Three Things You Need to Know about Mobility

06.27.2014

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Are you providing your employees with “the last mile” to complete mobile productivity?

Last week, I had the pleasure of co-presenting an InformationWeek webinar with my colleague, Allen McCurdy, where we addressed that very question and explored the challenges and solutions for enabling productivity on mobile.

Now more than ever before, employees have at their disposal a wide range of devices, apps and services that allow them to work anytime, anywhere. But even with this unprecedented mobility, a good data plan and the latest smartphone are not enough to make your employees productive.

For the mobile worker, the last mile to true mobile productivity needs to include:

  • Secure access to enterprise applications.
  • Secure file sync-and-share capabilities.
  • The ability to print. I realize we’re talking about mobile, but according to many sources this capability is the most commonly requested PC-like feature for mobile users, and many IT departments have underestimated the demand for it.

With this in mind, during the webinar I presented three points for participants to consider when developing mobile policies and strategies for their workforce:

  1. End users hold the trump card. If IT doesn’t provide the right productivity tools, users will resort to resources outside of the enterprise to find the applications and tools they need to get their jobs done. A great example of this duct-tape approach is the proliferation of Dropbox in the enterprise for file sync-and-share. There’s no doubt that Dropbox is easy to use, but this convenience can also leave your enterprise vulnerable.
  2.  “Dropbox-like” alone isn’t good enough. In addition to being easy, what also makes Dropbox appealing for mobile workers is the ubiquitous access it provides to files across devices and users, both within and outside of the company. However, in the business setting file sync-and-share solutions need to offer more in the way of managing risks. This includes control and management of sensitive files, and ensuring network-based files stay on file servers and don’t get copied to the cloud.
  3. Mobile printing doesn’t have to mean buying a bunch of new printers. Can you imagine being able to print from your tablet or smartphone to that old workhorse HP LaserJet 4000 that you’ve had in the office for the last 15 years? Solutions like Novell iPrint allow IT to enable mobile printing with existing printers and infrastructure. For IT, this means no print jobs in the cloud and the ability to manage mobile and desktop printing in one place.

With the right technology partner, it is possible to maximize mobile productivity and minimize risks, all while working within your existing infrastructure.

For more detailed commentary on the topics in this blog post, please check out the archived webinar:  http://bit.ly/1novwAr.

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