Oxford Economics, a firm that specializes in global forecasting and quantitative analysis, recently conducted a study focusing on enterprise mobility, and the differences between organizations who have adopted a Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) strategy and ones who are corporate-liable, meaning they provide mobile devices to their workforce.
Their research, based on survey of 500 senior IT executives and in-depth interviews, also quantifies the total investment in mobilty for the enterprise, focusing on areas for cost-efficiency and the strategies that deliver the greatest ROI.
Here are some key takeaways from that report:
- Mobility’s importance is only growing - Almost 80 percent of the survey’s respondents say their employees can’t do their jobs effectively without a smartphone, and more than 75% say mobile devices (phones, tablets, laptops) are essential to their business workflows. 66% of these executives say that they expect employees to be available after hours and remotely, even if employees don’t have company-provided phones.
- There is no clear leader between BYOD and Corporate-Liable Environments - 17% of the businesses surveyed provide mobile devices to all employees, while 31 percent provide to none and instead rely entirely on BYOD. The remaining 52 percent have hybrid approaches, in which certain employee groups receive corporate-issued phones based on job function or seniority. The study also reveals a wide spectrum of BYOD and corporate-liable policies, with some businesses paying for devices and service plans outright, some reimbursing employees for a part of the cost, and others letting employees pay the whole bill.
- Many have encountered unexpected Costs with BYOD - Companies that have opted for a BYOD approach have done so because of the perceived cost savings. These savings can be significant when employees pay for their own mobile service plans, but the survey revealed that increasingly enterprises are providing employees a hefty stipend to compensate for personal mobile usage. In many cases, this stipend wipes out the savings achieved. Additionally, the mobile management costs – a combination of overheads for IT administrators, outsourcing costs and licensing of EMM software – incurred when managing BYOD workforces are only marginally lower than for a fleet of corporate-issued devices, according to the Oxford analysis in this report.
- Outsourcing Mobility Management functions is gaining traction - Enterprises are struggling with the complexities of mobile device management, and 65% of those surveyed have outsourced some or all of the day-to-day deployment and management of devices. This type of outsourcing is particularly popular among SMB’s, while larger enterprises are more likely to, for now, have the internal resources and expertise to handle these tasks in-house.
- Every business should have set Mobility policies in place - Mobility is no longer an ancillary service. As mobility’s role in business increases, so must the policies and strategies it. Tight controls must be put in place to monitor both device procurement and device usage. Companies that established set usage and cost guidelines for their employees, and continually benchmarked them against these guidelines, saw both financial and operational benefits.
An effective corporate mobility plan can be a meaningful differentiator and competitive advantage for enterprises today. Today’s businesses must closely monitor, and continually reevaluate, their mobility programs to make certain that their costs are always aligned with their usage, and their device lifecycle management activities always mitigate security risks and enable transformational digital workflows.