Tuesday, June 2, 2015

How Enterprises Can Succeed in the Next Wave of BYOD

The consumerization of end-user devices in business is a trend that will be staying put; resulting in staff having the freedom to choose and use any device, while simultaneously causing sleepless nights and security concerns for CIOs.

We are encountering an innovation explosion. The technology of James Bond and sci-fi movies is our reality. The next wave of bring your own device (BYOD): The Age of Smart Wearable Devices is already underway and growing stronger by the day.

While providing a great many opportunities, the consumerization of IT and the Internet of Things (IoT) are proving businesses with just as many challenges.

5 Top Enterprise Challenges Aside from Security

1) Sustainability, for long-term enterprise mobility success, best practices need to put be in place from the start. Policies are needed to help ensure that costs are kept to a minimum.

2) Trust, unfortunately, many cynical employees view mobile device management systems as just another way for management to look over their shoulders, rather than its crucial role for managing enterprise data security. Therefore, it is important for organizations to educate employees and build a layer of trust.

BYOD must be seen as a strategic pillar that holds up enterprise mobility strategy. If BYOD and MDM policies are not implemented and managed correctly, the organization’s mobile apps are likely to fail and be added to their pile of “waste of money projects.”

3) Device choice, the choice of operating system (OS) and device is a very personal choice and statement to the world. However, enabling unrestricted BYOD options has major implications with regards to compatibility and costs.

4) User experience is one of the biggest bottlenecks. The user experience must take into account the context of the mobile user and present just the functionality and information that is required while enabling needed transactions.

5) Apps, what personal apps are allowed? What enterprise apps should be created?

Sustainability and trust, BYOD must be seen as a strategic pillar that holds up enterprise mobility strategy. If BYOD and MDM policies are not implemented and managed correctly, the organization’s mobile apps are likely to fail and be added to their pile of “waste of money projects”.

In order to cater for all employees, enterprises need to develop their apps for multiple operating systems and devices. Native coding from the ground up for each app for each device, not to mention maintenance, can quickly become cost-prohibitive.

The moment the app user experience does not meet expectations, dissatisfaction sets in. 60% of the workforce who use enterprise apps admit dissatisfaction with them, and a staggering 63% have taken matters into their own hands and downloaded off-the-shelf apps. This bring your own app (BYOA) trend poses many challenges to security policies and enterprise data protection.

Tips for Success

App development needs to move towards a multi-channel development approach and provide optimal access to the organization’s backend systems for efficient mobilization of business processes.

It is critical to build a path and take it step by step. A clear enterprise mobility strategy is imperative. Start with the business process, and take it from there. Having a clear understanding of the business process and its touchpoints goes a long way in innovating. Start with small apps and get user input along the way. Don’t wait until the end to test the user experience.

Don’t get tied up in the technology, innovation will always happen, so instead of looking to implement the latest hot technology, look for a platform or end-to-end solution provider that can cater to the holistic mobilization of business processes.


Mobility is so important to the organization that it needs the attention of C-level or upper management. Even if they don’t make the day-to-day decisions, they need to be kept tightly in the loop for strategic decisions. However, mobilizing the business process is generally a business requirement that IT must deliver on. As a result, IT and the line of business manager need to see eye to eye and cater to all needs (business and technical).

In the past, BYOD has primarily cantered around smartphones, but the types of mobile devices are expanding at an unprecedented pace. According to Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (KPCB), while global smartphone numbers are increasing, the tablet market is exploding – already surpassing the PC notebook market. IT will need the flexibility to reimagine and redeploy apps for the devices being used in the future; selecting the right tools and partners today will make adapting to tomorrow less risky, costly and time-consuming.

Daniel Hall is Country Manager of Magic Software South Africa.

A modified version of this article was published by EE Publishers.