View Points >> Viewpoints

Craig LeppanCraig Leppan

iPads at till points, retail stores where tills are outdated, and small businesses with mobile Point of Sale (POS) carried in back pockets – whatever the market, the face of retail is changing.

True mobility is ringing in an edgy new POS era for large and small businesses. But while ideas and innovation may well be the currency of the future, mobile technology foundations need to be rock solid to ensure a flawless customer experience that upholds the brand and reputation of the company and enables room for growth.

Retailers and companies can see the mobile business future but careful planning is required. Mobility is not an add-on, it provides a realtime interactive experience and it is only going to get bigger. App development is just the tip of the iceberg and an in-depth discussion about integration, process and content is required. Mobile needs to be looked at with a strong enterprise integration focus and companies need a platform to help them do that. Just building native apps and integrating them into the same web services you’ve used for web or B2B integration will cause a lot of pain when you come to look at multi-device management and deployment, , analytics and testing.

The potential to empower people to carry their business in their back pockets through mobile technology is huge. Stock availability, customer data and even payment will soon be accessed from back pocket devices. Business will be conducted in a completely spontaneous and customer-centric way. It suits large enterprise with their sales forces out on site, and it will break open a whole new way for small entrepreneurs to do business. Soon even credit card machine technology will morph into a secure smart app for retailers who can mine and store information about their customers on mobile platforms – whether by tablet or smartphone.

It is clear, companies need to get trusted business technology experts to look at the full landscape and relate the business plan back to technology.

About the author: , mobility lead at the Ovations Group.