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Mobile Information Systems
Volume 2015 (2015), Article ID 372315, 8 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2015/372315
Research Article

Mobile Applications for Knowledge Workers and Field Workers

1University of Duisburg-Essen, Forsthausweg 2, 47057 Duisburg, Germany
2Jacobs University Bremen, Campus Ring 1, 28759 Bremen, Germany

Received 3 September 2013; Accepted 24 February 2014

Academic Editor: David Taniar

Copyright © 2015 Stefan Stieglitz et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

In recent years, the diffusion of mobile applications (mobile apps) has risen significantly. Nowadays, mobile business apps are strongly emerging in business, enhancing productivity and employees’ satisfaction, whilst the usage of customized individual enterprise apps is still an exception. Standardized business apps enable basic functionalities, for example, mobile data storage and exchange (e.g., Dropbox), communication (e.g., Skype), and other routine processes, which support mobile workers. In addition, mobile apps can, for example, increase the flexibility of mobile workers by easing the access to firm’s information from outside the enterprise and by enabling ubiquitous collaboration. Hence, mobile apps can generate competitive advantages and can increase work efficiency on a broad scale. But mobile workers form no coherent group. Our research reveals, based on two case studies, that they can be clustered into two groups: knowledge workers and field workers. Knowledge workers and field workers fulfill different tasks and work in different environments. Hence, they have different requirements for mobile support. In this paper we conclude that standardized mobile business apps cannot meet the different requirements of various groups of mobile workers. Task- and firm-specific (individualized) requirements determine the specification, implementation, and application of mobile apps.