What is the key to successfully delivering an enterprise mobility strategy?
Capitalising on mobility offers a clear path for MNOs to develop an effective enterprise strategy that meets and anticipates customer needs. Services that can be delivered ubiquitously, such as Mobile Unified Communications, should be the cornerstones of any enterprise strategy, as only MNOs can deliver these effectively.
There’s been a good deal of debate regarding what constitutes an effective enterprise mobility strategy – recent research identified a number of factors, including specialised mobile applications, mobile device management and enterprise app stores.
These are nice things, to be sure, and many mobile operators may want to consider them. But there’s something that’s getting lost in such a debate. Mobile network operators already have a key asset that they can bring to bear and make the foundation of their enterprise strategies: mobility itself.
The thing is, in all the debate about OTT applications, CEBP integration and so on, the fundamental attribute that MNOs offer is typically overlooked. And yet, mobility is in and of itself a tremendous advantage. With mobility, mobile users can access the same set of capabilities across a wider set of locations than with any other technology.
Bandwidth intensive or sensitive applications available from OTT or MNO providers are, of course, advantageous in so many ways - and we can expect to see many more enterprise capabilities extended into the mobile environment - but no other provider can offer the reachability of an MNO. OTTs cannot deliver the same ubiquity that an MNO can offer. They can try, but cannot deliver full mobility without the underlying asset of the mobile network. MNOs should therefore use this unbeatable asset as the cornerstone of their enterprise strategies.
This means offering services that are enriched through mobility and onto which further services can be added in the future. It also means meeting and anticipating the needs of an increasingly mobile workforce.
Take mobile unified communications, for example. Office or premises based systems rarely consider the needs of mobile users. Only a truly mobile-based offer can provide the kind of service that today’s employment practices and life-styles need – and mobility is the key attribute that underpins this.
But having launched such a service (that leverages the inherent asset of mobility), MNOs can then take steps to add more capabilities and services. For example, mobile call recording is a service for which there is much demand in order to meet regulatory compliance issues – but one that has not, until recently, been readily available. We’ve just completed a significant deployment across a major Tier 1 network and there’s no doubt that it will become a key service to augment others.
The problem is that many strategists get lost trying to balance the totality of services that they could offer against those which they perceive to be a threat from OTT providers. This misses the point that the OTT services typically depend upon the very asset that the MNO has to offer – mobility.
Instead of puzzling over these intractable problems, MNOs should immediately focus on services that leverage their core competence of mobility, such as mobile unified communications, and then incrementally add new services that take full advantage of their unique (and effectively protected) assets, their mobile networks.