Dynamic forces shape mobility market towards high growth

Source: ARC

Oct 12, 2010

Many enterprises are adopting mobility to reduce costs through improved business processes, workflow and productivity — even though many other IT projects are being delayed due to the difficult economy. A convergence of multiple mobility technologies (Wi-Fi, RFID, GPS, GIS, Bluetooth and Voice-to-text) have opened new areas of benefit allowing additional projects to rise “above the line” for approval. The worldwide market for Mobility for Asset Management will have growth this year and is expected to have strong growth through 2014 according to a new ARC Advisory Group market outlook study. 

“The information explosion is profoundly larger than previously thought. With mobility, technicians can be given linked sets of information for work orders, history, inventory, instructions, location, maps, up-selling and more. Mobility extends the business processes for asset management to the point of action and creates enormous new opportunities for optimization,” according to Research Director Ralph Rio, the principal author of ARC’s “Mobility for Asset Management Worldwide Outlook”.

The iPhone/iPad factor

The addition of intelligence to mobility has become the most empowering and significant trend of the 21st century. With smart phones, users have seen the capability of mobility in their personal lives. Now, business people easily identify opportunities for improving business operations. The Apple iPhone and iPad had particularly strong impact. They are setting expectations and accelerating the pace of development for industrial mobility hardware and applications. The combined effect is improved mobility solutions that drive growth for industrial applications.

People who fix things are mobile

Mobility for Asset Management applies to those in maintenance and field service whose daily workflow makes using a stationary workstation impractical. These people include technicians, crafts people, dispatchers, maintenance and other personnel who physically move about the facility or among customers. This market study covers mobility for applications including in-plant maintenance, field service management, facilities management, fleet maintenance, condition monitoring, and environmental, health and safety. Mobility provides the bi-directional exchange of data including information display, data entry and confirmation for work orders, data collection and documentation while the technician is at the location of the asset.

Use mobility to avoid the maintenance death spiral

Those who react to the difficult economic conditions with a broad cut in maintenance can cause a downward death spiral. Beyond a tipping point, cuts result in less preventive maintenance, which causes increases in reactionary, expensive repairs. To cover this corresponding increase in costs, preventive maintenance is cut further, only accelerating the decline. Expensive reactive maintenance continues to displace preventative tasks at an increasing rate leading to a downward death spiral in capability. Instead, thought-leading executives make process improvements with mobility. They drive greater efficiency with immediate and measurable cost savings.

For more information on this study, visit the ARC Market Research section.