The IT world has felt this before: the exhilarating mix of energy and apprehension as a brand-new technology arrives in the workplace and ends up transforming it. In the 19th century, that technology was the typewriter. In the 20th century, it was the mainframe, then, in quick succession, the desktop, the personal computer, the laptop and -- last but not least -- the Internet. In this century, the latest transformative technology is mobility.
Like the Internet, mobile device technology originated in the consumer marketplace, not in the corporate world. Gartner Inc., however, goes so far as to predict that by 2014 -- only three years from now -- 90% of companies will support their corporate applications on mobile devices. As one SearchCIO.com columnist has aptly put it, mobility is going to rock the business world.
If you're not yet up to speed on mobility, this guide can help. It covers mobile device management, mobile device and data security, mobile application strategies and social media on mobile devices.
This guide is part of SearchCIO.com's CIO Briefings series, which is designed to give IT leaders strategic guidance and advice that addresses the management and decision-making aspects of timely topics. For a complete list of the topics covered to date, visit the CIO Briefings section.
- Mobile device management
- Mobile device and data security
- Mobile application strategies
- Social media on mobile devices
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| Mobile device management
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If mobile device management is not at the top of your agenda, take a look at these numbers from leading research firms: IDC predicts the smartphone market will grow by nearly 50% this year, and the number of these phones in use will surpass 450 million. In addition, Deloitte LLP forecasts companies will buy more than 10 million iPads this year.
Gartner Inc. predicts that 90% of companies will support corporate applications on personal mobile devices by 2014. By that date, 80% of companies will have a mobile workforce armed with tablets, with the iPad expected to dominate the market through 2015, according to the Stamford, Conn.-based consultancy.
CIOs simply can't afford to repeat the mistake they made with the iPhone -- namely, dismissing these new tablets as toys for the elite, experts warn. These little business and personal computers are here to stay.
Learn more in "CIOs scrambling to adapt mobile device management to a BYOD era." Also:
- Seven categories for evaluating mobile device management products
Do you need a mobile device management product to control an employee-driven revolt against corporate-issued devices? Consider these MDM selection tips.
- The mobility megatrend: Embrace the change or get left behind
Mobility and everything the technology is influencing could bring about more change than the Internet revolution did. How can we succeed? Embrace change and lead.
- Device choices make mobile workforce management decisions primary
The decision to deploy devices to support a mobile workforce is an easy one, but choosing which devices and platforms to deploy is not as easy.
- Crafting a mobile device policy strategy
Learn how to develop and manage a mobile device policy, including mobile device security measures that can help you along the way, in this guide.
| Mobile device and data security
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As mobile devices proliferate, CIOs are re-examining a few thorny issues surrounding mobile data security: relaxing BlackBerry-only policies, budgeting for unknown smartphone costs and backing up a variety of endpoint devices.
It's increasingly clear that large organizations are approaching a tipping point in adopting mobile devices, according to The Enterprise Strategy Group Inc. (ESG), a research firm in Milford, Mass. Of the total number of endpoint devices in all organizations, there still are twice as many desktop PCs as laptop PCs. That ratio shifts, however, as the number of an organization's employees increases, according to ESG research: In large enterprises, nearly half (48%) of endpoint devices are something other than a desktop PC.
This new mobile paradigm -- propelled by advances in miniaturization, communications and applications -- requires new mobile data security strategies, experts say. One surprising development is the trend toward less stringent policies regarding the use of personal devices to connect with corporate data.
Learn more in "Mobile data security spans policies, budgets and backups." Also:
- The next frontier in IT disaster recovery plans: Mobile devices
Lulled by mobile devices synced back to centralized servers, CIOs haven't given much thought to IT disaster recovery plans for mobile computing. That needs to change.
- Mobile phone security policies give IT some control over the influx
There's no turning back mobile devices' invasion of the enterprise. CIOs need to put mobile phone security policies in place to control these uninvited guests.
- FAQ: What impact do mobile computing devices have on IT compliance?
More mobile computing devices mean more security threats. Here are things to consider in adjusting your IT compliance strategy to meet challenges brought by iPhones and the like.
| Mobile application strategies
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With the use of mobile devices to access business applications exploding, companies are under pressure to craft a mobile application strategy for their workforce and for customers. The key tasks for CIOs, experts say, are first, to understand what their organization is trying to achieve with mobility -- and second, to decide what IT has to do with any of that. (Hint: You might be out in the cold already.)
Executing on an organization's goals for either its workforce or its customers won't necessarily be easy, according to SearchCIO.com interviews with experts and digital media experts across a spectrum of industries. First, there are the technical challenges related to adapting applications to the plethora (8,000, by some estimates) of mobile computing devices in use. Second, there are the fundamental business questions raised by any application deployment. Organizations need to know who is accessing which business applications and for what purpose, experts stressed -- before they start optimizing content and delivery for computing devices.
"It is important to identify what your mobile population is accessing, and what device they are using," said Apoorv Durga, an analyst at Olney, Md.-based Real Story Group. An organization's text, video and audio content, as well as its layout's look and feel, all have to be adapted to mobile devices' various screen sizes and capabilities, he said.
Learn more in "CIOs need a mobile application strategy, but crafting one isn't easy." Also:
- Mobile application development tops CIO strategies
Cloud computing was unavoidable -- of course -- but CIOs at this year's Society for Information Management conference were keener on mobile application development strategies.
- Outsourcing trends: Mobile business applications for a business edge
Want to know what your competitors are asking their offshore providers for? Mobile business applications, managed, supported and deployed fast for competitive gain.
- Wireless technology improvements set the stage for killer mobile apps
With the world awash in fast, ubiquitous wireless technology, our expert believes now is the time for CIOs to think about developing killer mobile apps to gain a competitive edge.
| Social media on mobile devices
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The Vanguard Group Inc., the mutual fund giant with some $1.4 trillion in assets under management, considers itself a conservative company. "We have not adopted business-casual at work yet," said Abha Kumar, principal for IT at the Valley Forge, Pa.-based investment management company. "We are very, very risk averse."
And yet, the company has embraced corporate social media and Web 2.0 tools as an integral part of its business model. Vanguard was early among mutual fund firms, according to industry trackers, to launch a public blog. The company has staked a claim on the major social networking platforms, with a Facebook page, a LinkedIn presence, a Twitter account and the Vanguard Channel on YouTube.
Vanguard has more than 3,800 wiki pages, and collaboration sites are proliferating. IT staff, for example, can work on projects internally and from outside the company's four walls via collaboration sites on the "IT Hub." Vanguard employees interested in learning more about exchange-traded funds, or ETFs, a relatively new area for the company, can tap into a collaboration site to consult with experts and get information.
So, why is a non-casual-Friday investment management firm in a heavily regulated industry a leader in corporate social media communication and collaboration tools?
Learn more in "Why a conservative mutual fund company loves corporate social media." Also:
- Social media and networking ushering in a 'third wave' of capitalism
Pepsi gets it, so does Coke. But social media and networking are not just about selling soda. They represent a "third wave of capitalism," one guru says. Ignore it at your peril.
- In building a mobility strategy, what the employee says goes
In companies building a mobility strategy, the question has shifted from what's best for the business to how to do what's needed on the mobile devices employees are demanding.
- Social media tips: Arm yourself for the social revolution
CIOs are still nervous about social networking but can't ignore the revolution any longer. Our tutorial is packed with social media tips to help ease anxiety and get big results.
| More resources
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