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Take advantage of mobile disruption



While many companies are concentrating on formulating BYOD and COPE (corporate owned, personally enabled) policies, a number of them are capitalised on the disruption to transform their businesses with new revenue models and new ways of communicating with customers, writes ANTHONY DOHERTY.

After setting the sales charts within the consumer market on fire, mobile technology quickly began to induce migraines for IT managers around the country. This, as these managers had to deal with a flood of personnel-owned smartphones, convertibles and tablets into the workplace, as a result of employees who started using their personal devices to access corporate data from anywhere, and any time.

Whilst most companies concentrated on formulating and implementing BYOD (bring your own device) and COPE (corporate owned, personally enabled) policies, a number of innovative companies capitalised upon the disruption caused by the mobility trend to transform their businesses with new revenue models, new ways of communicating with customers, as well as new ways of inspiring their employees.

For a business to be in a position to achieve this, it first needs to secure the devices along with the corporate data that is saved on these. This task is made easier with the use of the right mobile device management solution, which amongst others allows companies to securely integrate mobile devices into their organisation’s infrastructure, keep devices up-to-date when it comes to security patches and fixes, enables mobile device encryption to protect sensitive information, and makes remote device management possible, including the ability to remotely wipe data from a lost or stolen device.

Empowering employees

Once this security groundwork is in place, employees can begin to capitalise on the benefits unlocked by enterprise mobility such as providing staff with the ability to complete vital business transactions anytime, anywhere, and from virtually any device.

A case in point is BT, which is one of the biggest communications services companies globally. The company’s field engineers struggled to perform their daily tasks such as troubleshooting and repairs, because they were having trouble matching an older operating system with the advances in technology.

This need for a modern, fit-for-purpose device and modern software was met by the field engineers receiving Windows 8 convertible devices. By using these devices, the BT field engineers managed to boost their productivity by completing more jobs per day at a higher and better standard. In addition, the touch-first modern apps used by the firm were a hit with customers, increasing client satisfaction.

Enabling better customer experiences via enterprise mobility

Mobile devices, especially tablets have the potential to change the way in which companies work. By using these devices, organisations are able to re-engineer business processes. For instance, employees within retail stores can utilise tablets with customers on a store floor, whilst sales personnel can do product pitches or present PowerPoint presentations to prospective clients on-site by using their tablet or convertible notebook.

Dimension Data employed mobile technology to showcase the ability of technology to bring value to the lives of its customers beyond the usual scope – namely the business arena. The company decided to provide an unforgettable experience for the spectators and fans at the 2013 edition of its iconic Dimension Data Pro-Am golf tournament.

The Dimension Data Group companies 3fifteen, Britehouse and Internet Solutions collaborated with Microsoft South Africa to develop a Windows 8 as well as a Windows Phone 8 application. These applications offered spectators the ability to track their favourite players in real-time on the course and keep tabs on the scores during the tournament, resulting in a novel way for fans to experience the Pro-Am.

As customer stories like this attest, the greatest benefit of enterprise mobility lies in its ability to support corporate and personal business strategies, in which increased responsiveness, productivity or customer service is required.

* Anthony Doherty, Windows Business group lead at Microsoft South Africa.

* Follow Gadget on Twitter on @GadgetZA

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