By Andy Holtmann, Dexter + Chaney, LLC
Just the other day, I decided to bite the bullet and upgrade the cell phones my wife and I had been using for the past three years. Now, I had been dreading this as last time we upgraded, we moved from the older, flip-style “dumb phones” to Android smart phones with all the bells and whistles. Back then, I feared the change as I had to learn new things like managing data usage, accessing the internet and apps on the go. I was, however, surprised at how easy it was to adapt.
So it makes little sense that I had some of those same recurring fears this time around when upgrading. And sure enough, my fears were unfounded as the upgrade process was a breeze. It’s official. I’ve adapted. We as a society, have adapted. Today the device that is now resting comfortably in my pocket can connect me to nearly anything I want, virtually anywhere. My phone is my camera, my video camera, my computer, my work and personal email, my mobile music device, my television and so much more.
I use my mobile devices—phone, tablet, laptop—daily and can access anything I need. Cloud computing has taken the burden off of processing and storing data on these mobile devices, so that I don’t have to worry about how I will work—or play—remotely. Wherever I can get online, I can get to what I need.
That’s why businesses are not just adapting to the new mobility trend, but embracing it as well. Mobile accessibility allows people to be on the go rather than tied to an office, and further tied to a workstation. Concerns about security in the cloud slowed the initial adoption of mobile computing by businesses, but most people have come to realize that their data is no more secure on the server in their office than on a server in a data center.
In fact, data centers can often provide much better protection than most companies’ internal servers. Think about online banking services. Nearly every one of us utilizes them, and we trust servers outside of our control to manage our personal funds. That level of trust in the security of public-facing, cloud-enabled operations has helped convince many businesses to adapt their business models to meet today’s mobile computing demands.
What they’re finding is that mobile computing has actually improved their operations and efficiency. Work can be done outside the office, without delays due to needing a particular piece of information located only on a workstation computer. Payments for goods and services can be received instantly, allowing work to move quicker or consumers to procure items they want or need on the spot.
In the construction industry, mobile computing has eliminated a data gap that traditionally has caused costly delays on projects by connecting the field and the office instantly. Leading edge software has been developed specifically for the cloud so that anyone on project teams with the right permissions can access, update and process data in real time. While specialized mobile applications allow professionals to view and manipulate data that is directly relevant to them and their roles.
This new mobile computing environment has created a free-flowing data exchange that fosters genuine collaboration and relevant, reliable workflows—no matter where you happen to be working. And if your company isn’t at the very least adapting, then you could be in danger of getting left behind.