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IoT Makes Enterprise Mobility Management (EMM) Even More Important September 21th, 2022

IoT Makes Enterprise Mobility Management (EMM) Even More Important
As IT environments grow more complex, businesses need enhanced mobile device management capabilities.  

Businesses and enterprises are accelerating their digital transformation strategies. However, whether in haste or without a complete understanding of the new IT environments they’re creating, some of those plans are missing an essential element: enterprise mobility management (EMM). While mobile solutions and Internet of Things (IoT) systems have the potential to provide companies with a range of benefits, they can be radically decreased when companies don’t manage them effectively.  

The European Mobility Management Gap report from SOTI and Ovum found that about half of European businesses lack basic mobile device management (MDM), much less EMM. The report, based on a survey of more than 2,000 businesses in Denmark, Finland, Germany, France, Italy, Norway, Spain, Sweden, and the UK, also pointed out that 59 percent of companies haven’t formalized policies for the use of smartphones and laptops in the workplace and fewer address tablets and wearables. Furthermore, 61 percent of respondents have made little to no progress with mobility.  

There is a correlation between those statistics. Mobile devices that aren’t maintained fail more often and can interfere with productivity. Moreover, issues with mobile devices can be so disruptive to workflows that employees revert to paper-based or manual processes, decreasing the ROI of mobile solution investments.  

Additionally, if companies don’t monitor how devices are used, employees may make choices that hurt mobile device performance. For example, if users download shadow IT, those apps can use so much power that devices don’t last throughout a shift without swapping batteries or docking the device to recharge. Unauthorized applications can also introduce new cybersecurity risks from vulnerabilities that the IT department isn’t aware could impact the company.

Growing Risks from IoT

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Digital transformation involves more than deploying mobile devices. Companies are also implementing Internet of Things technology to create connected systems of devices, sensors, computers, and more to enable the free flow of data. In addition to laying the groundwork for automation, connecting mobile devices to an IoT network allows users to access data in real-time. For example, a building manager could receive an alert on a mobile device that sensors indicate the presence of smoke and increased temperatures – or that data could be automatically shared with a local fire company. Likewise, a manager on a manufacturing shop floor could use a mobile device to monitor equipment performance with insights from IoT devices – and have the insights needed to schedule maintenance or to stop production if failure is imminent.  

However, more “things” connected to the Internet of Things require expanding management capabilities to EMM to cover IoT devices and mobile devices connected to the corporate network.  

The Benefits of Enterprise Mobility Management  

One of the significant advantages of EMM is cybersecurity. With leading enterprise mobility management, businesses and organizations can protect connected devices with a consistent level of security. EMM also enables IT to monitor devices connected to the network and identify unusual behavior that could indicate malware. EMM can also allow the IT team to limit access to specific endpoints, decreasing the attack surface.  

EMM also gives IT more control in BYOD environments, pushing corporate data to containers on employees’ personal devices. It also saves the IT team time, enabling them to send updates remotely to multiple users rather than requiring them to bring devices to them individually.  Also, when EMM ensures that mobile and IoT devices are updated and maintained, systems deliver top performance, minimizing interruptions and downtime.  

Innovation Continues 

The SOTI report points out that as the EMM market matures throughout Europe, users will understand it’s about more than mobile device management or even IoT device management. Instead, it’s a supporting technology for digital transformation and responding to user demands and behavior changes. It can also provide businesses and organizations visibility and actionable information on device status and health, resulting in greater productivity and competitiveness.  

The growing number of connected devices worldwide is anticipated to grow from 9.7 billion in 2020 to more than 29 billion in 2030. Businesses and enterprises need solutions to help manage their share. It’s an opportunity technology solutions providers shouldn’t ignore.  

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