One of the greatest struggles facing IT Managers in all industries is how to manage and control mobile devices within their organization. Managers want to control how employees use and manage their mobile devices, but for most, it’s easier said than done.
Mobility in Professional Services
Like many other industries, the professional service space is moving into the cloud more and more each day. Client and employee behaviors, expectations, and attitudes are evolving just as quickly. With ready access to cloud-based software and communication programs, firms are struggling to understand and manage how their employees and clients interact with them.
One of the great benefits the cloud has enabled is on-demand access to an application from any web-enabled device. In days past those devices were limited to desktop PC’s and portable laptops, many of which were company provided. Managers could easily audit an employee’s laptop and, more importantly, retain it should that employee decide to leave or be terminated. Today’s professional service space is much more complicated. Why? Smartphones. More specifically, employee-owned smartphones.
We recently published a guide on Unified Communications and Mobility. In it, we shared that:
According to a 2016 study conducted by Cassinfo:
- 60% of respondents say the number of bring your own device (BYOD) users at their organization has increased since last year.
- 85% say they have at least some BYOD users
- 36% say they have 1,000 or more BYOD users
Industry Week Magazine stated, “Professional service firms must determine a long-term strategy for integrating mobile devices into both internal and customer-facing processes.”
Unfortunately for CIO’s and IT Managers within professional service firms, developing a singular mobile service model isn’t practical. How, then, with so many people using their own smartphone, can professional service firms control and manage how their users communicate and interact with cloud-based applications.
The ideal solution, as mentioned above, would be to implement a unified communications solution. Unified Communications utilizes a single platform made up of different products and technologies which consolidate a user’s communications. Unfortunately, UC solutions can be costly and require constant updating as technologies change so rapidly.
Short of a full UC solution, one way professional service firms are adding control to mobility is through the use of a Voice over IP system. By utilizing VoIP, firms can route calls through the corporate system to reach an employee’s mobile device transparent to the caller. Employees can also make calls from their smartphone through the VoIP system to reach clients.
IT managers are also using apps from their software vendors which can track user interactions from their smartphones.
The mobility issue is one that will continue to pose challenges to professional service firms for the foreseeable future. With so many people opting to use their personal smartphones for both personal and business, putting broad controls in place now can at least offer a fair degree of management.
To learn more about how VoIP can help manage your fleet of mobile device users, contact a representative at N2Net today.