Benchmarking Points to Mobility’s Next Frontier

Apple hit headlines again this month after analysts predicted that it could become the first company to reach a trillion dollar market capitalization.  It was driven, of course, by the white-hot success of its iPhone and iPad devices.

Indeed, with expectations now for more than 130 million iPhones sold in 2012, and more than 60 million iPads, Apple’s success speaks volumes about the popularity of mobile devices.  It’s no longer just a technology story – it’s a cultural phenomenon.

At the same time, however, an equally dramatic shift is happening in business, and how businesses operate, as communications and computing power become untethered from the desktop.

In one dramatic example, SAP’s Performance Benchmarking group recently analyzed the results of companies with “high” vs “low” maturity of their Enterprise Mobility initiatives.  The survey found that, among other benefits, companies that are leading the way in mobility have on average 2.4% higher customer satisfaction, and 21.5% lower customer churn.  In some industries, this alone can spell the difference between winning and losing.  (See the chart. To see the study or for more on SAP’s Business Performance Benchmarking, visit valuemanagement.sap.com.)

Examples are everywhere.  Major retail chains are arming in-store salespeople with iPads to assist customers by checking available inventory and product information.  Some go a step further by allowing customers to design products on iPads right from stores. Even smaller outfits are in the game: some restaurants have integrated technology into the dining experience by allowing customers to select their orders from iPad-hosted menus at table.

The bottom line is that for more and more companies, mobility already is fundamentally transforming the way they interact with their customers, and the consumer experiences they provide.  And, given the way mobile devices are flying off shelves, it’s clear that the impact of mobility on business will only get bigger.

In other words, what we’re seeing now with mobility in the enterprise still may be just the tip of the iceberg.

SAP’s Performance Benchmarking program is a strategic service sponsored by our Value Engineering organization. Originally launched in 2004 the program has more than 12,000 participants from more than 4,000 companies and studies available in 12 languages. Participants receive—free of charge—customized and confidential benchmarking comparisons against industry peers as well as aggregate analyses. To participate in the SAP benchmarking program, go to the Value Management homepage.