When will mobility become the norm in business?

Multiple-Devices-With-Charts-And-GraphsI love the stat from Xcube Labs that found 67 percent of CIOs believe mobility will impact their businesses more than the Internet did in the 1990s. It drives home the opportunity with mobile, as we all well know the impact the Internet has had on businesses.

However, why has it taken so long for mobility to take off in business like it has in our personal lives? Enterprises are struggling to transform their business processes with mobile like they thought they would, and users just aren’t adopting as easily. A recent survey by VMware found only 17 percent of organizations have shifted at least one core business process to a mobile paradigm.

Here is my view on why adoption of mobile in the workforce has been stagnant:

  1. Mobile apps in business are too hard to deploy and configure.
  2. The experience across enterprise mobile, web, and desktop applications can be inconsistent.
  3. Businesses are implementing one use case at a time, limiting the impact mobile can have on a business process and the stickiness it can have on the business.

In order for mobile to truly transform, three critical things need to happen:

  1. Apps need to be simple to deploy and configure with a native device experience that is as delightful as consumer apps.
  2. It needs to be much easier for businesses to purchase complete mobile solutions for their industry and roles, including devices, apps, content, and identity solutions.
  3. IT departments need a simpler and more consistent way to manage all apps, devices, content, and identities.

Here’s how you make these happen:

1. Take the native approach to mobile apps and simplify how apps are deployed, configured, and secured with App Configuration for Enterprise (ACE). ACE is a community helping to grow mobile adoption in business at a much quicker pace, without sacrificing user experience or security, by leveraging functionality that is already available to app developers in iOS and Android operating systems.

The ACE community is promoting the Apple and Google development frameworks for configuring and securing apps.  ACE was launched at Mobile World Congress by AirWatch, SalesForce, WorkDay, Cisco, Xamarin, and Box. If independent software vendors (ISVs) take this native approach when building apps, all apps will be configured and secured in a more consistent and simple way with enterprise mobility management (EMM) vendors – making it much easier and faster for organizations to enable productive users.

ACE helps app developers take advantage of four great functionalities introduced by Apple and Google in their operating systems:

  1. Configuration by leveraging their standard “Managed Configurations” APIs
  2. VPN access leveraging “per-app VPN” protocol
  3. Single sign-on, including Kerberos, certificates to IDP
  4. Security and access controls, such as data protection, managed open-in, custom app configuration, and copy/paste controls

ISVs are thrilled about this approach for several reasons:

  • There is no need to integrate to proprietary EMM SDKs or containers.
  • Apps can work across all EMM solutions.
  • Customers can utilize the app on the public app store.
  • Customers can enjoy the native experience of the app with enterprise security.

If ISVs and app development shops stick with native apps and leverage existing app configuration functionality from Apple and Google, we will start to see a shift in how quickly and easily organizations adopt mobile and transformative mobile apps.

2. Look into AirWatch by VMware EMM solutions to more easily purchase complete mobile solutions for your industry and roles. AirWatch is working closely with Apple through the Apple Mobile Essentials program to help meet the mobile needs across all key industries, including health care, retail, government, education, manufacturing, transportation, and hospitality.

3. Streamline application delivery, management, and security with VMware Workspace Suite. VMware Workspace Suite, which includes VMware business mobility solutions such as Horizon, AirWatch, and Content Locker, empowers IT departments to manage all apps, devices, content, and identity in a consistent way with one solution. This approach helps IT drastically cut costs and streamline how they manage all users and their needs.

I leave you with this key thought: I believe mobile adoption in business will happen – don’t miss out on this legendary opportunity. Be the one to transform your industry with true mobile innovation.

About the author

Mimi Spier is Sr. Director, Strategy and Business Development for Business Mobility at VMWare. Follow her on Twitter at @mimi_spier.

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