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How to prepare for cloud-based enterprise mobility management

By Donna Henderson, Vice President of Product Marketing, BlackBerry, special to Network World
November 26, 2013 03:04 PM ET

Network World - What’s the fastest, easiest, low-cost way for your organization to achieve multi-platform enterprise mobility management (EMM) without sacrificing security or performance?  Using the cloud, of course.  Here are tips to help you on that journey:

* Taxiing — Preparing for Launch.  Before you takeoff for the cloud you’ll need to prepare for the journey ahead. Consider the level of mobile device management (MDM), application management (MAM) and security your organization will need.

Offices that embrace bring-your-own-device policies (BYOD) for smartphones and tablets especially benefit from cloud-based, multi-platform enterprise mobility management solutions. A multi-platform EMM strategy can make the transition to the cloud seamless with a simple Web-based administrator console to easily control all devices and users in real time.

This console can enable you to activate and deploy devices, security settings, IT configurations and deploy mobile apps to users while increasing transparency of device use across the organization. Not only does this save time and money, it ensures continuity and better access to information for users across the organization.
Remember that leaving the land of on-premise solutions and physical servers doesn’t have to be a departure from optimal security. Seek out a solution with customizable controls and behind-the-firewall integration that ensures your mobility ecosystem meets or exceeds industry regulations.  

Cloud solutions can also allow you to perform faster and easier mobile application management, view app distribution and monitor usage for all devices and users across the enterprise, no matter the operating system they’re running or whether the device is corporate-owned or BYOD.

* Takeoff — Getting Your Solution off the Ground.  Whether you have a full-fledged IT department, a dedicated mobility management department or an employee in accounting who tinkers with IT, a cloud-based solution can be implemented and operated without IT expertise.

For those weary of migrating their information to the cloud without dedicated IT resources on staff, look for a provider who offers ongoing tech support to answer your questions and troubleshoot any issues that arise.
Once your cloud service is at cruising altitude, assign an administrator or administrators to oversee the management of the system. For a Web-based management console, they’ll simply need to register online to gain admin privileges and controls. The advantage of a Web-based system is that it allows administrators to log in from any device with a browser and from anywhere they have an Internet connection — keeping business operations flowing seamlessly. Once logged in, admins should be able to manage mobility across their whole organization, such as defining users, enrolling approved devices, setting appropriate security controls and deploying the apps employees need to do their job.

Using a cloud service eliminates the need to purchase any servers or software upfront — delivering savings that help your bottom line. Before committing to a service, be sure to consider how robust a service your business demands and a provider’s ability to scale service as your business expands.

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