Why Is Public Sector Mobility Struggling?
Allowing more government applications to be accessible from mobile devices can permit some employees to improve productivity while reducing the government’s cost to buy and provision devices to employees. However, between fiscal limitations and stringent regulations, the local and state government has been slow in advancing toward enterprise mobility. Only 37% of state CIOs surveyed in the 2013 NASCIO State CIO Survey said that their government-wide mobility management projects are “mostly coordinated.” Approximately 10% said they have a disjointed, uncoordinated approach to mobility management.
Employees are pushing the trend
The employees are demanding that the government update to the latest technologies so they can bring their own devices into the workplace. This, combined with the huge influx of mobile devices, has increased the sense of urgency. According to Kenneth Corbin, with CIO.com, “Even as the federal government warms to some of the benefits of mobile technologies in the workplace, movement has been slower at the state and local levels, where officials say security concerns and budget constraints, among other factors, keep them on the sidelines.” However, according to a survey by Mobile Work Exchange consisting of state and local IT managers, directors, CIOs, and others, even though there is a strong level of interest, 58% say they are not prepared to manage a completely mobile workforce. Unlike the federal government, local and state CIOs do not have a mandate requiring them to mobilize operations.
According to the 2010 Telework Enhancement Act, federal government has been working to develop federal mobility policies to support mobile workers and their devices. However, just like in commercial businesses, it takes time to transform business processes from pen and paper to enterprise apps. Government agencies traditionally start by using a secure browser connection to a database. At that point, they can take laptops or possibly tablets to access the remote page -- however, this is often not as effective as a mobile app. Eventually, as government IT professionals become more comfortable with enterprise mobility, mobile application management (MAM®) will allow them to have the security they need and for employees to only download qualified apps. At that point, agencies will be able to deploy their own apps with the proper levels of mobile app security. They can also certify other apps, which will be available on their enterprise app store. With mobile application management, local and state governments will be able to redefine their current business processes and translate them into mobile applications. Over time, they will be able to gather valuable business intelligence, eliminate unnecessary business functions, and thereby save money through technology.
To learn more about overcoming MDM interoperability issues and mobile security in an app-centric Federal environment, attend the webinar we are hosting with FedResults on Thursday, August 14th at 11:00 AM ET / 8:00 AM PT. Register now.