Whether your mobile workforce is operating under BYOD policies or using company-issued devices, it’s critical to know what devices are there, what software and applications are running, and who’s accessing and backing up all that data. Here’s why IT departments managing mobile workers need reliable, affordable, robust asset management solutions.
Know What Devices Are Accessing Your Network
Many systems use a single-factor authorization process, usually just a name and password. This information is usually stored right in the device, allowing access to your system to anyone who clicks that button. But who is actually logging in everyday? From where? Using what device? This is important for security purposes — especially since mobile workers are far more likely to misplace a device or have it stolen, putting access to your system in the wrong hands.
Knowing what devices are out there also helps you identify former employees who are still accessing the system. There are also more practical reasons for identifying devices on the network, including the ability to update and provide security for a variety of operating systems, and being able to manage critical backup for all information and devices.
Know What Apps Are in Play in Your Environment
Studies show that the majority of IT managers don’t even know what apps are being used for business processes. This leads to compatibility issues, a lack of the ability to streamline operations, and no way to control the costs of mounting numbers of third-party apps. These apps also introduce security issues, especially if there are no company policies regarding security settings and privacy settings. Apps are notorious for gleaning information from mobile users, including contact lists, geolocation, and other information that might include proprietary corporate data or sensitive data on clients and vendors.
Know What Licensing Issues You’re Responsible for
Many applications are subject to licensing requirement, and hefty fees can be levied against companies that are out of compliance. Companies going after cyber piracy and more are conducting audits and levying fines for non-compliance. The average company is 20 percent under-licensed and fees of $1,000 per instance of non-compliance add up quickly. Without asset management, companies can be blindsided with these audits and associated fees, even if their non-mobile workforce is completely up-to-date on licensing.
Know When You Are (or Aren’t) Compliant With Regulations
Many industries operate strict regulations regarding where, how, and by whom data is stored and accessed. Some regulations also include requirements for backing up critical data, in case it is needed for litigation or other purposes. Asset management assures that regulated data is kept where it’s supposed to be, accessed only by those authorized to do so, and that backup procedures are in place to protect the data in the event of a device failure.
Keep Costs Under Control
Is your company paying for three, four, or even five different apps to do the same thing? Are devices frequently lost or unaccounted for? If you know ahead of time that a number of devices are nearing the end of their lifespan, you can get better deals by negotiating bulk prices with your vendors. Asset management for mobile devices keeps costs under control in many ways, including the ability to track down lost or faulty devices, ordering only as many devices as are truly needed, and knowing when devices need replacement so you can get the best deals on replacements.