Retrenchment, recession and reduced spending – signs of an economy under pressure, but, it would seem from research that South African companies are fighting back.
Local ICT managed services provider and leading infrastructure management firm Integr8 says there is clear evidence of exponential growth across multiple sectors, based on increased investment in mobile commerce technologies and platforms.
Frost & Sullivan’s analysis of the retail sector, published in regional media, notes that cloud-based services, managed services and cellular connectivity will represent the baseline of IT spend in retail – the figure of R1,8-billion in ICT spend by 2019, according to a report published by IT-Online.
“There is a realisation among most companies today, irrespective of sector/ industry, that mobile commerce should be central to any ICT development strategy,” says Lance Fanaroff, joint CEO of Integr8.
“Mobile commerce technology are allowing companies to make realtime transformative decisions on sale, retail, merchandising, big data, trading and security,” adds Fanaroff.
This sounds very good but, as Fanaroff adds, these type of platforms are not considered ‘bells & whistles’ – they are having a real and measurable impact on sales and revenue, operational efficiency and controls.
“We continue to see evidence of this impact on clients who confirm a reduction in costs, streamlining admin, and boosting compliance, all while improving service levels and the client user experience,” says Fanaroff.
Integr8’s message to the market is that mobile commerce platforms are enabling companies to take advantage of big data analysis, which, as Fanaroff suggests, is a critical part of almost all leading, sustainable and successful companies today.
Specifically, as Integr8 points out, these strategies are finding application in businesses across a number of influential markets including retail, security, IT & telecoms, sales & logistics, banking, automotive and hospitality.
As Fanaroff says, these industries have different requirements and dynamics; but essentially, they all require advanced technology to assist in their evolution to digital-based organisations.
Mobile commerce platforms are not just a ‘nice to have’, but will be essential for the sustainability and success of almost all businesses in the future. And the future is happening now.