While mobile application adoption in traditional industrial manufacturing corporations has lagged some other industries, many people in manufacturing today have begun to realize the vast potential mobility has to benefit their organization. Many different types of manufacturers have already “taken the plunge” and enabled their employees to accomplish a wide variety of tasks with the help of mobile applications. For example, sales productivity applications can enable sales reps to access customer and product information with mobile applications that offer a more engaging sales process and speed purchasing decisions. Back at the warehouse and distribution centers, receiving and storage operations can now provide inventory visibility immediately at the dock with the help of mobile devices, providing a real-time look at availability. And in fulfillment, manufacturers can give their customers the ability to track and trace orders while optimizing their own delivery routes and fleet management. These are just a few examples of the multitude of tasks in which manufacturers across all types of different markets can now accomplish with the help of mobile applications.
For those manufacturers still on the fence about implementing mobility solutions, the options and process can seem a bit daunting. There is the option to build an application in house, buy a solution to develop an app, or hire an external third-party to create it. Within each option lie additional critical decision points and questions to answer –should this application be built for one specific, corporate-issued device, or developed to be used across multiple device platforms? Do native applications, web applications or a mixture of both constitute the best deployment option?