Enterprise Management Associates® (EMA™) recently conducted primary research to create a profile of commonalities among current user workspaces, processes, and challenges. In the resulting report, published January 2017, the following statistics were revealing:  

  • 70 percent of mobile device users and 35 percent of laptop PC users reported they personally own the devices they use to perform their jobs  
  • 40 percent of surveyed end users reported they regularly use insecure methods for sharing company data  
  • On average, 50 percent of all business tasks are performed outside the physical workplace  
  • Only five percent of surveyed organizations indicate they are fully prepared to support all modern endpoint management requirements  

No wonder IT has a difficult time keeping everyone happy. Support personnel face constantly changing challenges from multiple directions.  

The top three challenges of today’s IT team

  1. Maintaining security:The adoption of mobile devices not only increased the number of physical endpoints needing support exponentially, but also broadened the number of operating systems that must be secured. Sixty-eight percent of survey respondents said they had a security breach in the past year. Other security breaches went undetected because organizations lacked the necessary monitoring tools.  
  2. Managing multiple architectures:Today, IT is typically required to support a minimum of four operating environments, each with unique configurations, applications, services, and protocols. According to those surveyed, supporting user productivity across multiple device architectures is one of their biggest challenges.  
  3. Solving more-frequent user problemsTo say that today’s IT administrators are busier than ever supporting end-user requests and business needs is an understatement, particularly if their organization relies on manual processes. Diagnosing problems on remote devices is difficult if endpoint configurations and status information can’t be seen.  

Increased time means increased costs

Whenever the phrase “time-consuming” appears, you know it translates into costs and the need for expanded budgets. Each of the three challenges above demand additional time from an IT team to find a resolution.  

  • Security was identified in survey results as the most challenging to support because it is the most time-consuming, the most difficult, and the most costly.  
  • Management costs increase in proportion to the number of device architectures needing support.  
  • Administrators trained to support only one platform—most frequently Windows—are increasingly asked to resolve issues on other devices, such as those running MacOS or Android. Performing unfamiliar tasks takes more time, which means more cost. 

A shift in thinking is necessary

Overcoming the challenges of the mobility and multi-device age requires a shift from traditional endpoint management processes. The key to simplifying the management and improving the security of diverse user devices is the adoption of a unified endpoint management platform. 

Mobile management platforms were initially developed and introduced independently of already-well-established PC management solutions. Unfortunately, in many organizations, mobile devices and PCs continue to be managed separately. The use of multiple consoles to perform related administrative tasks—often called “swivel-chair management”—is inherently inefficient and ultimately unsustainable in the face of accelerating requirements for supporting workforce productivity. EMA’s research indicates this is particularly true regarding endpoint security, which was determined to be the most important management service to surveyed respondents and the most challenging to perform. 

An ideal approach employs a single console interface, a common asset database, and a common reporting engine to enable unified endpoint management for all authorized users and devices in the environment. Principally, this involves providing extensible support for non-Windows architectures, such as macOS, Android, and iOS devices. Additionally, a unified endpoint management approach must include fully integrated support for security assurance. In this way, administrators can employ a common set of processes for recording device information, patching and updating software components, provisioning applications, and ensuring continuous security compliance. Additionally, a single set of user profiles defining access rights, privileges, and default configurations can be maintained for all supported device platforms to ensure consistency and eliminate duplicate management efforts. 

Ivanti: Your UEM Ally

To read the entire EMA report, please click on the link below. Then, check out Ivanti’s solutions for true UEM. We can help you to discover and inventory your network endpointsmanage and remotely control PCs and Macs, and manage your mobile devices. Talk with Ivanti, and get closer to true UEM sooner at your enterprise. 

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