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business
19 June 2017

Enterprise mobility and the smartphone user

Business leaders need to think further about the role of technology and mobile devices within their organisations.

Digitisation has offered businesses a number of new ways to reach their clients, whether through email, messaging or online notifications. For employees, this increased connectivity provides exciting new ways of doing business and are essential to attract and retain new talent. 

Mobile technology in the enterprise space is helping drive business transformation by improving efficiencies, increasing productivity, driving down the cost of operation and enabling real-time access to information anywhere, at any time. Despite the incredible potential of mobility in the workplace, mobile enterprise will only be successful if effectively managed by ensuring the use of mobile tools and resources properly aligns with business objectives.

Essentially, the right balance must be struck between meeting demand for mobility within the enterprise, and protecting the business' core data assets. When deploying a digital strategy, businesses need to adopt a far more proactive approach to cyber security. 

Mobile usage figures

According to the 2016 Corporate IT Security Risks survey conducted in South Africa by Kasperskty Lab in cooperation with B2B International:

  • 39.5% of companies experienced physical loss of devices or media containing data in the past 12 months.
  • 28.9% noted that inappropriate sharing of data via mobile devices.
  • 39.5% experienced physical loss of mobile devices that exposed the organisation to risk.
  • 61% of employees reported working outside the office at least part of the time.
  • 3 or more devices are used daily by an employee for work activities.
  • 72% increase in the number of devices used in an enterprise between 2015 and 2016.

Security is central 

The protection of sensitive data accessed by employees across numerous locations, devices and content types is imperative for any business. In today's increasingly connected society, businesses can no longer afford to treat security as a nice-to-have. The way forward is to ensure that security is central to delivering strategic goals of the company. 

Some businesses tackle this challenge by loading security software on every device - however, this device-centric approach to endpoint protection can be costly, administratively intensive to implement and resource-intensive to maintain. 

The inherent risks of increased enterprise mobility lie in the fact that business is losing control of and visibility of their information. With so much information stored on personal devices, the risk of leaks or accidental exposure of sensitive information is more prevalent. 

When it comes to developing the right enterprise mobility platform to match business needs, it’s critical to hear what users want, understand the risks and then decide whether certain apps and technologies are suitable. Historically, employees had to be physically present in the office, but though mobile connectivity, employees now demand more flexible working hours and ways of working. 

Moving forward

Millennials are attracted to different ways of working - no longer is the traditional nine-to-five office job the default. They prefer flexibility, trust, and the freedom to work anywhere and at any time, as long as they fulfill the task. But this flexibility should promote productivity, not hinder it. 

Millennials working in mobile enterprises need to be measured on their output rather than their specific activity at a given point in time. If the correct deliverables and timeframes are established and the right measurements are put in place, then productivity should not suffer. In fact, the changing face of work, when correctly implemented and monitored, may actually boost overall productivity. 

These new approaches to enterprise mobility do not only appeal to Millennials - they increasingly appeal to all modern employees. We all want convenience, timeliness of access to information and to be respected. The same mindset that will make your customer delighted by your service should be applied to your employees. 

Enterprise Mobility