A few weeks ago we were approached by a company in Dubai to see if we could assist with a relative complexity mobile application. After initial consultation we learnt that the company was already busy with a mobility project in another responsibility area and as such all available resources were already consumed on that project.
The app was to assist with asset verification which is currently performed with the use of an old scanner and a custom written application which allows the count to be performed but the scanner is not integrated to any wireless architecture and as a result there are manual steps required to get the required data to and from the scanner. The company are using SAP as their ERP system. Their asset verification activity is done yearly at the end of the year.
Due to the timelines involved we were given a directive that the app should focus primarily on functionality rather than frills.
Their asset verification process on SAP is a custom development whereby assets can be counted in a similar fashion to inventory. All assets are counted and the count results are recorded to ensure accuracy of assets in the SAP system as well as accuracy of physical location. The count also verifies the assignment of the asset to the cost centers and people responsible for them across the locations in Dubai.
TOKN was challenged to see if the platform could live up to the claim to be able to deliver applications in a shortened timeframe on multiple device platforms. TOKN was tasked with the responsibility to create the Asset Count mobile application to be used for the yearly asset count. This activity would also serve as a comparison to see if the turnaround time on mobility projects really depends on the technology being used.
Since TOKN has a platform, which enables a rapid application development and deployment, it was believed that it could assist in boosting business confidence in IT by delivering the needed application in a relatively short timeframe.
The directive was very concise; the application needed to be delivered as fast as possible and it needed to work on the rugged devices already procured to be used with the other mobility application already in process. The app needed to be able to work in an offline capacity since only the HQ location had access to wireless network. The rugged devices procured were confirmed to be Cruiser H9 devices, which run Android operating system.
The technical aspects of the requirement, which we considered in accordance to the directive, included the following:
The TOKN concept started in 2012 with an idea that mobility in the corporate world would face many obstacles, which are not present in the consumer world. Mobility in the enterprise would need to evolve and bring a few key concepts to the equation.
The solution was to implement the TOKN Mobility platform. The result of this is a highly efficient application development and deployment cycle. The simplicity means that business value is immediately evident and this greatly improves the user experience and confidence.
The required hardware was delivered and the installation occurred on 27th September. The fully functional application was ready for internal testing within two weeks. Please also note that the solution was deployed and demonstrated on Android, Windows Phone and iOS devices with the included barcode scanning functionality on all the mobile platforms.
When we showed the functionality to the Head of IT, the comment was, “This is amazing! The agility is unbelievable! You guys have really delivered according to your promise and in line with your claim that the platform is so agile that the timeline for mobile application deployment is drastically reduced”.
When we showed that the application is then also available on Windows Phone, and iOS they had this to say: “You mean to tell me that by default, any application which you put on the TOKN platform is available on all three mobile platforms without needing to do any programming on those platforms, this is exactly what we need and what other companies would need”.
What we did:
The solution utilizes SAP and the TOKN platform, which is proprietary. This reduces the landscape complication and since the platform takes care of the integration with SAP and the communication with mobile devices it means that the time to develop and deploy apps is greatly reduced. The applications are created centrally on the TOKN software and then deployed to multiple mobile devices. The technological benefit is the speed at which we are able to develop new apps because there is no need for development on iOS, Android or Windows Phone. Deploying apps to user devices is also as simple as a button click.
The application layout was customised to include the company logo. This is standard functionality available in TOKN platform. A menu item for assets was added to the screen menu.
As a result of what we did, we received additional scope in HR applications for leave request creation and approval, which we have completed and we will shortly begin with even more scope to assist in high volume transaction areas of Time and Attendance exception handling as well as system authorisation request approvals.