The cool thing about customers: You develop tools, they buy them… and then they completely blow out of the water any prediction or prescription you had about what they should do with them. They solve some of the toughest problems, deliver incredible results, and usually do it in tight timeframes on shoestring budgets. It’s humbling.

This is especially true in mobile. On the vendor side, we don’t always appreciate what our customers are going through and the daily miracles they perform. So let’s talk about it.

First off, all eyes are on organizations’ mobility team these days. With C-level and even board visibility, enterprise mobility projects are, for good or for bad, in the limelight. Every purchase decision is highly charged, often political and usually involve prioritizing the needs of many different teams within the organization. Everybody wants in on the action. The customers we speak with are often trying to balance a BYOD program with mobile apps, custom app development, and integration work…not to mention the CIO’s pet iPad project!

Second, the mobile team is charged with generating ROI. Not just making users more productive, which is a given (and even if it weren’t, users would demand mobility anyway). But putting mobile to work and having mobile processes change the way the organization operates—for the better! Think about some of our customers and the cool things they’re doing with mobile:

A home healthcare organization is running its mission critical operations on Samsung Galaxy Tabs, making its clinical app, Homecare Homebase, available to its mobile caregivers. When the nurses and therapists visit a patient, they access the app on their tablet to complete the visit. The app lets them access patient data, guides them through a series of best practice-based steps, and enables them to enter data about the patient’s status and visit and sync that data back to the home office.

A luxury resort hotel is changing the way it does business with mobile. Beyond a host of iPad initiatives, the hotel’s valet team is equipped with Apple iPods to help the team improve a critical customer experience. When customers leave the hotel, the valet at the kiosk in front of the hotel scans the customer’s ticket using a barcode scanner affixed to the iPod and then uses a third-party app called AutoValet to locate the car and alert the closest valet to bring it. The hotel has reported a reduction in customer wait times of up to 90%.

An international airfreight logistics company has armed its flight crews around the world with tablets. From its headquarters in North America, the company manages its global flight crew schedule, wakes up crewmembers wherever they are in the world, and ensures compliance by making sure that crews are where they need to be at exactly the right time for the company’s complex and interdependent logistics business to work.

A national chain of restaurants is using Apple iPads across North America to check-in guests, let customers know when their tables are ready, and help dining staffs optimize seating allocation. This leads to more table turns every day in every restaurant, increases asset utilization (square footage, tables), and delivers hard ROI. The restaurant chain also uses those iPads to secure manager communications, deliver employee training, and distribute proprietary recipes to kitchen staff.

And finally, often times they’re rolling out these complex and valuable mobile initiatives while also running a comprehensive BYOD program. A leading film production company has managed a phased BYOD deployment for all of its employees who wish to use their own devices while also making iPads available to script collaborators and developing a proprietary film script collaboration app.

Impressive stuff, right? We think so. Have an interesting use case that folks should hear about? Share your story!