A discussion of corporate mobility management necessitates mention of our old friends policy and process. Today, IT departments are deploying mobile solutions to focused activity profiles such as field service, field sales and management; but as we extend enterprise communications and computing to larger groups of mobile workers, a maturing set of best practices will facilitate the process.
We started this series saying that – at some point in the future – a CIO (perhaps the CIO at your company) will say that the enterprise is mobile and that mobile computing is enterprise computing. At that time, nothing will be "special" about mobility, but it is worth noting the difference between "special" and "different." And mobility is both similar to and different from enterprise management. Mobility is similar to enterprise management in that mobile management platforms seek to accomplish similar objectives to traditional enterprise management platforms. But mobility is different in the added levels of security, policy and process required.
And thus the question of policy and process is that traditional enterprise management platforms have yet to contemplate the policies and processes necessary to make mobility work across the enterprise. So do we write our own policies? Do we develop our own processes? And do these policies and processes exist in a vacuum?
The answer, as we stated in the beginning of the series, is that we need to develop policies in light of the existing processes of enterprise management. We already know what we seek to accomplish, and we already know how to do it with our fixed assets.
Instead of asking our vendors, our partners and our wireless operators to define our policies for us, we should look within our own IT organizations for best practices and technologies we can extend outward. The answer to the perennial question of policy and process for managing mobility lies within.