In this third of multiple assessments of mobility and RoI, three examples from logistics/distribution are described. Logistics and distribution are obvious candidates for improvement via mobility, because by their nature they involve movement:
- All new franchisees of a chain of gourmet stores now receive an iPad containing training materials, store management tools, the ability to connect with suppliers as well as access to the franchisor’company’s intranet and web-based tools. Franchisees are given the iPads, in a sort of ‘reverse-BYOD’ program. The iPads come fully loaded from the franchisor. They are used in the training leading up to a store opening day, as well as for the subsequent day-to-day operations. Every iPad comes with an array of customized tools for each franchise’s manager and are even set them up so there is a quick link to the franchisor’s social media channels. As a result, franchisees can see the latest on Twitter feeds, on Facebook page and on YouTube — all of which matter because the franchisor uploads photos of products, of franchisee restaurants, of employees and of customers — to give everyone promotion and a sense of culture. The iPads also offer one-click access to all of the franchisor’s web-based tools (which replaces having to go to and then sit at a PC). For the franchisor the direct savings come in eliminating printing, updating and delivering manuals — which used to amount to US$400 per franchise per year. Plus there are all the less tangible benefits delivered by being connected on a device that is mobile.
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