobile technology. As employees become more mobile and connected in their personal lives, they expect the same capabilities in their work environment. They are comfortable with accessing information, setting reservations and making purchases on their mobile devices. There are many HR processes that can be more easily completed with mobile access.
- Expense reports can be entered from employees’ personal mobile devices enabling them to record expenses as they occur rather than when employees return to the office
- Vacation requests can be submitted and reviewed without administrative hassle
- Employee reviews can be completed while the manager is out of the office
- Time sheets can be completed and entered
- Payroll stubs can be delivered and reviewed
These capabilities should be seamlessly integrated with your existing HR system and considered in your ERP selection. Using a comprehensive system such as Sage Human Resource Management System will help you leverage HR knowledge, policies, and processes to make more effective strategic decisions regarding your workforce.
There are many advantages to using mobile technology in HR business processes. HR management is seeing significant increases in efficiency and greater employee satisfaction.
- As common HR tasks can be completed on a mobile device, employees are able to enter their own data directly into the system. Often, paperwork and intermediate steps can be eliminated completely increasing efficiency and improving data accuracy
- Mobile devices can be used for immediate feedback, rewards and recognition. A message can be sent to an employee directly after a job has been well done. This can increase employee satisfaction and reduce turnover
Sales and Marketing is typically the most mobile part of your workforce and the impact of a mobile ERP could be the greatest.
- The sales team benefits greatly from a mobile HR system especially when they are completing tasks out in the field
- Mobile Customer Resource Management (CRM) applications enable your sales force to make better decisions and be more responsive to customer needs providing a clear competitive advantage
While there are significant benefits to implementing mobile technology across all areas of business, there are certainly challenges that you will need to address.
- App Management: The proliferation of apps available on smartphones and tablets could create a hodgepodge of unrelated systems
- Data Security and Sharing: As more employees have direct access to your ERP data, you will need a strategy in place to ensure your sensitive corporate information is secure
- Employee-owned Devices: Over 70% of mobile employees will conduct work on their own devices by 2017. Having a wide variety of devices all accessing your network will increase operational complexity
- Cost: Creating an infrastructure to support mobile ERP will require an initial cost
In spite of these challenges, mobile capabilities should be included in your technology plans, particularly in your ERP selection. In future blogs, we will address specific advantages and challenges in implementing mobile technology to further automate distribution and manufacturing. Please contact us to learn more about enabling mobile technology in your ERP. For more information on ERP selection with mobile capabilities, visit here.
Download our whitepaper, “Supporting Workplace Mobility with ERP”, for a comprehensive look at how to support workplace mobility with a modern ERP software solution. Through the whitepaper, you will learn the impact that mobility could have on your business. In addition, the whitepaper will identify the advantages to implementing mobile ERP in your company as well as the challenges that you will need to address in implementing mobile ERP solutions.