Aberdeen Group’s April 2012 study Enterprise Mobility Management (EMM) 2012: the SoMoClo Edge supports prior research findings because the CIO must consider enterprise mobility as essential IT infrastructure, and manage it like other core IT assets such as networks, storage, and desktops.
However, the recent convergence of social, mobile, and cloud infrastructure in consumer domains, which Aberdeen has termed SoMoClo, is a driving force in mobile technology adoption, bringing accelerated change to enterprise mobility as well.
Consumer vs. Enterprise SoMoClo
Consumer SoMoClo presumes ubiquitous access to wireless connectivity, collaboration and communication tools, and remote or cloud storage. In this context, enterprise mobility is not a standalone technical ecosystem, but part of a larger continuum of data access and services.
SoMoClo’s converged technology construct subsumes both consumer and enterprise technical platforms, with the primary differentiator in enterprise SoMoClo being its requirement for security, compliance, risk management, and manageability.
If IT could adapt and adopt converged technology only when it was truly enterprise-grade, this transition would be non-disruptive.
Image source: Aberdeen Group March 2012
However, this has not been the experience of many CIOs. Because employees bring direct experience self-provisioning consumer SoMoClo as private citizens, they demand the same degree of advanced technology and services integration in the workplace that they experience in their personal life.
The pressure on IT is intense because of the implied threat from employees, who will say: "give me what I know exists, or I'll self-provision."
Aberdeen calls this self-provisioning of advanced technology the IT-isation of the consumer (versus consumerisation of IT).
An early example of this is the influx of employee smartphones (and eventually tablets) into the workplace that Aberdeen has tracked since 2008, now popularly referred to as the Bring Your Own Device, or BYOD phenomenon (see sidebar).
Impact of BYOD
The increasing power of smart devices and the ability to seamlessly serve both personal and business needs are central to their adoption.
Their rapid rate of evolution, with six-to-twelve month product lifecycles, exceeds the ability of enterprise capital budgets to keep pace, accelerating the self-provisioning trend.
The impact of BYOD goes beyond capital budget relief; its effect on already-limited IT support resources, corporate compliance policy, security and data-loss prevention solutions are widespread.
Aberdeen’s EMM report offers guidelines and best practices for IT to effectively manage these disruptive and potentially transformative forces.
Figure 1 indicates the top strategies identified in response to those pain points.
Almost half of respondents intend to ensure that all mobile devices are compliant with corporate standards; indicating the rising influence of process-oriented IT practices it sets the direction for a well-implemented and compliant BYOD strategy, and counters the anything-goes approach to poor BYOD policy.