Enabling mobile access has complex technological implications for businesses’ ERP platforms because their ERP environment will be exposed to the outside world. That means making data, systems and applications externally accessible in a way that can be readily understood.
The most efficient way of doing this is via a gateway that converts ERP elements into a standard, open data format – allowing them to be easily deployed onto servers, browsers and mobile devices.
“Going mobile means securely opening your ERP environment to the outside world. SAP NetWeaver Gateway makes life easier by creating a single point of exposure.” Brenton O’Callaghan, Consultant, Bluefin Solutions
Having this single point of interface makes life significantly less complex when creating mobile solutions. Organisations no longer need to stop and consider how to bolt mobile onto each project, as this simply becomes business as usual.
Failure to adopt Open Standards creates technological silos when it comes to mobile. Working in a proprietary format creates the need for specialists to develop bespoke applications for a business’ particular ERP system.
Not only is this a costly approach, it also results in major security and data protection headaches because each application works differently, presenting its own security challenges.
By contrast, using a widely known data format opens up the company’s ERP system to the whole developer community, fostering greater innovation and removing the need for costly specialists.
Common standards also create a consistent method of designing mobile applications, and ensure that apps are based on tried-and-tested security methods.
At its heart, mobile is an enabling technology. But without open standards, companies risk disabling themselves from the benefits.