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Using real-time data analytics to increase productivity and the cost efficiency of enterprise mobile devices

Gary Lee's picture
Chief Revenue Officer B2M Solutions

Gary Lee is the Chief Revenue Officer for B2M Solutions, a software vendor with HQ outside Oxford, UK, and North America HQ in Atlanta, GA. B2M provides a real-time view into the health and...

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  • Dec 11, 2020
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As more and more field service companies across different industries embark upon their journeys towards digital transformation, one of the key solutions powering the process has been the adoption of mobile devices. The benefits mobility offers enterprises are numerous. Mobile devices extend employee capabilities beyond the confines of the office via remote working while also providing access to key business applications needed for field workers to perform their jobs. Almost every single business today has either already integrated, or plans to integrate mobile devices into their IT systems to optimise business processes, streamline workflows and increase workforce productivity.

However, one area where many organisations are struggling is the management of these devices. According to our recent research report, despite the critical reliance companies and workers have on mobile devices and tablets, there has been a 16% rise this year in the number of problems and issues reported by employees across Europe and North America who depend on their mobile device to do their job. In the same report, 67% of these workers reported having at least one mobile issue per month that prevents them from doing their job and, crucially, only 15% of these issues were ever actually reported to IT.

Additionally, over 75% of IT workers surveyed in our report, state mobile device batteries regularly do not last as long as workers need and 62% of frontline workers report their mobile apps are crashing regularly. It is unsurprising that an increasing number of companies are finding themselves negatively affected by the ‘hidden’ issue of these end-user mobile device issues which are crippling productivity and upsetting the well-being of the workforce.

It is a huge challenge for any IT department to be proactive all the time in maintaining the Infrastructure of their organisation and portable mobile devices merely exacerbate that issue. Most IT teams spend more time reacting to problems than trying to identify them before they cause disruption. However, for companies to run at optimal performance, proactive data analysis and monitoring is essential. In an ideal world, IT departments should have detailed monitoring of all the servers, backup, firewall activity, application services, system checks, web-based reporting, and remote support that make up the enterprise device ecosystem.

So, what is the solution to this problem? As with most things involving the enterprise, the answer lies with data and leveraging new solutions that provide real-time visibility into the health and usage of mobile devices that go beyond basic mobile device management solutions such as MDM / EMM. These early solutions focused solely on devices and lacked application and content management. Today, the proliferation of connectivity options (5G, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi etc.), coupled with innovations in cloud, artificial intelligence, and AI, means that enterprise mobility intelligence can be constantly captured, processed, and analysed almost instantaneously. This helps them support policy and configuration management tools and provides IT with the right tools to maintain security.

By focusing on limiting these soft costs associated with device deployment and providing proactive monitoring to catch potential issues before they spread, IT teams are able to manage their network devices in an effective and efficient way instead of reacting to failed or malfunctioning devices that have already caused significant downtime for employees and services. This shift in how mobile devices are managed also helps to limit the costs of repairs or battery replacements, eliminate unnecessary device replacements and cut down on employee downtime, all of which will increase productivity and service quality.

For instance, if a company can proactively monitor the health of individual mobile devices used by their employees in real-time, they will be able to proactively replace or repair devices only when needed. Similarly, IT teams can now proactively monitor mobile devices undergoing software updates providing complete oversight of the health of all mobile devices during the update process to spot issues proactively and eliminate outages for employees.   And by constantly monitoring the usage of devices and apps, companies can better understand their ROI on mobile investments, and how to better deploy their mobile assets.

The proactive nature of real-time data analytics manifests itself in other ways as well. It has a positive effect on an organisation’s entire IT resources as well as the end users of those services. Keeping a regular and up to date check enables people to rectify any sort of discrepancies before they become an issue. Real-time notifications are one of the key elements of this, as they will not only alert you to a performance issue but also make it easy for you to resolve those issues. Live warning alerts can help teams to quickly react to situations using different communication channels such as email, SMS, integrated dashboards etc.

Also, the data gathered by real time analytics tools provide IT teams and the wider organisation with deep insight into each and everything that is happening inside each of their devices. This can help companies grow their bottom line significantly – i.e. increase the productivity and overall growth of business. Monitoring will prevent staff manually checking IT performance, receive mission-critical notifications in advance and reduce the overall work required to keep IT systems in an optimal shape. Without the need to manually dig into network performance, staff have time back in their day to work on more critical projects. Seeing the source of issues cuts down on tedious troubleshooting and getting ahead of IT outages reduces the costs of outages to your organisation.

Ultimately, real-time data analytics on mobile devices enhances the employee experience of using mobility by ensuring mobile devices and apps are fully operational and fit for use. Field workers are therefore able to perform their jobs without hesitation. Powered by the innovations in AI, cloud, and connectivity, the information and tools to do this are now available to all businesses.  With mobile devices playing such a crucial role in companies today, lowering the number of issues workers face to improve productivity and efficiency is a critical goal of any mobile device deployment and management strategy.

 

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Thank Gary for the Post!
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