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A Mobility Plan for Midmarket Success

29 Jan 2016 by Sally Clasen

This article was revised September 30, 2016, to bring our readers the most up-to-date technology information.

Remember the “old” days, when only the CEO and a handful of senior staffers were issued a company-owned mobile phone or laptop? It was a management perk that existed with little oversight, but it was considered a smart way to conduct business.

It’s a new digital world, and nearly everyone employed today uses a smartphone, laptop, tablet or some other type of mobility solution to carry out day-today work functions. The trend is influenced by the Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) and Bring Your Own Application (BYOA) culture, in which workers use their personal devices rather than company owned assets to get the job done.

Your business is ringing.

Midmarket businesses, in particular, have embraced business mobility. Nearly half (43%) of midmarket business owners use a smartphone as the primary device to run their operations, according to survey results published in Intuit’s e-book, “The Appification of Small Business: Why the Small Business Market is the Next Big Thing for Developers.”

The integration of mobile business solutions enables basic functions, like collaboration among co-workers who aren’t in same physical space and the use of productivity tools including texts, email, calendars and contacts to interact. It also provides robust opportunities to engage with colleagues and customers in real time via web-conferencing and video chat across geographically dispersed locations.

Perhaps one of the more compelling advantages of BYOD is it allows midmarket businesses to save money while reaping the benefits of having employees use their own devices.

Build a mobile infrastructure.

The norm of mobility in the labor force creates unique companywide implications for the business with employee not bound to an office cube and desktop computer. It also presents challenges for IT professionals, who need to corral a device-centric landscape, and at the same time, create strategies that result in a seamless mobile experience.

That sentiment was echoed in Gartner’s “Predicts 2016: Mobile and Wireless” report released on October 13, 2015, which states: “As mobility moves into its maturity phase, its impact becomes less self-contained under the banner of mobility, and instead spreads across the computing infrastructure. Security, manageability and productivity are the key themes, where both IT leader excellence and vendor differentiation can be obtained.”

Securing the device-users

To avoid the common pitfalls inherent in a digital workforce, midmarket businesses need to develop an enterprise mobility solution that successfully connects the operational dots for business success.

For starters, when you have a staff using diverse personal devices and sharing proprietary and sensitive company information across multiple platforms, it creates a perfect cyber storm for security breaches. Yet, three quarters of midmarket businesses don't have an appropriate breach response plan currently in place, according to a 2015 survey conducted by Software Advice.