Front Row Solutions – What We Have Learnt From 10 Years of Mobile Data Collection
The mobile workforce in the US is predicted to be the fastest growing segment and climb to 105.4 million by 2020. This makes it imperative that companies develop a strategy to stay connected with their mobile workers. The difficulty lies not only in how mobile workers submit information from the field but also in simply getting them to do so. This is particularly true for those mobile workers that are customer facing – those who spend most of the day interacting with customers or potential customers. In today’s fast-paced world, it is not unusual for these mobile workers to have 10, 20 and in some cases 100’s (pollsters and surveyors) of customer interactions every day. How do you get them to provide information from all those customer interactions?
After 10 years of focusing on an app based paperless mobile data collection system, we have learned a great deal:
1) Mobile workers don’t have the time, the inclination, or the recompense to report on every customer interaction
2) There is a direct correlation between ease of use and the amount of information the mobile worker reports
3) The best time to do a report is immediately after a customer interaction while it is still fresh
4) Mobility does not mean usability with regards to mobile reporting systems.
5) The mobile worker must be rewarded for doing reports. The reward could be improved performance, recognition or be monetary
6) The reporting MUST be paperless. No mobile worker wants to carry and process a ream of paper. It defeats the purpose of being mobile and adds work for the company
7) The reporting system must be cellphone-based, not tablet based and certainly not web-based. We have found that even for companies that provide tablets their mobile workers are using their cell phones
8) The system must to flexible, customizable and easily modified to meet the constantly changing demands from management for new insights and analytics from the field
9) Companies understand the value of lead information over lag information. It is of little value to have information and insight from the field at the end of the week or month. By then it is too late to impact a difference
10) The information from the reports must seamlessly populate dashboards, databases, analytics and integrate into the current in-house CRM, ERP or financial system
What we did with what we learned:
- Is an app-based system that is primarily used on the cell phone
- Can be learned in 5 minutes
- Has ease of use and simplicity that allows the mobile worker to submit a report or form in 60 seconds or less (often less than 30 seconds) immediately after a customer interaction
- Gives the mobile worker the ability to review all previous customer interactions on the cell phone
- Integrates into most CRM, ERP, and big data analytics systems
- Automatically updates all in-house data systems, no paper required
- The reports, forms, surveys, polls etc. can be easily and quickly modified, updated and adjusted, all in less than 24hrs
- Has the unique real-time reporting function that gives insight into mobile worker location for accountability, route planning, mapping and mileage verification
- Is a SAAS system no capital to spend, no IT involvement required, no hardware to purchase, simply load the app customize the report or form and go
- Pricing includes all features, upgrades, customization of forms, loads, and changes at no additional charge
“The trend is likely to continue. Last year the American market research business International Data Corporation(IDC) forecast that by 2020, 70.3% of the American workforce will work from a mobile location”. -Bryan Basset IDC research analyst
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“Top Trends in the Mobile Workforce: Frost & Sullivan’s Latest Data.” Samsung Business Insights, 3 May 2017, insights.samsung.com/2016/10/03/top-trends-in-the-mobile-workforce-frost-sullivans-latest-look-at-enterprise-usage/.
“5 Major Workforce Mobility Trends That Will Shape Your Enterprise.” 5 Major Mobility Workforce Trends That Will Shape Your Enterprise Company | elcom, www.elcomcms.com/resources/blog/5-major-enterprise-mobility-trends-for-workforce.
Tmg. “Is working from home good or bad for business?” The Telegraph, Telegraph Media Group, 5 Sept. 2016, www.telegraph.co.uk/business/ready-and-enabled/todays-mobile-workforce-any-time-any-place/.