The "MDM Bounceback” – Why Enterprises are Stepping Away from MDM to Manage Apps
In its day, mobile device management (MDM) was touted as the enterprise mobility management solution for the growing number of employees wielding company-issued smartphones. However, as business and technology landscapes evolve together – and the appetite for bring your own device (BYOD) continues to grow – it’s becoming increasingly difficult for MDM to keep up with the times.
Organizations Favor an App-Centered Approach
Both 451 Research and Gartner predict a strong shift towards mobile application management (MAM®) in the next two years, as MDM proves more and more cumbersome. The problem with MDM and the modern workforce is that it does not offer adequate coverage of the devices used in today’s fluid business environment. With a greater mix of full-time, part-time, contract, and temporary employees using their personal devices to access enterprise mobile apps – MAM offers a solution that is simultaneously easier to administer, less intrusive and more secure.
Complete Workforce Coverage without Employee Pushback
MDM can be a viable solution for full-time employees issued devices that are explicitly corporate owned, but when applied to personal devices, employees find it intrusive. Even the least intrusive MDM solution has an adverse affect on device performance. The legal and administrative effort required to continue MDM practices in a BYOD environment is considerable. Take into account the average number of mobile devices an average user owns and how often they upgrade them, and scalability also starts to become a real issue. This is why MAM solutions have proven to be so popular. Applying security featured at an app-level allows your workforce - full-time employees, short-term contractors, part-time employees, and even remote employees - to retain full control over their device. Their personal contacts, apps, data, photos, and other information remain separate from the fully secured B2E apps they use for work. As BYOD users upgrade their smartphones and tablets, they can begin using fully secure enterprise apps as soon as they download them. The costly security software, ownership issues, and administration headaches of MDM go out the window with an app-centric management approach.
Flexible Code-Free Security Solutions
MDM offers few practical security features that can be applied without compromising user devices. Faced with this issue, enterprises are beginning to embrace the no-fuss security solutions offered by MAM. App-level data containment policies are not only flexible, but also easy to implement. Mobile app security features such as single sign-on, copy and paste restrictions, and encryption can be added - practically code-free - as wrappers to apps that have already been developed. After the app wrapping process, an app can be deployed to BYOD users who are full-time, part-time, contract, or otherwise, and sit securely on their devices without intruding on their personal data.
The Future of Mobile Devices in the Workplace
All current studies indicate substantial growth in the proliferation of BYOD users in the workforce. A broad range of device types and forms of employment means that enterprises with existing MDM policies will need to augment and perhaps reconsider their approach, with the more streamlined and scalable solution presented by MAM as the next logical step in enterprise mobility. This originally appeared on Wired Innovation Insights on December 19, 2014.