If you asked a chief information officer (CIO) today what his or her biggest challenge is for the near future, what would that be? Social media? The cloud?
It would probably be mobility, according to a new Accenture survey, “The Accenture 2013 CIO Mobility Survey.” In the study, 79 percent of global respondents cited mobility as a revenue generator. An impressive 84 percent said it would significantly improve customer interactions, and 83 percent said it would significantly affect their businesses. As a result, mobility will be a top priority in the coming year for more than one-third (34 percent) of CIOs; and 42 percent of CIOs ranked mobility as one of their top five priorities. These figure are considerably higher than in last year’s survey, according to Accenture.
The results of the study were drawn from an online survey with 413 IT professionals (CIOs, CTOs, directors of technology or IT, and chief mobility officers) across 14 industries in 14 countries: Australia, Brazil, China, Finland, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Mexico, New Zealand, Spain, United Kingdom, and United States.
So what form is this “mobile first” thinking likely to take? The most popular application chosen (by 43 percent of respondents) was improving field and customer service with instant data access, capture and processing. Next, at 36 percent, was engaging customers via mobile devices, especially with transactions on mobile devices (34 percent). Twenty-nine percent of all respondents said they plan to design, develop and/or distribute connected devices to support B2B applications. Over the next year, nearly half (46 percent) of CIOs said they plan to make workflow changes to better incorporate mobility into the business. Additionally, 73 percent believe mobility will impact their business as much or more than the Web revolution of the late 90s, compared to 67 percent who felt this way in a similar Accenture survey conducted last year.
“It’s encouraging that companies are embracing the importance of mobility but they need to go further by identifying the top areas for mobile deployment,” said Jin Lee, senior managing director, Accenture Mobility, in a statement announcing the survey. “In particular they should look at areas that will grow, such as connected devices, and conduct a ‘gap analysis’ to determine how to catch up, or even better, get ahead of the curve. Other critical considerations include investments, budget allocation, re-training staff, hiring mobile expertise, and leveraging external experts to help develop or implement mobility strategies.”
Edited by Brooke Neuman