True Mobility: The Convergence
of CRM, Social & Big Data
BY ABBIGAIL KRIEBS
During a presentation at their recent user conference, Epicor’s Vice President of Technology & Strategy, Erik John- son, told the audience that one in six active patents today
revolve around mobile technology and cell phones. This figure
alone would be indicative of a market trend that is exploding in a
single direction. Add it to the fact that nearly every third television
commercial is for some version of the latest and greatest device
offering, and that everywhere you go you see people out together
but swiping away at their phones or tablets, you have not just a
trend, but an entirely new culture.
Mobile is Just a Device
Everyone – rightfully so – is making a big deal out of “mobile”
these days, but in the wise words of Infor’s Director of Global
Product Marketing, MJ Crabbe-Barberis, “mobile is just a way to
present information.” At the end of the day, that fancy, titanium-plated, nineteenth generation touch screen is just a device. What is
gives you is access to the information that you want. This information is the same regardless of whether it is in hand on the road or
at a desk at the office.
The key to being effective at being mobile, then, is the data
and system behind the mobile device. True mobility is the point at
which Customer Relationship Management software (CRM), the
social media movement, and big data collide to make a business
more effective at what it does.
According to a study by Gartner
called “The Nexus of Forces: Social,
Mobile, Cloud and Information,”
there are four points to this new
state of mobility:
• Mobile is the platform.
• Social is the community.
• Information (big data) is the context.
• Cloud is the product that enables delivery of all of the above.
The convergence of these four pieces is
where we are today, at a point where these
disruptive technologies are forcing new per-
spectives and new plans of attack for businesses
in all industries, but especially distributors who
are operating on low margins and in a highly
The call for true mobility when it comes to a
company’s sales force is inarguable. Larry Bowden,