Freedom to work anywhere, anytime is one of the greatest benefits of Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) for busy sales people. Responding to work emails on the train, bringing up sales records at an impromptu meeting or submitting expense claims while waiting for a flight – all while using a personal device – are great examples of how sales employees are provided with the autonomy to manage their working life and drive productivity in the most effective way.
Robust security is vital for any mobile working strategy. Mobile Device Management (MDM) solutions provide employees with the access to work applications and allows the organisation to securely manage the data held on the device, but MDM is not always a suitable, cost-effective option.
Purchasing work phones with security software and access to enterprise work applications provides workers with a great deal of functionality, but this level of access is often unnecessary for those working away from the office.
Mobile working that makes sense
In an attempt to capitalise on the much mooted flexibility and productivity gains that mobile device working practices can offer, while ensuring security is maintained, organisations often settle for a flawed compromise. For these businesses it would be sensible to review their reasons for implementing a mobile device policy and look at what an effective BYOD solution should be.
Accessing work on a mobile device shouldn’t itself be a task. When working on the go, the level of functionality found in enterprise applications is nearly always unnecessary and only convolutes what should be a straightforward process.
When it comes to app mobilisation, enterprises need to take their cue from consumer IT and be intuitive, uncomplicated and clear. Attempting to fit in the full functionality of a desktop application is not an achievement, it’s a misstep.
Security of corporate data is the perennial concern of IT teams when it comes to BYOD, and losing a device has caused many an employee, and employer, to break into a cold sweat.
Security is of the utmost importance, but it need not be synonymous with restriction and regulation. As soon as security concerns start to impact on the benefits of implementing a mobile device policy, it’s time to look again at the feasibility of mobile working in your organisation.
In order for mobile working to reach its potential it must empower, not encumber. Employees should be able to use a device they are comfortable and familiar with – their own. As the most versatile and advanced technology we own is carried around in our pocket, it’s a missed opportunity to not take advantage of its flexibility and bypass the need for a separate work device.
The expense of corporate mobile device ownership can be substantially more than anticipated. Extra IT resource, security and unforeseen additional services add up and can spiral far beyond anticipated expenditure.
Organisations need to realistically review the cost of investment, taking into account carrier charges, IT resource and security, before furnishing sales staff with corporate mobile devices.
Reviewing the problem
Finding the balance between productivity and security is a challenge many organisations fail to find, leaving employees dragging around a frustratingly cumbersome second phone.
However, the introduction of micro apps is helping people claw back the autonomy that mobile working can offer when implemented well. Rather than full-feature adaptions of systems such as Oracle and Salesforce, micro apps are built to complete specific, individual task-based workflows.
By using micro apps, tasks such as filing expenses, filling in timesheets and accessing sales records can be completed far more quickly and easily when compared to traditional enterprise IT solutions. Micro apps can also be used on any device so employees are free to work as and when it suits them and need not be confined to their office desk, which is vital for sales people who are often out on the road.
Simplify the solution
Micro apps give employees the freedom to work in the way that makes sense to them, on the device that makes sense to them, and data is never stored on the device or in the cloud so there is no need for the kind of IT oversight which stifles the flexibility mobile working is supposed to offer.
As beneficial as it can be for a business, it’s important that organisations do not lose sight of employee requirements when implementing systems for mobile working. When it comes to your sales employees, allowing them to use their own mobile device gives power to your people enabling them to maximise their productivity and boost sales figures.