We've reached the tipping point at which companies will reap great benefits by submitting all kinds of business processes to mobile systems. Are you ready? (CIO Insight)I got my first cell phone back in 1989it was a Motorola "brick" that cost more than $1,000and Ive probably used a couple of dozen different models since. My first PDA arrived as soon as they were available, and Ive probably gone through a dozen different models. I got a "luggable" business computer in 1986 and a notebook computer in 1991. Ive tried the entire repertoire of converged phone/PDA/ultra-lightweight PCs availableand some that arent. Its all because I spend almost all of my working time away from the "office"in fact, I no longer have a permanent office location. With a wired, or wireless, connection to the Internet and good VPN software, I can "office" just about anywhere. In this sense Im at the extreme of the mobile executive market segmentbut by no means at the extreme of the mobility market.
Consultants arent the only people who operate in highly mobile workplaces. Face-to-face sales forces and the teams of technicians who install everything from domestic cable service to industrial machinery are just two examples of jobs that require mobility. Add in field-service teams, couriers and transport operators, emergency service first responders, even utility-company meter readers, and you get a significant population of people who make up the mobile work force. Even people who work in one location may not have a fixed office: Security, messenger, janitorial and supervisory roles generally require movement as a part of the job design. And we all go to meetings.