Going Mobile Beyond the Checklist

Four Mobility Missteps That Are Easily Avoided

Stephen Nardone

Here are four of the most common ways organizations fumble their mobile deployments, and what you can do to prevent them.

What About BYOD?

The first common mistake is doing nothing about BYOD. Waiting until you figure everything out sounds good on paper, but in reality it’s an invitation for chaos. You need to look at all the facts you have and then get a basic management solution that will handle your needs today. According to a Gartner study 50% of users engaged in BYOD have done so without their company noticing – or, in other words, in violation of the rules. Each of those devices is a hole in your security and brings with it all sorts of compatibility issues. You can either manage the use of mobile devices or manage the problems that come from not having managed them.

Which End Is Up?

Another common misstep is thinking BYOD can be handled in a top-down manner. BYOD isn’t your father’s IT. You need to get user input onmanagement tools and policies. It is essential to remember that people are bringing their own mobile devices. Because of this you must include representatives from any group that will be using the devices. Not doing so cuts you off from crucial input and insights. As Gartner puts it, “IT departments that make technology selections without user involvement have suffered conflicts since the arrival of the first computer.”

The Last Word
A lot of us are also guilty of having too many policies – which is often worse than no policy at all. This is what Gartner says, “As in many other markets, less is often more. If the IT department can master an effective review process for role- and task-based management requirements, then the set of necessary policies can be streamlined.” Develop and use an IT review process to save you time and money by making it possible to have one rule instead of two, three, or more.

Going IT Alone
Finally, don’t be a hero by assuming you can handle all of it yourself – ask for help. Deployment and management of mobile devices is a lot to manage alone. All the planning, transition, and ongoing supervisory issues can be a huge distraction from other essential activities. They require a lot of time and familiarity with the large number of must-do processes. This is one of the classic “Don’t reinvent the wheel” situations. There are all sorts of easier ways to do things that only an expert is going to know about.