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6 Mobile ERP Pitfalls and How to Steer Clear of Them


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If you already have an ERP in place, integrating mobile capabilities should be at the top of your to-do list. IDC expects that spending on mobile platforms and business applications will continue to rise as more firms put aside budget to pay for investments in those areas. Although mobile ERPs have become the norm, a lot can go wrong with new technologies without the right practices and policies in place. When you set up operations and use software to run the business, there are several factors to consider, and more importantly several pitfalls to avoid. Let's look at some of the mobile ERP implementation challenges and how you can overcome them:

  1. Non-standardization: One of the first requirements of a successful mobile ERP system is simplicity and standardization. Although mobile ERP is rapidly becoming a must-have and there are a lot of platform choices available, it’s good to keep in mind that you can't possibly support everything. Running a mobile ERP on multiple operating systems may result in integration, storage, and data issues for mobile platforms. Choose your platforms wisely. Adopting uniform standards for mobile ERP enables you to standardize software and ensure guidelines associated with computing environments, applications, storage, and access are uniform across all locations.
  2. Multiple Versions of Software: The advantages of having the same software version running at each site is often overlooked. When data exchange from one site to another takes place, different versions of the mobile application may result in data discrepancy, which can lead to quality, safety, and decision-making issues. Uniformly deploying the same version of the mobile ERP platform across devices and operating systems goes a long way in ensuring successful adoption.
  3. Poor Network Connectivity: With regard to mobile ERP, connectivity is crucial. Poor network connectivity can have a catastrophic effect on the entire mobile ERP deployment. Metrics such as connection speed, bandwidth, quality of service, and dependability are areas that need attention. If employees cannot connect to the ERP system while on the go, they do not have access to crucial data that is essential for decision making. Having a single application in place for capturing and managing tasks ensures seamless and timely access to accurate business data.
  4. Unrestricted Wireless Access: A major type of risk that plagues enterprises is uncontrolled wireless access. Unsecured networks act as easy entry points for hackers to gain access to sensitive company data. Strong and clear corporate policies that define what secure and unsecure means should be laid down in addition to having remediation plans in place to address repercussions when the guidelines are not followed.
  5. Weak Security Measures: Malware is a growing concern with mobile devices, especially when users access company data through unsecured networks. Apps are highly vulnerable to attacks as they often act as carriers for viruses that exploit the weaknesses of mobile devices and compromise sensitive corporate information. Installation of anti-malware software must be a mandate for every employee using mobile ERP.
  6. Uncontrolled BYOD Policy: Careful consideration is required for organizations that have a BYOD policy. While allowing employees to use devices they are most familiar with improves productivity and efficiency, supporting multiple devices across multiple operating systems and form factors is not only tedious, it also raises several issues as multiple layers of security need to be deployed which increases administrative costs. Data access, storing, and sharing policies through multiple devices should be thoroughly investigated from a security standpoint.

Mitigating Challenges

Mobile ERP implementation brings with it many challenges, but when addressed, the risks can be alleviated and the true value of mobile ERP can be fully realized. It takes strong policies about easy access, network availability, and security to ensure uniform and secure access to end-users across operating systems and computing environments. When these aspects are addressed, the end result is a reliable and highly functional mobile ERP environment. Microsoft Dynamics AX, for example, offers a fully browser-based, new HTML5 client which gives you access to Dynamics AX across platforms and devices and enables organizations to extend and build business-specific mobile applications.

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by Indusa

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