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Infonomics and Enterprise Mobility

by Kevin Benedict

May 29, 2012

Do you value and manage your enterprise information like it is a strategic asset?  In an insightful article by Gartner Inc.'s Douglas Laney, titled Infonomics: The Practice of Information Economics, the value of company information is explored.  I read this article with great interest and interpreted it in the context of enterprise mobility.

Here is Laney's description of Infonomics, "When considering how to put information to work for your organization, it’s important to go beyond thinking and talking about information as an asset, to actually valuing and treating it as one. This is the basis of the new theory and emerging discipline of Infonomics which provides organizations a foundation and methods for quantifying information asset value and formal information asset management practices."

In my mobile strategy workshops, I spend time with my clients exploring the value of "real-time" information to a company and the role enterprise mobility plays in it.  Laney's article takes it to the next level by treating it as a discipline. 

Here is another excerpt from Laney, "Infonomics posits that information should be considered a new asset class in that it has measurable economic value and other properties that qualify it to be accounted for and administered as any other recognized type of asset—and that there are significant strategic, operational and financial reasons for doing so."

Let me add some context, if you have a mobile workforce in the field and you know the following real-time information:

  • Location
  • Job status
  • Skills and qualifications
  • Inventory
  • Equipment
  • Costs (hourly wage)

Then you can make some important decisions as to how you can optimally schedule and utilize your workforce.  In contrast, if you don't have real-time knowledge of the six points listed above, you cannot.  There are significant competitive values to this real-time information.  Laney's article explores how you can measure that value.

Once you have placed a value on real-time information, then you can determine an ROI for developing and implementing a system that supports the use of real-time information.  I see this a lot when discussing mobile workforce scheduling solutions.  Many organizations simply do not have the IT systems in place that can support real-time scheduling based on real-time information (location, job status, etc.).  This is a limitation.  This prevents them from transforming their company into a real-time enterprise and effectively competing with companies that are.

************************************************************* 

Kevin Benedict, Mobile Industry Analyst, Mobile Strategy Consultant and SAP Mentor Alumnus
Visit MobileEnterpriseStrategies.com
Follow me on Twitter @krbenedict
Join the SAP Enterprise Mobility and Sybase Unwired Platform Gro ups
Read The Mobility News Weekly
Full Disclosure: I am an independent mobility analyst, consultant and blogger. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.

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