IQPC’s 2016 Enterprise Mobility Exchange: The Enterprise Mobility Market Comes of Age

Contributor: David Krebs
Posted: 07/13/2016
2016 EME US Atlanta Speaker crop

The message from the first two days at IQPC’s 2016 Enterprise Mobility Exchange in Atlanta is clear: Enterprise mobility has matured. Yes, the topics or themes addressed by the speakers and in side-bar discussions are similar in that effective user experience, unobtrusive security and contextual awareness represented key anchors. However, and unlike themes that have monopolized conferences from years prior, what we were not inundated with was BYOD and MDM/EMM concentrated presentations. Rather, the message from the speakers overwhelmingly addressed the APPLICATION of mobile solutions. What problems are they solving? What workflows are they streamlining? Evidencing real world examples, discussing best practices from lessons learned and articulating how businesses are harnessing the benefits of modern mobile solutions while addressing the real challenges they present were key themes across much of the content.

The lineup of speakers over the first two days spanned technology practitioners and thought leaders. From insights on big data and mobility opportunities in the technology-averse oil and gas sector by the Chief Data Scientist of Halliburton, to Delta Air Line’s Enterprise Mobility General Manager discussing his organization’s mobile journey, the speakers offered practical advice and real world evidence about how mobile is transforming - or will transform - their business. In addition, the conference content addressed how emerging technologies in this rapidly evolving field are being considered for real world applications. Jeff Wallace – a IPQC Enterprise Mobility Exchange veteran – brought together a compelling lineup of startups to discuss how their organizations were addressing key enterprise mobility pain points – from frictionless authentication to recipient engagement and productivity tools to artificial intelligence and application scalability and resiliency tools. 

Another key theme and take-away from the conference was the collaboration required between IT and OT (operations technology) decision makers. The adoption of a cross-functional approach to technology investment decisions and development of mobile centers of excellence all point to the necessary maturation in how leading organizations tackling these challenges. What market leaders are realizing are the benefits of tighter collaboration between IT and OT decision makers yield much greater solution ROI. Both entities (IT and OT) have the best interest of the company at mind, but often have different views on how technology fits into corporate strategy. The operations-side of the business sees mobility as a tool for achieving business goals and improving efficiency, while IT notes the threats that such investments entail and does their best to mitigate them, focusing on security, governance and integration. However, with the emergence of more comprehensive mobility strategies and the impact of initiatives such as IoT, the lines between IT and OT are increasingly blurry. 

Key IT-centric Issues and Requirements:

  • Skills Gap. Limited or uneven IT support for more modern mobile solutions has been a common issue revealed in our surveys. Ensuring that IT is appropriately staffed to provide adequate development and support requirements is a growing requirement.
  • Infrastructure & Systems Modernization. In light of pervasive – and often custom – legacy infrastructure and operating systems, the need for greater flexibility and systems that can support today’s security packages represents a key pain point for IT. Overcoming these barriers is a critical requirement for organizations looking to fully leverage enterprise mobility opportunities. 
  • Mobile Security. Infrastructure modernization needs to be conducted with an eye on addressing potential for network vulnerabilities, data leakage and secure access to mobile applications. These represented the top three IT concerns for mobile application deployments. 
  • Closer collaboration with OT. In many ways IT has been forced to alter their approach and proactively change the perception that they are no longer a bottleneck to more innovative – and open – application of technology. IT teams often lack the experience with line of business solutions and have been slower to embrace new technology paradigms. 

Key OT-centric Issues and Requirements:

  • Improving Productivity and Speed of Decision Making. The benefits of enterprise mobility solutions are far reaching and include a vastly more productive, connected and collaborative workforce. As our research suggests these are top of mind investment requirements for OT decision makers. 
  • Addressing Exposure to Data Leaks. Although security is traditionally viewed as the domain of IT decision makers, it is critical that OT similarly embrace these requirements as more systems and end points are connected. Ensuring security and encryption of data in transmit and at rest needs to become consistent with the OT blueprint. 
  • Closer collaboration with IT. Finding consensus with IT especially around security and development of the most appropriate infrastructure to support OT initiatives will be paramount. Shadow IT might represent an “easy alternative”; however, cannot represent a long term strategy. 

The first two days of the event have not disappointed. Looking forward to the final day tomorrow. Stay tuned for the wrap up!

Find out more about the 2016 Enterprise Mobile Exchange Atlanta at

Thank you, for your interest in IQPC’s 2016 Enterprise Mobility Exchange: The Enterprise Mobility Market Comes of Age .
David Krebs
Contributor: David Krebs

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