IBM Study: Four Ways to Achieve Maximum ROI in Enterprise Mobility

ARMONK, NY – 22 Apr 2017: Enterprises continue to aggressively launch new mobile platforms, products and services, but may be falling short of the full potential value of their mobile projects, according to a study by IBM (NYSE: IBM). The return on investment (ROI) for mobile currently accounts for only a fraction of what is possible, and organizations are not taking advantage of the full value mobility brings to the enterprise.

According to a IBM Institute for Business Value (IBV) study “Return on Mobile Capturing the Value Beneath the Surface,” there are four ways for organizations to increase their ROI from mobile. The study, based on surveys of more than 1,000 C-suite and mobile executives globally, found that 62 percent of executives surveyed said their most successful mobile projects pay for themselves in less than 12 months – a considerably faster rate than the two-to-three years it takes for other technology projects.

“While very aware of the benefits of mobile computing, organizations are struggling to see its greater potential value which remains largely untapped. Even the most successful mobile projects fall short of established business goals more than half the time,” said Pete Teigen, IBM Institute for Business Value Mobile Leader. “Companies need to strategically align mobile initiatives, secure the right support and strike the right balance to tap into the vast, unrealized value of mobile.”

For companies to gain greater value from their mobile initiatives, the IBV recommends the following:

  • Prioritize strategically rather than only tactically: Aligning mobile initiatives with organization-wide business goals results in better outcomes instead of emphasizing quick, inexpensive efforts with limited impact.
  • Secure C-suite support: It’s not enough to listen to employees and departments when planning mobile initiatives. Successful companies, such as Bernhardt Furniture, use longer-term strategic vision from the C-suite to guide their mobile initiatives.
  • Manage the mobile portfolio actively: Companies that take a strategic approach by building and scaling internal resources across their organizations are more likely to take advantage of the transformational aspects of mobile. Instead of limiting mobile projects to the Information Technology (IT) team, mobile should be integrated throughout the entire organization and become embedded into the organization’s culture.
  • Balance off-the-shelf and customized approaches: Recognizing when to invest in custom solutions and when to opt for existing mobile app technology solutions will help an organization operate strategically and focus on business transformation.

Contrary to the behaviors by the leading performers in the survey, the research also found that 60 percent of organizations do not look for strategic alignment in prioritizing mobile initiatives. The IBV also found that almost 40 percent of executives surveyed said they used an ad-hoc approach, with only “some” coordination between mobile projects and the organization’s business divisions. Nearly two-thirds of executives said they were spending at least $5 million on mobile initiatives over the next year, with the pipeline of mobile activity expected to triple by 2018.

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