Redefining Enterprise Mobility - Beyond the Device

Doing more research on enterprise mobility on my "day off". A true geek at heart. lol. Today I ran across an interesting article by Gartner published back in 2012, Enterprise Mobility and Its Impact on IT. While the article is over three years old, it still holds some validity on our present situation. I also find it interesting in that it is a window as to where we were at three years ago and how far we have come in the arena of bringing business online and mobile. There are so many pieces to this puzzle and how business has had to adapt to the every changing trends of devices, apps, security, compliance, and the list goes on.

The Gartner article pointed out that the tablet market did not exist prior to early 2010. Basically before the introduction of the iPad by Apple. I found this fact particularly interesting in that was only five years ago! Incredible how that single device, now made by many other companies, has worked its way into so many parts of our personal and business lives. How did we ever live without these devices before?

Life certainly existed and in fact thrived, but one fact remains. Life before mobile was a very different world that moved at a much slower pace that it does today. Business for one is the huge winner in this space with instant communication, and exchange of ideas and data in real time.

And now we have matured with mobile devices to the point that we can see that these devices are only one access point to the larger river of mobile applications, social media, cloud computing, mobile payment, interconnected mobile collaboration, just to name a few. We are living in a time that was purely science fiction back when I was a kid watching Star Trek. Talking to the home office on a small device that is pinned to shirt? This was a fantasy 30 years ago. Now we just take it for granted.

And the pace of innovation continues to accelerate on a daily basis. And this fast pace of innovation has pushed IT departments to the edge of their capabilities of management.

From the Gartner article:

Unfortunately, IT is burdened by an overwhelming array of regulatory, compliance, security, privacy, expense, organizational, policy and legacy technology constraints that dramatically shapes IT's response to these changes. Simply put, the innovation rate in mobile devices, social software and cloud computing is accelerating faster than the enterprise adaptation rate. IT organizations that fail to adapt to this new reality will lose their relevance in the era of pervasive mobility.

I highlighted the last sentence because I think this is a key point.

It literally is survival of the technological fittest. Those that can adapt and keep up with the change, will be the winners. Those that do not, well we all know what happened to the dinosaurs.

Another interesting article I ran across this morning on Wired Magazine website, had a good breakdown of how enterprises are dealing with the break neck speed of innovation and change.

But as more companies deploy Mobile Device Management (MDM) and now Enterprise Mobility Management (EMM) as part of their mobility architecture, this will drive the adoption of enterprise mobility beyond the initial stages that most organizations are today.

According to Gartner, mobile is among the top three CIO spending priorities in 2014.

To enable full mobile productivity, organizations now seek more complete offerings that let them flexibly leverage application and content management, secure email and productivity apps as well. On a strategic level, they now think about mobility in terms of mobile workspaces that provide access to apps, desktops, data and services anywhere, on any device, over any network — a trend with important implications for providers and customers alike.

And again, I highlighted the key point in this part of the Wired article. Devices are one access point to the ever growing stream of apps, data and communication. Our maturation in the mobile world of business enterprise continues, but now is becoming more clear that it is here to stay and will become an ever more constant in our business and personal lives.

Remember when the world wide web first became available? I don't know about you, but I was thinking, what is this all about? And how do I use it. It was like a maze that I was constantly getting so lost in that I would just close the browser. And now? The power of all the collective knowledge of the human race at your finger tips. Who wants to go back to 1990? Not me.

So my point is this. We are in the beginning, the dawn if you will of enterprise mobility. Sometimes it is hard to imagine what is all means and where it is going. But in the end, I believe that we are heading into something really powerful and really exciting. And in the end, you either get onboard and enjoy the ride, or sit on the sidelines and watch the bus go by.

I've gone over the benefits of bringing a business 100% mobile in previous website posts here. The brief is:

  • Cost efficiency

  • Reduction of maintenance requirements

  • Flexibility and scalability of resources

  • On demand user administration

  • 24/7 user support

  • Off-site backup of critical data

  • Regular maintenance and software upgrades

  • Employee mobility anywhere, anytime

  • Freedom to focus on core business

At this point, it is worth the time and effort for IT departments to take a hard look at this opportunity, and at a minimum do some cost/productivity comparisons. We are definitely past the days of early adoption, with many larger companies now taking the steps to move in the direction of cloud-based desktops, apps and file storage. Hensel Phelps, Turner Construction are a couple of our client names that come to mind.

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