Mobile Strategies and Emerging Technologies in the Enterprise

In 2014, 'bring your own' has continued to act as a catalyst and a common entry point for organisations' mobile strategies, but BYOD doesn't necessarily constitute Enterprise Mobility.

As mobility becomes broader and more horizontal, businesses are realising that they need to think more expansively, and that mobility needs to mean something to them from a strategic point of view.

The focus on devices is now evolving into an emphasis on the applications and content that employees need access to, with security also needing to develop, to allow this access to have a positive impact on workloads, rather than introduce greater risk.

In terms of both security and privacy, as more personal devices are used to access more and more business content, IT departments will require a clear separation of personas on these devices, as well as a separation of the ability to monitor activity on each device from an enterprise point of view.

Many organisations will look to mobilise by overlaying an existing work flow with a mobile solution, when it was perhaps not first designed to benefit from mobile, or was a poor work flow to begin with. If they re-evaluate how their workforce operates in the context of mobility, and embrace the technology strategically, then these solutions will become an inherent part of the overall business.

Legacy systems which are crucial within the organisation can create the challenge of developing an application which works well on one platform and doesn't translate to a mobile setting. Dated corporate applications designed for desktop must be carefully reinterpreted into a touch-friendly mobile setting, which will allow organisations to take full advantage of their mobile strategies. For example, the interface must be optimised for the mobile experience, not just forced to work within it to get the most out of the technology.

In terms of what's to come regarding new and innovative technologies impacting the enterprise, it is likely that wearable devices will play a significant role. Although wearable technology isn't new to the workplace in certain industries, the new wave of technology such as Google Glass still has a very long way to go in terms of the scale of adoption reaching maturity.

Because consumer features like size and form factor aren't as important in a professional environment, such as in warehouses or in the field, wearable technology will benefit from advantages such as longer battery life, presenting huge potential for increased workforce efficiency.

However, the capabilities wearables can deliver in terms of training, real-time contextual information and hands-free working are exciting for businesses in all kinds of verticals. Additionally, experts have also identified the internet of things along with beacons as another important next step which is already gaining a great deal of momentum.