Tell me, who hasn’t observed this: Smartphones and tablets were first birthed into the consumer marketplace.
There, they were joyfully received. And just as quickly, it seemed, they were snapped up by the corporate world, where they wasted no time in changing that landscape in a number of radical and significant ways.
And today, there’s no doubt that the modern employee requires the ability to work wherever and whenever they want to. They demand the ability to be mobile at work.
There are two major technologies that enable this mobility. The first to come along was BYOD, where workers were enabled to Bring Their Own Devices to work, and conduct work functions on those devices. Although BYOD does bring a lot of good things to the table, the biggest issue with it is that of Security. There are many pieces that have to be in place for BYOD security to work properly — MAM, MDM, and more, which we’ll talk about later.
The other model that enabled mobility for enterprises is COPE, or Corporate Owned, Personally Enabled. With this, the corporation owns the devices, but opens it up for workers to use it in personal ways. In many instances, it works better than BYOD, especially for larger companies that require most of their employees to have mobile corporate connections. COPE offers better security for less money than BYOD; less legal liability, as a device can be wiped whenever a corporation wants to. It is, after all, owned by that organization. And IT is pleased, as COPE enables shared data, minutes and billing as well.
One or the other of these models — perhaps both — have to prevail in order for mobile device management to succeed.
The thing, though, is that corporate security will need to be maintained, regardless of which model is in place. This might be easier to accomplish with the COPE model, simply because only few models of devices will need to be supported. With BYOD, think of the millions of permutations of devices and operations systems that the average IT department would have to support — it would be a nightmare.
Parts of Corporate Security in a BYOD or COPE Environment
1. Enterprise Mobility Management
The goal of EMM, or Enterprise Mobility Management, is to enable your enterprise to have a workforce that can work from anywhere they want to. There are often things along the road that impede progress towards that goal, such as outdated infrastructure and legacy apps. Oftentimes, using Mobile Application Management (MAM), Mobile Device Management (MDM) and Mobile Content Management (MCM) aren’t enough by themselves. Keep an eye out for these things that might impede your progress, and don’t hesitate to get rid of them.
2. Mobile Device Management
Also known as MDM, this particular technology started the whole EMM movement. Although MDM is not as crucial today, it’s still needed. As BYOD continues to gain ground, MDM software continues to distribute data, applications, patches and configuration settings for mobile devices. In an ideal world, the MDM software would enable admins to watch over mobile devices just as they would desktop computers, and at the same time enable excellent performance for users.
3. Mobile Application Management
MAM enables IT to administer data and access among applications that run on mobile devices that are company-controlled. Unlocking the features of mobile applications and the ways to manage these applications becomes quite important as corporations discover more about how mobility speeds up the processes of business and helps to make employees even more productive.
But it’s important to note that mobile apps can’t just be legacy apps shoved into a mobile format. They have to be rewritten and reformatted in order to meet the explicit needs of mobile employees, and not only that, but be compatible with a variety of device manufacturers and OSes as well.
4. Mobile Content Management
MCM is typically used to protect sensitive data, and there are a lot of products available to do so. They range from the more consumer grade versions, such as Google Drive and Dropbox, but there are enterprise grade offerings as well, from WatchDox, Soonr, Accelion, Acronis and Box. There is a certain amount of containerization that MCM provides in order to protect sensitive data. This should grab center stage in every EMM strategy.
About the Author
Michelle Patterson is excited with the new technologies that are threatening to change the way we stay in touch and communicate, particular in business. She works with companies that are introducing these technologies to make understanding them easy for regular people.