The results of the 2015 IDG Enterprise Building the Mobile Enterprise Survey came out not long ago. The topic of this year’s study revolved around the top mobile priorities in business as well as the influence of emerging mobile tech on enterprise. This should come as no surprise: The majority of enterprises polled put mobile and mobile security as their highest priorities and concerns. What else came out of this study?
What are top mobile priorities (according to the survey)?
This IDG survey recruited 510 respondents in various IT management roles. Participants gave their responses to a set of 33 questions. Given the sample size, the results should be pretty telling of IT strategic trends. Key highlights from the analysis of the collected data include:
- Unsurprisingly, respondents’ greatest worry regarding mobility is that of security (54% overall). There is a difference in concern across business sizes – security is a more pressing issue among enterprises (63%) relative to SMBs (48%).
- For 64% of those IT managers surveyed, mobile is a critical/high priority on the business technology agenda.
- Key drivers of respondents’ mobile investments consist of:
- The desire to improve internal communication (68%);
- The desire to retain customers (62%); and
- The need to increase the speed of decision-making (60%).
- 49% of the organizations to which respondents belong will boost investment to bolster additional Wi-Fi network capability expressly to accommodate mobile devices. That said, internal network reliability is low on the list of challenges.
- Finally, mobile device management (MDM) and mobile application management (MAM) tools are increasingly (but gradually) being used to secure mobile data. Furthermore, a sizable volume of MDM (38%) and MAM (27%) solutions are based in the cloud.
What questions should you be asking about your enterprise mobility?
So what does all of this mean for you? Well, to begin, you know that your competitors and partners will most likely be putting a lot of focus and money on mobility. That most likely means that you will as well, or that you should (if only to keep up with your peers). Because of that, here are five questions you need to ask.
1. How secure is your organization’s mobile devices and services?
Let’s start with the big one since security is on most people’s minds. There is no shortage of security breaches possible. Worse yet, many organizations do not have enough manpower or tools to really tighten security on phones or other mobile devices and services. You have to ask yourself whether you belong to one of those organizations. If you are, you have to determine how to adjust your policies and budget to increase security. It’s better to spend the money on this now, rather than pay for the fallout later.
2. Do you know how many mobile devices you have?
Mobile is a priority, and costs are as well. It also sounds like most places will be buying more in the near future. To keep costs down, it’s important to know what you already have so that you don’t needlessly replace items that can still be used.
3. Do you know what each employee is using? Do you know why he’s using it?
Don’t forget: Mobile devices are popular and useful because of apps. What you also need to remember is that apps can (and often do) cost money, can cause massive security breaches, and might be completely irrelevant to your employee’s job. If you manage your company’s IT, you have to be constantly vigilant that no one on staff is doing something other than work while on your dime, wasting money on apps, or, worst of all, becoming a liability to your company’s wellbeing.
4. How many service providers do you currently have to manage?
You should find out how many providers are servicing your mobile needs. You also need to know the terms of their service. Not knowing either or both will cause you a lot of practical and financial headaches.
5. Are you trying to manage it all internally, or are you using professional solutions/services?
Knowing that more mobile devices are coming, and that they represent security risks if poorly-handled, you have to decide something important: Will you manage all mobile devices and services in-house, or will you outsource this activity to qualified experts? This question of enterprise mobility management is important - think carefully about your answer.
To us, the answer is (obviously) simple: You should use dedicated expert solutions and services to manage your IT and telecom assets. There are many benefits to this choice. To begin, outside help will be specialized in doing this management – they’ll be able to track mobility much better than you. Also, because they’re doing this task, your limited pool of IT personnel resources will be free to do other important IT tasks. Finally, they’ll have a much more accurate record and inventory of your devices, services, and contracts. You’ll save a lot of money by avoiding billing discrepancies and from repurchasing items you already have. Importantly, because you know what you have, it becomes that much easier to secure everything.