There is lot of CIO and business discussion on the subject mobile end user experience taking place at the moment. This has been spurred on by trends such bring your own device (BYOD), cloud computing and increasing levels of mobility enter the enterprise.
The most striking thing about this discussion is that end user experience is being discussed in terms of who the end users are within the organisation workforce. Important as the internal end user is, the lack of attention to the customer end user experience via mobile devices. During the summer the CIO of one of the UK’s leading financial service providers told the Business IT Hub that his organisation is seeing increasing online traffic coming from smartphones and tablet devices, but the level of transactions via these devices is low and in some cases falling.
Customers are increasingly initiating their experience of an organisation via technology using the mobile internet or smartphone and younger generations will have their entire experience of an organisation via mobile technology.
This poses an interesting dilemma for IT leaders. If the customer experience is not considered to be part of the end user experience debate it suggests that many organisations have an IT department and CIO that is still too focused on being a service provider to their organisations. The result is that CIOs in this scenario are not pushing the business strategy of the organisation to embrace technology and reach new markets. This is potentially damaging to the perception of the CIO role and prevents CIO's from gaining a seat on the senior management board. For the business community which is currently struggling to recover from the credit crisis, the concern is that they are not using technology to recover and grow. This will leave chinks in a business' armour that new entrants that are more agile with technology will seek to exploit.
The recent history of the internet is littered with examples of new entrants creating a better end user experience and taking over that market, whether its retail, mobility, travel or media entertainment.
IT leaders are of course faced with the same challenges as everyone in the workforce - organisations are expecting more deliverables but often fail to provide the resources to achieve the targets they set.
Many IT leaders say it would be great to have the mind space and time to consider the end user experience from a customer's perspective, if only it were possible.
Pressures aside, it is imperative for CIOs to make the customer's end user experience part of their focus over coming months and perhaps some other members of the C-level team will allocate some resources.