As CIO for Accenture, Andrew Wilson leads the global IT operations and drives the digital agenda of a $32.9 billlion consulting giant. Wilson has focused on making this already strong brand a mobile-first organization. He shares some advice on the why and how of the mobile-first transition, and a look at what's next.
The Enterprisers Project (TEP): When did Accenture begin the transition to a mobile-first organization? What was the driving factor behind that decision?
Wilson: Ten years ago, you couldn’t do much more than send an email over your phone. But now, as consumers, we’ve grown accustomed to using mobile apps, and this has extended into the work environment. As part of this, going mobile-first has been imperative. Our current workforce is about 70 percent millennials – they expect applications to be available on any device, at any time.
Accenture not only recognized this trend early on, but also understood the significant impact of creating a mobile-first work experience. A mobile platform that provides seamless, intuitive services across the enterprise can increase productivity and agility by allowing our employees the freedom to work on their terms. We started on this journey several years ago. We recognized that we could improve our employee’s work experience by mirroring the technology they use as consumers.
TEP: What indicators showed you it was time to go mobile first?
Wilson: We know our people and our culture. With so many millennials, we knew there was always interest to bring their consumer lifestyle to work. Our mobile first strategy is just one piece of our digital journey. We began with a number of our enterprise social collaboration apps and given the response, knew we were on the right track.
TEP: How did you identify areas where mobile strategy would have a big impact?
Wilson: We’ve coordinated with our leadership and other stakeholders to develop the company’s mobile strategy. A key part of Accenture’s journey to becoming a digital business is improving the employee experience by bringing mobility to Accenture people in the same ways that they experience as consumers. In doing this, our people can expect to conduct business on their mobile devices in simple and productive ways. Our first apps were fairly straightforward – being able to book travel and submit expenses from your mobile, things like that.
TEP: What is next on your horizon in terms of mobile implementation?
Wilson: As we grow our library of apps, which currently numbers more than 75, teams are using mobile tools to find, connect, collaborate, and share. Their ability to learn, grow, and deliver at speed and scale is radically enhanced. Across Accenture, we believe that we are well on the way toward building a fully mobile, digitally enabled global workforce. We’re moving at hyper-scale and know we’ll never be done.