Hywel Moore, MicroStrategyHywel Moore, MicroStrategy

Mobile business intelligence can enhance the decision-making process and provide new sources of data.

This is according to speakers at the Mobile Commerce Executive Forum, held in Johannesburg recently.

“Our lives will only become more mobile-centric,” said Hywel Moore, MicroStrategy UK sales engineer. In order to accommodate their individual needs, businesses should have the tools to build their own mobile apps, Moore noted.

“We believe that companies will need to develop hundreds of mobile applications: not only BI, but also HR, general management and sales applications,” said Stefan Harbron, MicroStrategy professional services director, also speaking at the event. “Apps are needed for every customer-facing process, and for every internal business process.”

User-friendly applications enhance the decision-making process by making data and visualisations simple and easy to access, said Moore. “The way the market is going is self-service for the end-user, making it easy for the end-user to format data into visualisations and act on it. Agile BI is all about self-service for end-users, allowing them to do things alone very quickly, without IT support.”

The native functionality of mobile devices can be a useful tool in providing data for analysis. According to MicroStrategy, its Mobile Identity network can provide user identity on a mobile device, by scanning a QR code or creating a one-time, four-digit user code.

This allows users to sign and seal documents, gain access to files or locations, and also provides a “real-time global view of identity activity, activity analysis and anomaly detection”, explained Moore.

“There’s a lot we can do using the underlying BI platform to drive this forward,” Moore continued. “This will drive the uptake of mobile BI.”

Mobile is such a vital trend to follow, concluded Izak Bester, MicroStrategy sales engineer, because it’s available all the time, everywhere, to everyone, and has the functionality of features such as GPS and app stores. “We can do anything if we’re connected.”