Tag: Mobile Device Management
Posted by Kelly Ungs
As IT organizations everywhere are restructuring their budgets for 2013, figuring out where their company should be spending and how much, it’s no secret that one of the areas that will require some careful consideration is BYOD. While there is certainly not a “one size fits all” approach, with clear-cut benefits to guide your organization’s decision on whether or not to support personal devices, there are certainly many aspects and even myths to mull over.
In the spirit of the holiday season (and finalizing IT spending for next year), I’ve made a naughty and nice list, which takes a quick look at a few pain points and things to look forward to, as you work toward implementing or fine-tuning a BYOD policy within your organization.
Hidden Costs: On the surface, BYOD comes across as a cost cutter, with the $70-ish per month required to operate the device falling to the end user. What organizations need to remember is that increased personal devices translates to increased mobile device management, which means you’ll need to invest in a reliable toolset to power and manage your BYOD environment – whether that means hiring additional manpower, or deploying an MDM solution that will help you safely and efficiently roll out your BYOD program.
Security Scares: As personal devices will consistently come and go, in and out of the corporate network, BYOD reasonably presents some concerning potential scenarios, such as external exposure of confidential emails, contact lists or sensitive company financial information. While IT can certainly take steps to safeguard information once the device is known to be lost, many employees don’t set up a password to secure their device (in a recent survey, only 29 percent of users reported they set passwords to keep their devices locked), and several minutes or hours can pass before he or she knows the device is lost. Employees holding out hope that their device will be found may even wait days before reporting the device missing to IT.
Too Many Toys to Track: Shiny new devices are popping up all the time, especially around the holidays. This can be especially problematic as it seems employees are walking in with new tablets right after IT has made a buying decision on which operating systems they’ll support with their MDM solution. IT has a tough decision to make: “should I focus on keeping up with the latest and greatest to satisfy all of my end users personal preferences, or only support a select number of systems and hope my end users don’t attempt to connect unsecured devices to corporate resources?”
Hidden Savings: After carefully considering the total cost of ownership of mobile assets, some companies have actually managed to capitalize on their decision to allow BYOD, such as Cisco, which recently told InformationWeek they’ve been able to reduce costs per user by 30 percent, despite a 98-percent increase in device count.
Controlled Productivity: While there are certainly risks associated with granting employees access to company info while on the
go, mobile device management has also come a long way in enabling IT to govern when, where and who can access the files needed to get the work done. Most MDM solutions now come with policy-setting features that allow IT to grant or disable access to specific applications or files. With devices that enter the enterprise without IT knowledge or consent, there are also default policies that can be applied to give the unknown device basic access to company Wi-Fi but maybe not email or enterprise apps.
You Can Satisfy the Majority: While some organizations may deem it more productive to support each employee’s individual device preference, most companies run a successful BYOD program by managing the most popular operating systems – such as iOS, Android and Windows. A quick survey of your employees’ device OS “wish lists” should help you identify the majority rule for your company.
As you can see, there are opportunities and concerns associated with several, if not all aspects of BYOD. The key to rolling out your BYOD plan for 2013 is in evaluating how your company could potentially benefit versus how much you’d need to invest to maintain the benefits and safeguard against the potential pain points. Are the benefits really “nice,” or could they end up turning “naughty?”
Posted by Brandon Hill
As I mentioned in “Cutting to the Chase: Let’s Talk MDM“, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to find thoughtful, insightful discussions on mobile device management, enterprise mobility, etc. With a few exceptions, such as The Enterprise Mobility Forum, and a few LinkedIn groups, it’s hard to find discussions that aren’t bogged down by this individual pitching that solution, and so on.
We want to change that. I invite you to check out our LinkedIn Group where we want to create a community of enterprise mobility professionals connecting, and talking all things “mobile ecosystem”. We filter who can and cannot join, ensuring that anyone who is simply there to promote their solution will either be rejected, or removed. The hope is that you can talk shop, ask questions, and/or learn new technologies without spending an afternoon weeding through spam.
Take a look. Don Osburn posted a follow-up to his post on Tuesday, that I think you’ll find interesting. Feel free to submit your own discussions, polls, questions, etc., and rememeber to pass it along to anyone else you think would be interested.
Have a great Labor Day weekend!
Posted by Jay Cichosz
Every now and then, we have the opportunity to tell new customers and/or Partners about what it means to provide solutions for the entire mobile ecosystem, and it struck me that it might make a great topic for a blog post.
When you look at our solutions, the best way to visualize the “how do they all work together?” question is to envision an enterprise within the four walls. Let’s say that the enterprise is divided into the following “sections”, all of which come with their own needs and requirements.
In every Warehouse, applications are being run for a variety of tasks. This is where we begin our circle of mobile ecosystem solutions, via Studio and TE which allow organizations to deliver the aforementioned applications to mobile assets, such as handheld computers. From there, it’s possible that some of those applications are web-based, and therefore require an Industrial Browser or Velocity to render and properly run them. For further productivity, many companies are now looking to voice-enable these very same applications, which as you’ve seen in our Goya Foods video, our Speakeasy product does quite well.
Let’s continue to our next “section”.
Good afternoon everyone! Wanted to share something on remote service connectivity. Aberdeen Group’s research report, “The Real-Time Service Enterprise: Leveraging Remote Connectivity to Drive Service Performance,” lists the key items that differentiate Best-in-Class service providers from the Average and Laggard providers. In particular, the report points out the aggressive growth of remote connectivity technology that Best-in-Class service providers are leveraging to, A) stay better connected to their remote assets, which in turn helps them to, B) provide better customer service at lower costs.
What is interesting to note, (that is not really addressed in the report), is the additional and/or modified management requirements necessary to control all these new remotely connected technologies. In other words, it’s great to have a lot of new technology closely connecting field service to the home office in real-time. However, the emergence of these new devices and technology bring with them an added requirement for additional monitoring and management of the devices themselves (My smart-device allows the home office to monitor inventory control in real-time. But…. who’s monitoring the smart-device??).
As companies move forward with real-time, remote-management of field service assets they (and their management partners), would be well-advised to focus on remote management of the field-service technology as well. The ability to remote control into a field-service device (as an example), ensures maximum uptime and usage of that device, which only enhances the real-time aspect of the total field service.
Mobile Device Management is the new “hot” thing in the enterprise, especially with all the talk of Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) policies. We’ve recently posted on BYOD, as have many others. But, I think it’s important to remember that there are other important considerations to think about. Primarily, the cost consideration before you decide on a Mobile Device Management (MDM) solution.
Research shows that cost is a major concern for those implementing MDM, which makes sense, because any solution has to be worth it! At the core, MDM is focused on reducing the total cost of ownership (TCO) of mobile assets. A huge factor in these “costs of ownership” is security. Since MDM solutions entered the space, securing information that travels to and from the device, and information that is on the device, has been crucial. If information is ever compromised, companies can lose thousands to millions of dollars. With the BYOD phenomena, the need to control this “cost” has been thrown in the limelight.
Prospects for MDM also now have new delivery options available, which can factor into the cost of a solution. We’ve written and presented extensively on how your cost considerations should match the delivery method that best suites your budget. For some, that’s a SaaS model (low monthly subscription), for others it an on-site install (more investment required up front). Either way, it’s important to know that the installation method you chose will impact costs.
If you’d like to discuss other cost considerations, feel free to email me or discuss in the comments below. Additionally, if you’re interested in TCO and the return on investment for MDM solutions, I’m happy to provide you with our Avalanche ROI Calculator. Just put your info in the “Ask the Advisor” fields to the left with “ROI Calculator” in the comment box, and I’ll follow-up with you.
Still in its infancy the B.Y.O.D concept has a lot of companies and influencers “land grabbing” to be the leader in providing a solution that solves the inherent risks when you allow employee devices into the work place. As we are in the MDM market we have our opinions on some of the top things IT managers need to consider from a management perspective.
One of the things companies need to know is simply what is on each phone that could cause a threat. This can be a bigger concern with Android more than iOS because Android phones are running different versions of its OS. With iOS, if there is a threat from an app then it will likely affect all iOS devices. With Android you need to narrow it down to the phone, OS and where they got the app.
Another consideration is email provisioning and policies, because a lot of security issues come from email. A lot of employees are just connecting to their company’s exchange server, but IT managers need to be proactive and know who is connecting so they can make sure the phone can be wiped if they leave or lose the smartphone/tablet.
Finally, companies should consider creating a policy or some strict requirements for B.Y.O.D. For example, IT should consider banning phones which have been jailbroken. Those phones can introduce more vulnerability into your network, and while it is the employee’s device, it’s still your network.
What considerations would you add? Post them in the comments below, or start a new discussion about this or any mobile ecosystem topic in our LinkedIn group.
Posted by Brandon Hill
Healthcare, healthcare, healthcare. It’s like the mobile industry’s own Marcia Brady these days, as more and more attention is being given to mHealth. Just yesterday, we posted an interesting article about what happens when doctors lose their smart devices. But, healthcare mobility issues go beyond losing devices and extends to much higher-level mobility strategy. In May 2010, Gartner’s John Lovelock stated that healthcare CIOs were lagging when it came to having a sound strategy for enterprise mobility in place. CIOs stated that they were hoping one mobile platform or OS would emerge for management purposes. While no single platform has emerged as the clear winner, things are changing when it comes to mobility in healthcare.
“Mobile is certainly still one [area of health IT] that needs to be on that list of what’s coming. It’s here, but it’s still coming. We are just seeing the beginning of that. This is going to be something that is going to become much more significant,” said HIMSS CEO H. Stephen Lieber in an interview with MobiHealthNews.
We’ve mentioned that there doesn’t seem to be one clear platform winner, but Apple’s iPad is really making a big case for its place in the healthcare mobile ecosystem. According to an article in Wired, the Veterans Administration is looking to deploy 100,000 iPads across 152 locations and with the announcement of the iPad 3, CIOs will need to assess where it fits within their mobile ecosystem. Once they assess where it fits in, the bigger question becomes, “How do we manage it?”
For obvious reasons, security is a big issue in the healthcare mobile ecosystem and management extends beyond the physical device. As the BYOD phenomenon spills over into the healthcare sector, employees want their own devices to have network access. While the iPad and other slick handheld products get most of the attention with healthcare mobility, CIOs can’t forget about the management of other endpoints that are in the ecosystem: printers, ruggedized handhelds, routers, access points, etc.
If you’re an IT professional in the healthcare field, are you mindful to buy and consider products that can manage multiple platforms and OSes? Do you think multiple platform management is important? We’d love to hear your opinion.