In recent years, the Internet has shown to generate major impulses for business solutions and processes and to initiate changes in almost every industry. Mobile document management has a similar potential – Bitkom has rated it the industry trend of the year 2014.

ECM providers are optimistic

Development figures: in 2013, 42 per cent of all enterprises owning a web connection provided their staff with mobile web-ready devices – an increase of nine per cent compared to 2012 found Statistisches Bundesamt (the Federal Statistical Office). The increase is expected to go on in 2014. That’s good news for ECM providers – according to the current ECM barometer, 88 per cent of them expect their revenue to rise in the second six months.

Three prevalent trends

A large share of this anticipated growth may well be attributable to mobile EMS and DMS solutions. After all, they merge the dynamics of three trends into one: Enterprises are facing more challenging documentation and efficiency requirements which digitised documents and archives help them to meet. Nowadays, mobile work is almost a matter of course and mobile equipment has become as powerful and ubiquitous as stationary units.

Mobile interfaces are a must…

A mobile interface is often a key factor for enterprises deciding to run an ECM or DMS system. Thanks to mobile ECM, not only the field service but also the staff of originally stationary departments are less and less tied to their desks and able to access important documents and handle time-critical workflows from almost anywhere. Proprietary mobile solutions also benefit enterprises by actively preventing a “shadow IT” and its incalculable security risks.

…and being used more and more

Hardly surprising that ECM providers are extending their portfolio of mobile products. They already boast a sound range of functions. Doctors have immediate access to the case files while doing their ward round. Financial accountants can have invoices approved from staff on the road, thereby possibly securing the company’s discount gain. Mobile access to ERP systems makes stocktaking faster for traders and improves their warehousing.

Logistics experts find it easier than ever before to check the goods received against the order details. And there is more to come: Mobile document entry is another much-debated functionality which might soon facilitate travel expense accounting. Many examples sharing a common denominator: Mobile solutions make life easier for enterprises.

Security is an ongoing matter of interest

There is another aspect to consider: Enterprises implementing mobile ECM or DMS solutions also define the security standard – no matter whether they allow the use of private equipment (“Bring Your Own Device”) or provide company-owned devices. They put a stop to the loss of data and theft of know-how as well as to chaotic versioning which is the inevitable consequence of company documents growing wings and flying away into private clouds or USB sticks.

A cross-platform future

The decision for a HTML5-based web or native application currently depends on the project concerned (as yet). In the medium run, HTML5 or CSS3-based web applications are likely to be one step ahead, though, because only their users share the same experience across all platforms – specifically if they feature a “responsive web design”.

To conclude: The market is on the move and will certainly come up with many a fascinating development – and EASY SOFTWARE AG will be among the contributors.

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