Cut costs through mobile management

By effectively managing communications, the average large enterprise could potentially cut costs by 25%, says MTN Business.

Read time 2min 40sec

There is no turning back from the mobile enterprise era, but the challenges and costs can be kept in check with proper management.

So says Andre van Zyl, senior manager: enterprise product and services, at MTN Business, who says mobility is catalysing change and economic growth across Africa. "All across the continent, we see evidence that businesses have thrived, boosting economic growth, with the maturity of mobile," he says.

"Mobility delivers efficiencies and a competitive edge to companies. In a competitive landscape, you can't afford not to be mobile. When you're talking the mobile enterprise, it's not just about the benefits to operations and employees - it is also about opening communication channels with partners and customers, adding convenience and driving customer loyalty."

But there are concerns - many of them from the IT department, Van Zyl notes. "To enable the mobile enterprise and make the most of the potential of mobility, enterprises have to move beyond the borders created by the IT manager."

Van Zyl conceded that enabling true enterprise mobility means navigating a complex landscape of devices, operating systems and applications, as well as ensuring the environment is managed and secure. This simply necessitates effective mobile management tools and strategies, he says.

"Doing more with less is still top-of-mind for many CIOs, and the mobile enterprise does tend to rely more on mobile communications tools than on landlines," he says. "We have even found that people tend to use a mobile to call their colleagues who are in the same building as them. This is purely because it is more convenient and they are guaranteed a fast response."

Cutting the costs of mobile voice calls can be achieved by taking advantage of bundled communications packages, unified communications tools, push-to-talk or closed user groups, he says.

And by ensuring enterprise applications are tailored for the mobile user, enterprises can ensure that bandwidth costs are kept to a minimum and still ensure the mobile worker is able to access full-function enterprise applications when out of the office.

By effectively managing communications, the average large enterprise adopting a fully integrated ICT/mobile strategy, spending around R2.5 million per month, could potentially cut its combined voice and data costs by as much as 25%, he says.

Setting up the infrastructure needed to support a fully mobile-enabled enterprise would involve an initial cost, but Van Zyl believes the efficiencies, organisational benefits and overall operational cost savings in the long term would offset initial investments.

"If you look at the overall cost of doing business - the brick-and-mortar costs, travel costs and the cost of lost productivity - you can't ignore the benefits of mobile," he says.

Van Zyl will speak at the upcoming ITWeb Mobility Summit. For more information about this event, click here.

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