In this digital age, do you feel you have been living a double life? On one hand, you're a consumer enjoying the convenience of spectacular user apps. On the other hand, you're an employee in an organization struggling with poorly made mobile apps with limited functionality, and bad UI.
The IT folks at the US $6.7 billion (about Rs 40,200 crore) Mahindra Group were aware of this gross contradiction. So when Mahindra & Mahindra’s core IT team and Bristlecone, its wholly-owned subsidiary, decided to build a mobile app in May last year, the company’s aim was to effectively mobilize each and every Mahindra employee with a mobile app that offered its employees, the best of both worlds.
The company had three active portals: MConnect, the Intranet Portal which informs on the latest Mahindra updates; The Rise Portal, the Mahindra Group platform that creates better cross-business engagement among employees, and an Employee Portal that enables transactions from various internal systems such as expense reimbursements, payroll, travel, and leave approvals among others.
The mobile app, christened Me Connect, integrates the three portals and provides a single gateway which can be accessed through a mobile device. The mobile app can be accessed on Android-based phones, iPhones and the iPad.
“It’s now all available on the palm of your hand and can be accessed on the run,” says V S Parthasarthy, group CIO, Mahindra Group.
Me Connect is a bouquet of over 70 apps built using a blend of multiple technologies from Native, Phonegap, SAP Fiori and integrated with SAP and SharePoint.
For instance, the Me Connect app allows an employee to check company updates, connect to news apps, and browse social media apps. In case of an emergency, an executive can choose from various hospitals listed on the app and look for directions on the maps while driving to one of the hospitals.
Since the app is integrated with the company's SAP portal in the backend, an M&M executive can instantly browse for passport information, frequent flier number, CTC details, PF balance, and leave balance among other things, on the app. He can perform business transactions such as approve leave approvals and claim requests. The mobile app, integrated with the travel agent's site, also allows the executive to book tickets ‘on the run’.
“Our goal was to focus on enabling people to rise through solutions that power mobility, drive rural prosperity, enhance urban lifestyles and increase business efficiency,” says Parthasarthy.
The development and execution of the app took a mere 10 months and has over 4000 active users from M&M. The company is still in the process of integrating all the employee portals across the Mahindra Group. “In the next few months, our vision is to surge adoption of mobility within the entire Mahindra group,” says Parthasarthy.
Shubhra Rishi is a special correspondent. Send your feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org.