Corporate IT is in a fight for its very existence. It sure seems like it, anyway, when you read the alarmism coming from the industry publications:
- Organizations need to “adapt to the end of ‘imperial IT.’”
- IT is making itself irrelevant.
- The IT department is dead!
From your point of view, it might be a bit premature to write IT’s obituary. After all, judging from your workload, there are still plenty of users in desperate need of IT assistance. But the fact remains, the popular view among the corporate rank and file is that IT departments don’t promote productivity, they hold it back.
As we wrote recently, only 43 percent of non-IT personnel consider IT integral to their business. IT is a “drag on innovation,” they say.
In recent years, powerful technology has become more accessible at the consumer level — the iPhone and Ipad are just two examples. Users have become more proficient. That IT would prevent them from using the devices they know and love to work more efficiently from more places seems, to many users, helplessly backwards.
You may not realize your department is limiting your company’s employees. Maybe you’re distracted by legitimate concerns those employees may not share: data security, disaster recovery, and cost control, among others.
So to help you see the situation from their perspective, here are few ways employees may feel IT is limiting them (especially in their use of mobile devices), along with how you can transform your department from a limiter to an enabler.
1. Not Allowing Employees to Use Multiple Devices
Employees don’t just use one device at home. Tablets and smartphones are quickly becoming the preferred online devices for the majority of Americans. But desktops and laptops are still useful for heavy data crunching, writing, and building presentations.
But managing a wide range of devices can be a headache for the harried IT department:
- Understanding every possible operating system — iOS, Blackberry, and the increasingly fractured flavors of Android — enough to support them.
- Keeping up-to-date on industry standards for each device.
- Implementing security features on every device to deal with loss or theft.
The solution: You don’t have to stretch your IT team any thinner. Outsource mobile device management to a team that has the knowledge, experience, and focus to keep up with the latest mobile trends and answer the multi-device demands of your users.
2. Not Letting Them Use Mobile Devices Internationally
Even medium-sized businesses are expanding into the global marketplace. Employees are heading overseas and across borders more than ever. And when they do, they expect to bring along the devices that help them work so productively back home.
But international roaming charges are not cheap. A few video downloads from an employee traveling in Japan can quickly lead to thousands of dollars in overages.
The solution: There are hundreds of wireless carriers in countries throughout the world. You certainly can’t keep up with all of them, but a managed mobility services provider with international expertise can help you find the best deals with the most appropriate carriers. With the right MMS provider backing you up, you can allow your users to travel with their beloved devices without destroying your budget.
3. Making Them Wait for Help Desk Support
Every new device your company issues or every new BYOD device it supports ratchets up the demand on your help desk. Which one will be the straw that breaks the camel’s back?
Your team already has their hands full troubleshooting software problems, keeping networks running, and fixing printers. The last thing they need is a whole new class of devices to work on. The last thing your users need is to while away unproductive hours waiting for your help desk to get around to their mobile problems.
The solution: A managed mobility services provider can ease the burden on your internal IT help desk in at least three ways (as we covered in a recent post):
- By pre-provisioning devices with everything users need to work productively.
- By drawing on their specialized knowledge of mobile devices to reduce the amount of time needed to resolve issues.
- By troubleshooting the entire range of mobile devices, including all the major operating systems.
Stop Losing Out
If you want to transform your IT department from a “necessary evil” to a valued business driver, a managed mobility service provider can help. Learn more in our complete managed mobility overview.
What do your users say about your department behind your back? Share some stories with us in the comments section below.