Welcome to the age of sovereign mobile productivity


We may finally be entering the age of sovereign mobile productivity where mobile users can be more productive because of improved security and access to backend systems with minimal IT intervention. A more self-sufficient your mobile worker community means a more successful your mobile-first, Choose Your Own Device (CYOD) or Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) initiative.

Here are some signs we are entering an era of sovereign mobile productivity:

Self-service device provisioning

Self-service mobile device provisioning is a crucial indicator that we are entering the era of sovereign mobile productivity. The more that employees, contractors, and partners can do to provision their mobile devices to access enterprise assets the better. IT can focus on more strategic (read billable) work.

Identity management

The advent of identity management solutions from the Ping Identity, Okta, and others could help promote more user independence for accessing cloud applications.I see identity management playing a role because it’s a lightweight setup for a user on their mobile devices.

Right now my iPhone is running multiple identity management apps because so I can access some client systems. Each of the apps was easy to setup. The average end user could set one up using a one-page job aid to guide them.

Robust mobile app clients for cloud apps

Today’s mobile apps are offering features on parity with their desktop application cousins. There are examples across the board where mobile app clients for customer relationship management (CRM), business intelligence (BI) are packing features on parity with the full application.

Intelligent document discovery

“Where’s such and such document,” is a question that haunts many document writers. The question becomes a wee bit more annoying when some or all of the users are using mobile devices.

Intelligent document discovery is using technology to narrow project documents that a user requires for projects. It’s an expanding area that I first caught wind of when I was writing about Huddle, a cloud collaboration provider, back when I was freelancing for TechRepublic. I expect to see harmon.ie, Colligo and other third-party SharePoint client providers continue to innovate in this area through further iterations of their SharePoint/Office 365 client apps. Microsoft hasn’t spoken for themselves here quite yet either. I’ve come across news that SharePoint 2016 is going to be more mobile friendly so stay tuned.

Mobile project management apps

Another sign of sovereign mobile productivity is the mobilization of project management apps. Project team members can now update their project tasks, scheduling, and related information from their personal or corporate-owned mobile device.

iPad Pro

With its 12.9″ screen size and other hardware specifications, the iPad Pro has the potential to extend mobile productivity or be passed over by it. Personally, I think the fate of the iPad Pro is in the hands of enterprise app vendors right now, not so much in the hands of Apple. The initial reviews of the new device have been mixed, but I’m waiting to see some enterprise success stories around the iPad Pro before I pass final judgment.

Final thoughts

The changing nature of the workforce with more remote teams, teleworking, and contractors elevate the importance of mobile devices in the enterprise.

Is sovereign mobile productivity even achievable?

Will Kelly is a technical writer and analyst based in the Washington, DC area. He has worked with commercial, federal, higher education, and publishing clients to develop technical and thought leadership content. His technology articles have been published by CNET TechRepublic, Government Computer News, Federal Computer Week, Toolbox.com, ZDNet.com and others. Follow Will on Twitter:@willkelly.

Image by Tim Mossholder via Unsplash.com

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