BYOD 'yesterday's news'
SIDBEAR-LEFT]BYOD is no longer the main enterprise mobility challenge - now, it's all about applications, says Chris Rae, VP for mobility solutions at CA Technologies.
"Many people are still focusing on the bring your own device (BYOD) challenge," says Rae. "But the reality is that BYOD is almost yesterday's news. Our recent research shows that the focus is increasingly on the apps. It's not so much about managing the device, and more about getting the apps under control."
The research, commissioned by CA Technologies and carried out by Vanson Bourne late last year, polled over 1 300 senior IT professionals worldwide. It concluded that successful enterprise mobility deployment goes beyond supporting BYOD, and requires specific strategies targeted at balanced servicing of customer, IT and employee needs.
The study found that while the benefits of mobility are well understood, concerns over security and privacy, multiple platform support, budget constraints and lack of appropriately skilled personnel are seen as the biggest obstacles to mobility adoption. The report also revealed that external customer initiatives, like secure application management, are now outpacing internal BYOD projects on IT priority lists. It indicates customer-facing mobile initiatives are business-critical and need to be addressed with the same sense of urgency as internal efforts.
"People aren't truly embracing the enterprise workforce yet," says Rae. "They tend to think that secure VPN access to a powerful laptop, or e-mail and calendar access on a mobile phone is true mobility. But it's not.
"True mobility is about delivering secure and reliable access to back-office systems to support processes across the enterprise." Rae explains that delivering this kind of functionality may come with challenges, but is now achievable. "It's about atomisation of traditional processes," he explains. "It means redeveloping access to back-office processes so that a very simple app on a mobile device still enables you to do your job."
Led by consumer applications in which users have access to simple apps that perform a limited number of functions exceptionally well, the enterprise is moving to develop apps offering simple functionality that may enable just a few processes required by each individual to enable them to do their job, says Rae. "You don't need to replicate the entire back-office system on mobile. In most cases, the user requires access to limited functionality in the back-office system."
Rae says this change in approach will see IT departments developing more mobile apps and releasing updates more regularly. "Enterprises are taking a piecemeal approach to this at the moment," he says, "but this growing trend presents opportunities to consulting houses and systems integrators."
Rae will deliver a keynote talk on CA Technologies' Mobility Vision at the upcoming CA IT Management Africa Symposium, in Johannesburg. For more information about this event, click here.