Sramana Mitra: Let me mention a few of the points you discussed. First, you said you have 20,000 devices that you are supporting right now?
Oliver Bussmann: Yes, we have 20,000 iPads. We are the second largest user of iPads. There is only one other, a Korean telecommunications company, with [more, at] 30,000 devices. We have 60,000 employees, so one third of our employees have a tablet.
SM: A third of your employees have a tablet. What third is that? Is that based on any particular job function?
OB: This concerns people on the road. We have salespeople and consultants. We have more than 4,000 salespeople, all of whom have iPads. These are consultants who are doing project work, marketing, executives, and developers who create mobile apps. On top of that we provide choices on the smartphone side between a RIM device, an Android device, or an Apple iPhone.
SM: You talked about 50 iPad or iPhone applications that are in that mix as well. Could you talk a little about the apps that you deployed and what the thinking behind that is?
OB: There are five categories that treat the areas of mobile business intelligence, dashboards, reports, financial sales, and revenue. Everything you need to steer your business. There is also another mega trend here that enables a new user behavior, because we are able to process an immense amount of data using our in-memory technology. You move all the data into a main memory instead of rewriting it on a disk, so you can analyze a massive amount of customer data. That would usually take days. With that you analyze all your information: your financial situation, your revenue situation, and so on on the iPad. And you can see something like email consumption. Email is always up to date, easy to navigate, and easy to use. Usually, after one or two minutes of reading, you move on to the next topic. We will see the same on the business intelligence side. People look at this information multiple times a day because we update it in real time, whenever there is a sales deal. People are working on something and their progress is reflected in the data immediately, so they can steer the business from their tablet. Business intelligence and reporting is the biggest use case that we see on tablets.
The second area is everything around the customer. People in consulting support, for example, have everything when they go to a customer. From customer information, price information, product information, support information, etc., whatever they need to do their job on the road. The third area is all about information management. We have magazine news apps. There is also insight to provide customized news per user group, region, and line of business.
The fourth category is all about business workflows that usually are portal self-services, but they are now available as an app, containing things like shopping carts or vacation requests. You initiate something, then you need approval for it.
The fifth category is productivity apps that help you to do the day-to-day business, like managing important documents. In my case I don’t have any printouts with me anymore. I go from one meeting to another, and I have no PowerPoint printouts, because I have all the documents stored in the private cloud on my mobile device. If there is an update, I immediately have access to it. Unstructured data like [that in] PowerPoint and structured data in dashboards I can access any time. Therefore, I can really manage my business with the tablet. Those are the major areas we see for those mobile apps.