Organizations struggling with oversight over employees’ mobile devices: Report

A report released today by enterprise software provider SOTI found that 52 per cent of organizations do not have the budget to ensure real-time visibility over their employees’ mobile devices, including phones, tablets, printers and other mobile solutions. 

The report, which seeks to examine the state of the mobility industry amid accelerated digital transformation and increasingly dispersed workforces, surveyed 3,650 full-time or part-time IT workers across the U.S, Mexico, Germany, France, Sweden and more, including 350 in Canada.

Interestingly, over 90 per cent of the surveyed respondents have a mobility management solution to ensure that workers’ devices are optimally equipped, monitored and protected. Yet over 70 per cent of respondents claim they are struggling to receive data diagnostics from their devices, and admit that their organizations need better operational intelligence and better tools  to measure business mobility performance.

The issue, some respondents argue, lies in the fact that over 50 per cent of organizations have not budgeted enough to ensure real-time visibility of mobile devices. Other organizations claim they have the budget, but just do not know where to start.

But the most alarming statistic is that half of all respondents believe their management teams cannot see the value in investing in real-time visibility of mobile devices.

“Organizations that embrace mobile technology to optimize dispersed workforces face new mobility challenges,” noted Shash Anand, senior vice president, product strategy, SOTI. “They risk issues arising from lack of visibility into mobile device performance, battery health, location, security and more that will ensure organizational productivity. There is a need for a new set of tools and advanced mobility solutions to understand what is happening in the field.” 

Security remains a top concern, the report reveals. Over 40 per cent are worried about the risk of data leaks, accidental data loss, vulnerability to malware, and lost/stolen devices, as well as employees using weak passwords. Unsecured communication over public networks is also a key worry.

Security risks are especially accrued when mobile devices are shared between multiple employees without any assignment (e.g., picking up and using the device without having to register).

Printers also present a prime example of how organizations are unable to achieve real-time centralized management. Many do not know how many printers they have, or where they are deployed.

Additionally, the report finds that 50 per cent are concerned that printers with outdated firmware could be vulnerable to hacking; 51 per cent lack the tools to remotely support printers; 40 per cent do not know the status of their printers in terms of settings and configurations and more than one-third cannot see how much a printer is being used.

With these key gaps plaguing organizations, respondents qualify data analytics (48 per cent) and remote troubleshooting (46 per cent) as the most important indicators affecting business mobility performance that they would like to monitor.

The report also urges against the usage of manual processes, which it says, cause delays, and result in inconsistencies due to human error.

“Given that 21 per cent of businesses globally are still using manual paper forms, it is essential for organizations to first assess current digital transformation progress before considering automation,” the report stated. “This ensures that business operations and process enhancements are aligned with their existing digital capabilities.”

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Ashee Pamma
Ashee Pamma
Ashee is a writer for ITWC. She completed her degree in Communication and Media Studies at Carleton University in Ottawa. She hopes to become a columnist after further studies in Journalism. You can email her at [email protected]

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