Enterprise Mobility

From MDM to EMM, a Revolution Is Underway

Smartphones in the enterprise are now old news: it’s how to manage them that’s what everyone needs to be talking about today, and we’ve just released a new whitepaper on this topic.

Employers have long noticed that employees are happier and more productive when working on their own devices, and recognize the cost savings as well as improved work productivity and morale. More and more organizations are creating robust mobile environments that support employee choice. A report by The Center for Telecom Environment Management Standards shows that 78% of organizations allow employee-owned mobile devices in the business environment. And it’s not just BYOD, as employers rollout the latest models of smartphones as company-owned devices, they also need a way to manage and lockdown these devices.

Initially, companies embraced emergent Mobile Device Management (MDM) solutions to secure these new mobile devices, but they quickly realized that MDM alone wasn’t enough. What we’re seeing is the movement of BYOD policy towards the more recent Enterprise Mobility Management (EMM), and we’ve released a new whitepaper to provide a detailed explanation on this trend: EMM 101 – Why a complete EMM strategy is crucial in today’s mobile-first workplaceIt’s a great holiday read: take it with you to that beach, resort, family gathering your headed to! And, if you’re truly keeping abreast of the latest in mobile technology, we bet you’ll be reading it off your latest smartphone or tablet.

Photo Credit: Flickr Creative Commons

Photo Credit: Flickr Creative Commons

Mobile Management 1.0: Mobile Devices Management (MDM)

Mobile Device Management is an industry term for the administration of mobile devices, such as smartphones, tablets and laptops when linked to a corporate network.

Many companies are struggling to manage an increasingly complicated mix of employee-owned and corporate-provided devices while trying to standardize enterprise applications and workflows. Without additional headcount, training and other resources, IT staff will not be able to support these complex environments. To help overcome this challenge, IT is deploying mobile management software to protect their enterprise. This software allows administrators to manage mobile devices and content relatively easily. Traditionally, MDM allows admins to manage and secure mobile devices across multiple mobile service providers and operating systems. MDM is focused on the devices themselves. This was found to be limited, especially because most MDM services do not allow for content monitoring and application development.  The need for greater control of devices and their content and applications led to the development of a more comprehensive toolkit, Enterprise Mobility Management, or EMM.

Mobile Management 2.0: Enterprise Mobility Management (EMM)

Enterprise Mobility Management is the set of people, processes, and technology focused on managing the increasing array of mobile devices, wireless networks, and related services to enable broad use of mobile computing in a business context. This is an emerging discipline within the enterprise that has become increasingly prevalent over the past few years as major MDM providers sought to differentiate themselves by adding on more features to meet IT requirements.

EMM typically includes all of the standard MDM features, but is combined with additional security services and tools to create a more complete solution. This greater level of control and protection allows admins to manage devices, content and applications while keeping personal and business data separate. Now users can bring their own devices and not have to worry about mixing the two, or about giving their company control of personal data. The added features within EMM typically include utilities to monitor device usage, reporting of business intelligence and auditable logs, integration with system management tools and even the ability to develop compatible in-house apps.

Screen Shot 2014-12-10 at 3.21.34 PM

IT security professionals are largely warming up to MDM solutions. However, the range of mobile challenges listed previously requires a new, more comprehensive security framework – one that goes beyond the basic lock-and-wipe capabilities found in MDM solutions. EMM has emerged as the future of mobile management. In the meantime, MDM solutions that focus on device management are starting to grow into broader EMM solutions to better capture the mobile opportunity and provide more robust levels of support. Together, we believe that MDM and EMM solutions help mature overall mobile strategies. Read more in our newest whitepaper!

Is EMM the best option for BYOD policy? The future of this landscape is yet to be written. But it is clear that the growth of mobility has triggered rapid transformation of IT, and a revolution is underway.

Is your organization considering a mobile management strategy? What are the main challenges of determining the right enterprise mobility strategy for you? Comment below or tweet @getLua to let us know. 


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