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The Ultimate Guide to Mobile Device Management (MDM)

Mobile device solutions provide an effective and efficient way for your business to handle procurement, deployment, monitoring, security, and support. With the number and complexity of valuable and vulnerable mobile devices used increasing across many industries today, companies can’t afford to go without effective strategies for mobile device management (MDM).

Understanding the wealth of different mobile device management solutions available today and how your company can benefit from them isn’t always easy in such a rapidly changing field. This guide will fill you in on everything you need to know about mobile device management and enterprise mobility management.

Why Mobile Device Management Is Important for Businesses

You might be wondering, “What is MDM mobile device management, and why is it important for my business?”

MDM is an essential task for ensuring that your enterprise mobility solutions are rolled out and maintained effectively. Research by Dell shows that 60% of employees now use mobile devices for work purposes, so no business can go without MDM to accomplish these critical goals.

Proactively Confronting Security and IT Risks

Security (application security) is one of the key benefits that a cohesive enterprise mobility security strategy is absolutely necessary. Ensuring the integrity of mobile devices and the networks they connect to protects your business on multiple fronts.

Having your systems compromised could lead to malware or ransomware shutting down your operations. There is also the risk of data breaches. MDM includes data loss prevention policies to ensure that private data doesn’t fall into the wrong hands. In industries such as healthcare, such a breach can have catastrophic consequences.

Having the right enterprise mobility management and endpoint management solutions in place can reduce security risks. Devices are monitored for irregularities, can have permissions controlled, and are always kept up-to-date with the latest content filtering and security measures.

Reducing Costs Across the Organization

The various mobile device management components that form a complete strategy come together to help lower costs for businesses. In many cases, attempting bring your own device (BYOD) arrangements and compensating employees actually costs more because businesses can’t take advantage of economies of scale.

Keep Mobile Device Security Costs Contained

Managed MDM solutions make sure you are getting the best bang for your buck

Going with professional enterprise mobility solutions for businesses can also reduce costs vs. trying to manage programs in-house. A professional enterprise mobility management solutions provider can provide hardware, software, and support at lower prices than internal or independent IT.

Depending on the specific needs of the business, app management can be much more affordable by going with centralized cloud options instead of distributed software on independent devices. Overall, there are many mobile device management features that serve to cut costs for businesses that take advantage of them.

RFID Mobile Device

Streamlining Workflows

Managing workflows across multiple devices, platforms, and systems is an incredible challenge. Research by McKinsey shows that employees can spend up to 19% of the average workweek simply trying to track down information across disparate systems.

With the right mobile management solution, businesses can improve workflows and flexibility by bringing them under the umbrella of a single platform. The reduction in time spent switching from system to system and tracking down important information allows employees to focus on more meaningful tasks instead.

For many companies wondering, “Do you need mobile device management?” the answer is clear when considering the impact that having mobile device integration on the same platform throughout the organization can have.

Making Your Internal IT Easier

Depending on the size of your business, having an internal IT team attempt to manage bring your own device or enterprise mobility solutions can be an unrealistic and inefficient allocation of resources. Going with a professional solution can greatly simplify internal IT demands.

Identity and access management (IAM) are vital to ensuring the productivity and security of mobile devices and networks. This can be challenging for internal IT teams but is incredibly straightforward with the right mobile device management software.

Using the right platform can streamline IT workloads considerably, making managing permissions, support, maintenance, and more so much easier. Platforms such as SOTI for Android devices can simplify many IT workflows when properly implemented.

Setting Up Your Workforce for Success

Businesses succeed when their employees are able to succeed and thrive in their roles. Today, being able to access the tools they need through mobile devices is a critical part of achieving success. The right mobile management systems can free the enterprise workforce from manual data entry and provide your employees with what they need to always perform.

Transportation and logistics, for example, is an industry where employees can achieve more with the right solution. A cloud-based MDM solution ensures they have access to the right apps and support wherever they are, meaning they don’t have to head back to a central location every time something unexpected happens.

This is true across many other industries as well. Whether employees need to move about on-site or across the country, providing them with the remote troubleshooting and instant support that come with MDM can let them do their jobs better.

The Benefits of MDM

Mobile device management solutions cover a very broad range of business activities. If you’re wondering, “What is mobile device management all about” then the answer is that it provides notable advantages in just about every department. With the right solution, your business can enjoy all of the benefits of MDM.

Reduce IT Administration Overhead

When you go with an MDM service provider, whether for support with BYOD mobile device management or complete enterprise mobility cloud solutions, you’re offloading a significant amount of administrative work that would have fallen on your IT department.

First, having a single platform for endpoint device management means that your IT personnel spend less time searching through disparate systems and files to manage the variety of solutions you have in place.

Your team will also be able to manage everything better with access to complete mobile devices lists to keep track of every device and its current status, maintenance requirements, and more. All of this means less time and money allocated to managing mobile devices across your workforce.

Improve End-User Productivity

It’s clear that professional mobile device management has notable benefits in terms of reducing the resources that your business devotes to device security and maintenance. However, your employees, the end-users of these devices, might be asking themselves, “What does mobile device management do?” from another perspective.

Mobile device management tools are useful for more than handling the back end. Instead, they make working with devices in the office or in the field much easier as well. These solutions make it easy to get apps ready to use whenever they’re needed, along with the great support that comes with enterprise mobility and security solutions.

Providing your employees with an MDM solution with the right app management and secure content distribution can improve productivity for end-users. In fact, research from Samsung and Frost & Sullivan has found that the right applications help save up to an hour of time each workday.

Providing More Visibility Over Mobile Devices

Visibility is a major challenge for effective endpoint security management. Without a unified endpoint management solution, businesses can’t know where devices are, who is using them, or if anything is out of the ordinary.

This same issue is found not just for smartphones but for all IT inventory items. While solutions such as RFID solutions and other tracking methods are essential for certain assets, endpoint management software can take advantage of the built-in wireless capabilities to let businesses maintain full visibility of their devices.

This type of monitoring uses either GPS or other device tracking methods to increase visibility into mobile environments. To always know where devices are. Businesses can automate a geofencing policy to limit access based on location & device integrity, providing an unparalleled level of control over mobile device assets.

Reduce IT Risks

The way your business handles information is important, and going with the right endpoint management solutions can help alleviate IT risks associated with your mobile device policies.

MDM can provide your business with backup policies that reduce one of the most prominent IT risks. Automated backup schedules with a cloud-based MDM is a standard endpoint management practice that can save your business time and money when devices are damaged or compromised.

Combined with both app security, network security, and encryption, backup policies can provide the highest level of security for your business. This protects private data from being breached and important operational data from being lost.

Using RFID scanner for Mobile Device Management

A Unified MDM Solution Can Handle Any Device with Any OS

Tracking down solutions for every device isn’t easy when you have smartphones, laptops, PCs, iPads, tablets, scanners, and printers of various brands and operating systems to take into account. The right mobile device management software can provide unified MDM solution for any device with any OS.

With the right custom solution for your needs, you can handle every aspect of enterprise mobility management through a single platform to save time and money while making workflows that much easier for all employees.

You can easily integrate devices from:

  • Android
  • iOS
  • macOS
  • Windows

Those are just some of the common operating systems you’ll find on devices. An enterprise mobility solution can also work with industry-specific hardware and operating systems, and there’s no limit to what you can do with a custom implementation.

Seamless User On-Boarding

Bringing users on-board is one of the biggest challenges in enterprise mobility management, especially if you’re going it alone. If you need BYOD support and are launching a new enterprise mobility management (EMM) solution, on-boarding is much easier with professional enterprise mobility infrastructure solutions.

It’s possible to greatly streamline user on-boarding with secure content distribution. You can ensure that employees safely receive content distribution, whether forms or instructional materials and that they can access them whenever they need them.

Setting up customizable functions for specific individuals and roles is also easy with the right mobile device management features. Handling device on-boarding and deployment through a single platform can save you a lot of trouble in the long run, especially with access to the dedicated support that mobile device management solutions provide.

If you’re wondering, “What should I look for in an MDM solution?” then easy on-boarding is one of the top answers, especially if your business involves the use of multiple types of mobile devices.

Optimize Mobile Device Spending

The cost associated with mobile devices is one of the most pressing reasons why businesses need enterprise mobile device management. Research by Samsung highlights the potential cost of mobile devices for businesses, with standard devices costing as much as $1,234 per year.

Of course, the individual costs will depend on the specific type of hardware and software being used. How much does MDM cost? Working with a mobile device management enterprise solutions provider can significantly cut costs thanks to economy of scale, unified platforms, and further savings.

Lowry Solutions serves many industries including:

Solutions such as mobile device management as a service may be able to help your business save even more, depending on your unique needs. Working with a professional solutions provider can ensure that your business gets the most cost-effective enterprise mobility management (EMM) solution that best addresses its requirements.

Position Your Business to Enable Enterprise Growth

Technology progresses rapidly, and you need to ensure that your business is situated for maximum growth whenever an opportunity is available. With the right enterprise mobility strategies for businesses, you can be ready to act on any changes in technology, demand, or other criteria that impact your business.

One of the key reasons why mobile device management is important is that working with an enterprise mobility partner makes your business more scalable to allow enterprise growth. If demand suddenly picks up for your manufacturing operation and you rapidly need to increase your warehousing capabilities, you’ll need ready access to scanners, printers, and other mobile devices.

Already having enterprise mobility service with a trusted provider makes it easy to begin new deployments at any time with a team that already knows your systems and your needs. Without that kind of committed support, mobile devices can become a barrier to scaling your business instead of an asset.

How Mobile Device Management Works

Mobile device management services are a clear asset for business, but what is mobile device management (MDM) like in practice? When you work with a trusted service provider like Lowry Solutions, your enterprise mobility management solution will be carefully crafted to your unique needs.

Your unique plan could include a combination of procurement, deployment, management, mobile device monitoring, tracking, security, support, on-boarding, and other services. Lowry Solutions can implement a variety of mobile device management components through various platforms and solutions to ensure that all of your business needs are met.

Core Mobile Device Management Features

Mobile device management includes a variety of deployment, management, security, and control features integral to managing devices across your organization. In general, MDM compliance is mainly focused on smartphones and tablets.

With the right mobile device management tool, businesses can maintain more control over user devices. Physical device security is one key area of focus, with features for compliance, location tracking, real-time monitoring, and methods for stopping unattended access.

Network and data security are also some of the most important aspects of MDM, with threat protection (trusted apps/protection/trusted networks), features to block malicious apps, and automatic updates to keep all software and security features up to date.

MDM solutions can be implemented for both BYOD and corporate devices, providing significant flexibility. These solutions can save businesses money, improve security, and help improve productivity.

Enterprise Mobility Management (EMM)

Enterprise mobility management is often used to refer to similar practices as MDM but can include a wide range of additional features as well. Enterprise mobility solutions are generally more comprehensive and can include application, content, and mobile device security management, along with greater control over identity and access.

Enterprise mobility solutions also include the management of software, applications, and other company resources. Seamless app distribution provides access to these resources when and where they’re needed through the appropriate devices.

Businesses can use enterprise mobility management to carefully control the content on their networks with features such as automated device lockdown (time/session/expiration/location) and improved identity and access management.

Enterprise mobility management vendors will also provide increased support features to ensure that clients can make the most of the wide range of services provided. Enterprise mobility infrastructure solutions are a comprehensive approach to all of an organization’s mobility needs.

Unified Endpoint Management (UEM)

Endpoint management is an essential component of any organization’s IT and security needs. Endpoints include a wide range of devices, including PCs, IoT devices, and other equipment covered by (MDM) mobile device management.

With a unified endpoint management solution, businesses can take a more holistic approach to all of their needs. Security and other key features are all integrated through a single platform that makes management easier and more effective.

Many companies will have unique needs that only unified endpoint management can meet effectively. Working with the right provider to develop a custom implementation is the best route forward for these organizations.

Cloud-Based MDM

When answering the question “which MDM is the best?” businesses must consider the benefits of cloud-based MDM vs. strictly on-premises solutions. A cloud-based MDM can be an incredibly versatile tool, providing secure and straightforward access from anywhere.

Given that many MDM strategies must account for remote work and off-site device use, going with a cloud-based solution is the right step for most businesses today. A cloud-based platform makes it easier for employees to do their jobs with unrestricted access to the tools they need.

While some companies might be concerned about security, cloud-based MDM solutions are generally even more secure. They implement industry best practices to ensure that networks, data, and devices are safe at every level.

Manage Any Platform and Any Device

The versatility of MDM software in the number of devices, software, and platforms it can support is one of its key benefits. According to research from HubSpot, companies have an average of 137 apps in use, and that doesn’t even account for multi-version app support.

A unified MDM solution can handle all of a company’s solutions through a single platform. That includes:

  • Smartphones
  • Tablets
  • Laptops
  • Printers
  • Scanners
  • Industry-specific hardware

The number of MDM software solutions available today means that there is a solution for any company, and custom implementation can tune them even more specifically to your company’s needs. This mobile platform list highlights just a few examples of MDM solutions:

  • Honeywell Operational Intelligence
  • N-Able Remote Management
  • Zebra EVM
  • Extreme Networks Management Suite
  • Getac Device Management System
  • SOTI MobiControl

Working with the right partner can ensure that your company gets the specific solution from this mobile platform list to bring all of your needs together under a unified approach.

Endpoint Management Automation

What is endpoint management? It’s the practice of managing, monitoring, and securing endpoints throughout the organization. It’s an important part of digital infrastructure solutions for enterprise mobility and one that can take up a lot of IT resources.

The right solution can significantly reduce workloads through automation. While essential, many of the tasks involved in endpoint management automation are routine enough to be handled by software alone, and others can be significantly streamlined.

This lowers costs and also ensures that the latest security updates and features are always in place. It also provides improved insight into endpoint management with automated reports that let your organization stay on top of any issues and plan for continuous improvement.

Dedicated Management Policies

Throughout your organization, you likely have a wide range of different mobile devices, each of which is used by employees in different roles in different ways. A one-size fits all solution to MDM is rarely appropriate. Instead, the right solution can allow for dedicated management policies for different categories of devices.

Companies can implement specific policies for BYOD arrangements, including containerization that delivers the best in security. Enterprise devices can fall under their own set of rules, incorporating location reports (locate devices) and other features for enhanced controls.

Your company may also incorporate a wide range of IoT devices. You may have portable printers and scanners throughout the factory floor or warehouse that require their own policies distinct from mobile devices assigned to specific employees. Dedicated management policies provide the versatility needed to handle every device appropriately.

Mobile Device RFID

Your MDM Solutions Key Features

Mobile device management solutions have a number of key functions that help improve operations, efficiency, and security for your organization. These are just some of the ways that a cohesive mobile device management platform can make an impact on your operations every day.

Apps

Mobile devices require the appropriate apps to provide the necessary functionality that your employees need to do their jobs. Distributing and managing apps for many employees across different roles isn’t easy.

With an MDM platform, companies can control device peripheral settings to allow for the installation and use of specific apps. They can also choose to partially or fully restrict other app installations in order to prevent malicious apps from causing harm.

The software can auto-enforce restrictions, stopping unauthorized use before it happens instead of following up afterward. It’s also easy to enforce/defer/deny updates for any apps installed across the organization.

Content

Along with apps, MDM solutions also provide more control over the content. Employees throughout any organization rely on digital resources to get their jobs done, whether for initial training or references that they use every day.

An MDM solution facilitates secure content distribution, making it easy for authorized users to access content through the cloud without compromising security. Using these platforms also improves productivity, reducing time spent looking for resources by adding intuitive features such as easy search.

Centralizing content distribution makes things easier on the management side as well. When asking, “What is the best device management system?” it’s important to consider how it can benefit both employees and management.

Security

Research by Verizon shows that ransomware breaches increased another 13% in 2021, highlighting the need for proper security measures. Many phishing and ransomware attacks target mobile devices used by employees, and the security features of an MDM solution dramatically reduce risks.

An MDM solution provides a wide range of security features. Among the most important is the ability to coordinate and roll out security software for devices through a centralized platform. Companies can ensure that all devices have the software they need and that everything is up to date.

Additional features can improve network and data security as well. With the right cloud solution, apps and data can remain securely in the cloud, minimizing the potential risk of compromised devices. Companies can also simplify digital signage management with features such as user authentication.

Kiosk Mode

In many cases, companies require mobile devices to operate for a specific purpose, often with just access to one or several apps. Allowing the full functionality of these devices would pose a security risk, which is why MDM solutions provide kiosk mode as an option.

When kiosk mode is active, only certain features can be used on the device. Companies can implement single/multi-apps kiosk lockdown for devices at workstations to provide access to required apps, but not the ability to install new apps, change settings, or use unauthorized apps. Customizable home screens can allow any device to be implemented with kiosk mode.

There is also a wide range of options for secure browsing with kiosk lockdown. MDM can prohibit access to restricted websites, similar to parental supervision policies on consumer devices, or even only provide access to a pre-approved whitelist of sites and other resources.

Remote Control

Mobile device management remote control is one of the most useful features that can be easily implemented with the right MDM solution. This feature can enable remote control (lock/alarm/locate/wipe) over company devices, which is a vital tool for monitoring use and improving security.

The platform allows companies to send remote commands to any given device. This can be used to lock devices showing suspicious activity, activate an alarm to help physically locate devices, and even wipe a compromised or stolen device to protect data and network access.

Depending on the specific type of device, remote control can enable additional features as well. Remote scanning and printing management are just a few examples of use-specific remotely controlled devices and their applications.

Location Tracking

Being able to track devices in real time provides a clear benefit for companies and is a standard feature of many MDM solutions. Whether to ensure that employees and equipment are where they should be or to prevent theft, location tracking for mobile devices is critical for businesses with deployed devices.

Geofencing policies are among the most effective uses of location tracking. Geofencing can establish boundaries for the use of devices, whether that means restricting them to your facility or to pre-approved routes. When location tracking detects that a device is outside the geofencing boundaries, it can restrict some or all of the features of the device.

Companies can also receive alerts when devices aren’t where they should be, helping prevent lost or stolen devices and making recovery a much faster and easier process.

OS Update Management

Keeping operating systems up to date is an important part of maintaining security and ensuring the best performance from all types of devices. Research by Avast shows that 55% of all software is out of date at any given time, opening up opportunities for network and data threats.

OS update management can be easily automated and tracked with MDM software. Instead of having to manually review the OS status for all devices, many of which have different operating systems, your company can rest easy knowing that your MDM platform has it handled.

You won’t have to commit resources to determine how to schedule updates and won’t have to worry about individuals who skip updates. Even if you’re running custom firmware, there are still some elements that require updates, and an MDM solution can automate that process.

Mobile Device Management Best Practices

Implementing the right MDM solution for your business can have numerous benefits and expand your capabilities in terms of efficiency and security. However, what exactly does implementing the right MDM solution mean? Be sure that any partner you work with can provide these mobile device management best practices.

First, you want a partner that provides a smooth, efficient transition to your new service. Making the transition to MDM services can be a challenge if it isn’t carefully matched to your company’s unique needs.

At Lowry Solutions, our expert team takes the time to get to know your business and provide a custom implementation. We carefully fine-tune the specific hardware and MD software your company needs, along with the overall platform that coordinates your MDM.

Your company also needs to know that it’s getting the full package when it comes to MDM service. Lowry Solutions provides a comprehensive solution tailored to your needs, including deployment, support, tracking, alerts, custom dashboard implementation, and more.

The best practice when implementing MDM is to go with trusted professionals from the start. You can ensure the greatest possible benefit and a streamlined implementation by reaching out to Lowry Solutions about our MDM solutions.

MDM Use Cases

Mobile device management is a versatile service that can provide advantages for organizations across many different industries. Any business that needs to deploy mobile devices for their operations can benefit from the ease of use and security that come with the right MDM platform.

Healthcare and government are both industries where the security of MDM is paramount, along with other industries handling private information. MDM can reduce the risk of data breaches due to compromised mobile devices. In industries dealing with personal health information and other private information, those breaches can be incredibly costly.

MDM also provides a framework for kiosk implementation in manufacturing, warehousing, and other industries. In these cases, workstations may require access to specific apps, but providing full access to devices can cause security concerns. With MDM, mobile devices can be implemented for the unique demands on the factory and warehouse floor.

These are just a few examples of the industries in which Lowry Solutions provides unique MDM implementations. Any organization that has smartphones, laptops, remote printers and scanners, or other mobile equipment can benefit from increased security, reduced costs, and improved productivity with a dedicated MDM strategy.

MDM Resources

Lowry Solutions is committed to providing the best in MDM service for our clients. We want our clients to understand the benefits that MDM can provide, so we offer a variety of resources that you can access today to find out more about MDM and what it can do for your business.

You can see our latest case studies highlighting the successful implementation of MDM solutions and strategies for businesses across many industries. If you aren’t sure about MDM for your industry, you could be surprised by the difference MDM can make.

You can also view our ebooks for the latest in industry insights. Anyone who researches the latest developments in the industry can benefit from our exclusive webinars as well, featuring discussions between Lowry Solutions experts and our partners.

Lowry Solutions also provides blogs featuring unique insights into industry-specific implementations and other topics concerning MDM. You can find answers to questions ranging from “what is enterprise mobility management” to “what are the newest features available today?”

And, of course, you can always reach out to the team here at Lowry Solutions to find out how our MDM solutions can help address the unique needs of your business.

RFID Scanner Mobile Device Management

Frequently Asked Questions

We’re always happy to answer any questions about MDM for our clients. Here are some of the most common questions we get and their answers.

What is mobile device management?

Mobile device management is the strategy, software, and solutions that go into managing the deployment, use, and security of mobile devices. These mobile devices can include smartphones and laptops, but also a wider range of devices, including scanners, printers, and industry-specific equipment.

Do you need mobile device management?

If your business has mobile devices deployed, either with employees or within your facility, then mobile device management could be right for you. Innovative options such as device as a service can provide affordable MDM solutions at any scale, no matter how small or large your business is.

What does mobile device management do?

Mobile device management helps reduce the IT workload associated with managing devices by bringing everything together into a single platform. It also helps improve security and productivity with features including automatic updates, device tracking, and more.

What are mobile device management examples?

You can find examples of mobile device management throughout many industries. Manufacturers and other operations use MDM to implement kiosk mode at workstations, hospitals use MDM to restrict access to private health information files, and industries of all kinds use MDM to manage user permissions, apps, and more.

What should I look for in an MDM solution?

Above all else, you need to look for an MDM solution that addresses your key business needs. Every company is different, which is why you should work with professionals like the team at Lowry Solutions to ensure that you get the right solution and custom implementation you really need.

What is the best MDM system?

There’s no one-size-fits-all MDM system out there that’s right for every company. The solution that’s best suited to your company will depend on the specific types of mobile devices you have in use, the size of your business, the software and systems you use, and many other important considerations.

How much does MDM cost?

MDM cost can vary widely depending on the types of devices and specific software and applications your business needs. However, going with an MDM service provider can save significant money compared to handling MDM internally. You can make better use of your IT resources and enjoy the savings that professional MDM can offer.

Does Apple have an MDM?

Various Apple devices have built-in mobile device management capabilities. These capabilities allow Apple devices to connect seamlessly to MDM platforms, including Apple Business Manager and third-party MDM software.

What is Microsoft MDM?

Microsoft products feature MDM through Microsoft Intune. This can be used with Windows and other devices. Microsoft Intune can be integrated with other MDM solutions to manage these devices more effectively.

What is Windows MDM?

If your business is still using Windows Embedded Handheld for various mobile devices, you’ve been doing so without support since 2020. To ensure continued security and functionality, you should transition to an Android OS as soon as possible.

What is mobile device management for the iPhone?

iPhones and other Apple devices have access to Apple MDM, which allows for control over permissions and other features. This makes integrating Apple devices into overall enterprise mobility strategies a straightforward process.

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