Business and Technology Assessment
In performing an M-Business strategy, you will often want to start by
exploring and documenting the “as-is” and “to-be” environmental
context in which your initiatives need to exist and provide value. This
information can often be captured via a combination of interviews,
workshops, and review of existing documentation and standards.
As-Is Environment
One of the first initiatives to perform is the assessment of the current
state business and technology environment. This can help lay the
groundwork so that the current “as-is” environment is well under-
stood and documented. In a large corporation, this can be quite a chal-
lenge and it is important to tailor the amount of effort in this phase to
the specific level of need. Generally, you will want to capture enough
information to have an inventory of current application initiatives
across the enterprise and an inventory of current skill sets, application
standards, best practices, and guidelines. The technology assessment
should give you enough information to understand what is in place
today and what can be leveraged in future M-Business initiatives.
With regard to M-Business applications, you may wish to determine
the range of wireless and handheld devices in use within the enterprise
and any current wireless applications that are in use or in a pilot stage.
Determine which devices are employee-owned and which are supported
by the enterprise. Also look outside the enterprise to ascertain what
devices such as pagers, PDAs, and handhelds are frequently used by your
customers, suppliers, and business partners. With this knowledge, you
may be able to roll out M-Business applications that support the cur-
rently available devices without having to require additional purchases
and new training. Having this information at hand provides an excellent
frame of reference as we move forward in our M-Business strategy, iden-
tify target initiatives, and prioritize opportunities. Note that it is also
important to balance the relative merits of using existing devices with the
merits of moving toward newer devices with improved functionality.
Certain M-Business applications may have limited functionality on the
currently available devices, but may have the potential for greatly
enhanced functionality on some of the newer devices. This speaks to the
Chapter 6 M-Business Strategic Roadmap >> 153

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