Businesses need a stronger vision for a truly mobile workforce

Establishing a mobile workforce is all about strategy, writes SOTI's Nassar Hussain.

Employees are demanding a different experience and require new ways of working. At the centre of this shift is the mobile and IoT device; but European businesses are failing to place this at the heart of their technology strategies.

The compelling evidence speaks for itself: Gartner predicts a $2.5 million spend per minute on IoT and one million new IoT devices sold every hour by 2021.

So what is the main barrier holding businesses back from getting a competitive edge from mobility?

A failure of vision

Mobility is an essential enabler of digital transformation. Yet, when it comes to Enterprise Mobility Management (EMM) and Unified Endpoint Management (UEM), there is a lack of strategic planning among European businesses. In terms of implementing and utilising EMM solutions much of the enterprise focus has centred around how to manage and secure mobile devices at a basic level.

Recent research discovered 61 per cent of European businesses are making little to no progress towards mobility objectives, with a further 26 per cent yet to realise any value from mobility. This lack of recognition and appropriate response to changing user demands will impact an organisation’s productivity, dynamism, experience and competitiveness.

A lack of fundamentals

A failure of vision has also shown that a major part of the problem is businesses aren’t getting the fundamentals right. Around half of business managers haven’t grasped what devices they can use for work or how they can use them.

Furthermore, half of European businesses are failing to impose basic mobile device management to administer their smartphones, tablets and laptops. This raises concerns about the ability to combine people, processes and technology in an EMM solution.

To address this, businesses must ensure they not only have a vision, but the strategy and fundamentals in place to meet their employees’ expectations. This is a major cause for concern if enterprises are to create competitive advantages from mobility as it gives employees freedom, while also encouraging mobile working.

No top level understanding

A lack of vision is very much with Europe business leaders, who are failing to understand the strategic benefits of managing their mobile strategies and investment. The leaders in question have cited budgetary, security and privacy concerns as the main obstacle to their organisation realising value from EMM and UEM.

However, with better understanding of mobility at a top level, a business can implement the correct mobility strategy to combat these concerns and ensure its data and information is safe no matter what type of device and its location.

IT’s simple

Traditionally IT departments worked in silos. However with the rise in BYOD, they are now working with a varied range of devices not owned by the organisation. Therefore to see a mobility strategy put in place across an organisation, business leaders must have the vision to allow IT departments to take the lead.

IT departments must be involved at a closer level, supporting employees’ broad use of technology. In parallel, they must extricate themselves from old corporate silos and help to design systems with mobility at their core. In the fast pace of today’s digital revolution, business leaders should engage IT managers and mobility specialists to take charge, making sense of the chaos.

The way forward

Mobility is having a profound impact on how global organisations are operating. It changes how people and businesses connect, transforms customer service, and is remodelling how businesses manage their mission critical processes.

Starting with a clear vision will not inform the strategy, but allow organisations to benefit from business critical mobility, enhancing their customer experience and place mobility at the heart of their digital transformation plans.

Nassar Hussain is the MD, EMEA, SOTI.

Praseeda Nair

Kellen Rempel

Praseeda was Editor for from 2016 to 2018.

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