Speak of Enterprise Mobility and you are talking of a wide range of devices. The one area that is recording exponential growth, however, is to do with wearables. Not without reason. With the integration of augmented reality and artificial intelligence, wearables are going a long way in streamline business processes, enhancing efficiencies and more. In fact, going forward, the growth in the worldwide wearable market is projected to be fuelled by the enterprise.
As per an ABI research, the market is slated to grow at a CAGR of 25% between 2017 & 2022, with healthcare devices, wearable cameras and scanners constituting over 70% of enterprise wearable shipments.
With access to real-time data, wearables can open up newer avenues for businesses. What also adds to the improved productivity, across industry verticals, is the hands-free access to information that they afford. The efficacy of wearables also draws from the fact that they can integrate with apps and software and thereby lend themselves to seamless integration in the enterprise scheme of things. If one was to look at some of the major advantages that enterprise mobility can drive with wearables, the top of the list would comprise:
- Improved productivity- Wearables can go a long way in improving employee efficiency and productivity on account of access to real-time information and analytics.
- Consumer satisfaction- It follows from the above that improved employee efficiency translates into customer satisfaction and thereby deepened consumer relationships.
- Mitigates security risks- The fact that wearables are equipped with enterprise-grade security features ensures that security isn’t compromised at any point and that businesses can adequately protect sensitive data.
Use-Cases of Wearables
While there are enough and more efficiency as well as cost arguments when it comes to the use of wearables in enterprise mobility, it will be interesting to look at some of the use-cases, especially as their usage is continuously expanding beyond the traditional deployment that has been task and industry-specific.
- Service Technicians
Wearables can be of great benefit to technicians who can make use of augmented reality for equipment repair as well as maintenance tasks. Needless to mention, the ability to troubleshoot jumps many- fold. The fact that the technician can work on the issue hand-free, further adds to his efficiency and reduces the average time taken per task. The added advantage is also the ability to connect with other team members and subject experts for collaboration, in case of difficult on-site repairs. This can be a great time saver as the technician need not resort to back and forth e-mailing of information. Similar advantages can also be reaped when it comes to on-site inspections.
- Wearables for Safety
When it comes to ensuring the safety of workers in hazardous situations, wearable sensors can come in handy. Not only can it trigger an alert in case of a fall, for example, but sensors can even record body temperature, blood pressure, heartbeat and more.
- Usage in Medicine
One of the interesting use cases in medicine is the deployment of smart glasses that can significantly reduce the doctor’s time on administrative tasks as they translate patient encounters into medical records.
- Use in Banking
Wearables can come in handy when it comes to offering easy access to account information. Additionally, banks can leverage wearables for aspects such as sending promotion notifications on new features when a customer is near a bank branch. Similarly, notifications on bill payments when the customer is near a location where bills can be processed can be an added advantage.
These, of course, are only some of the use-cases of wearables and there would be many more industries jumping on to the wearable bandwagon on account of the many tangible benefits, it affords. Products like fitness trackers, which are already extremely popular in the consumer segment are today being used by enterprises to ensure employee health and reduced reliance on expensive medical procedures in the light of the growing healthcare costs. Wearables like Fitbit, Google Glass, PLAYFIT from World of PLAY, Samsung Smartwatches which have a fairly ubiquitous usage in the consumer market can, therefore, find a lot of scope in the enterprise segment as well. In fact, Virgin Atlantic’s staff at the Heathrow airport being armed with smartwatches to greet passengers by name is a good example of what is primarily considered to be a consumer market product making a great enterprise use.
The important bit, however, for the wearable to deliver the advantages is to have a reliable communication network that can ensure that the data is delivered in real-time. Also, there needs to be enough internal technical resource to manage and secure these devices.
Clearly, wearables are the future of the connected workplace. With the launch of 5G technology and improved speed of data, they will increasingly become an integral part of the Enterprise Mobility Management plan.