Since I last blogged on the topic of business apps for the enterprise, much has happened at Cisco. As you know from reading my earlier updates, we are developing an entire range of helpful and easy-to-use business apps – powerful applications that accelerate employee productivity. We’ve made much progress since June.
For openers, we’ve announced a new name for our productivity-enhancing apps, called Cisco EasyApps @Work internally. And to make it easy for employees to identify the apps most relevant to them, we’re launching apps based on an employee’s role, organization or location.
Several new role-based apps for our managers and engineers are now available. These include the following new and enhanced EasyApps:
- My Team – an app for people managers to easily access information on compensation, performance, and other details for all employees on their team.
- Manager Tools – another app for people managers to find all the resources they need, categorized with clear icons in a simplified user interface. This application also now captures and displays metrics for the most frequently used tools, and has a ‘My Tools’ tab to easily organize those tools.
- Engineering Bug Social – a new app for engineers that eliminates the need to send countless emails to track action items within a team while enabling users to easily search bugs in the same application. Think of it as the one-stop destination where engineers and managers can view and search known defects.
- Product Quality – another app for engineers that displays the top four quality metrics for engineering products: customer satisfaction scores, software defects per million running hours, service requests in ratio to total install base, and customer-identified defects. Also offers executive visibility of metrics to drive quality and accountability within Engineering.
And we have also targeted a bundle of travel apps for our travel-heavy road warriors which are designed as super time-savers. These include:
- My Expenses – enables employees to do their expense reports in a fraction of the time, itemizing reports by hotel room, car rental and meal attendees, and take advantage of the effortless addition of AMEX and non-AMEX transactions from mobile devices.
- Hotel Directory – enables travelers to find the closest Cisco-preferred hotel to their client location by using the Google maps tool in the application.
- My Approvals – enables managers to view pre-trip travel and Paid Time Off approval requests in a single view within WebEx Social or from select mobile devices.
- World Clock – allows employees to check local time in eight locations and quickly modify them when crossing multiple time zones.
For all employees, we also offer My Employment Info – this app allows workers to access their Cisco employment data related to their employment history, all in one place.
The more I talk to customers, the more interest I’ve found in the area of enterprise apps. So, a few words of guidance:
Simplify the apps process. Make it easy for your employees to find apps and services that can simplify business processes and increase productivity by creating your own app center where you can house a combination of your own and third-party applications.
At Cisco, we think it’s important that we don’t micromanage our employees’ need to collaborate in a mobile way – the corporate app store will not be the only app repository that employees can pull from. Instead, the vision for the corporate store is to be the source for employees to find recommended applications. Here they can tailor their mobile experience with varying apps, and can use them to be more efficient and productive – whether it’s submitting business trip expenses from an airport or taking a Jabber video call from the sidelines of a soccer game, or continuing that WebEx meeting as you shift from one location to another.