The COVID pandemic ushered in the age of remote work. Many companies invested in network infrastructure and technology to make it possible and easy to work from anywhere. Now, with a new variant threatening to disrupt plans to return to the office, remote work is still a priority. Among the needed support services to make remote work feasible are dedicated device management (DDM) solutions. DDM helps manage the traffic and security of smart devices connecting to a company’s servers. Without dedicated device management software, workers might find it more difficult to connect to the office network, secure their connections, and protect their data.
The Rise of BYOD
The pandemic showed that many workers found that their personal devices work just as well as corporate-issued tools and companies welcomed this development. In fact, many firms found out too late about computer shortages and supply chain problems. Thankfully, many employees volunteered to use their own devices in exchange for the ability to work from home.
As a result, the increase in the use of the BYOD (bring your own device) system presented system administrators with new challenges. In addition to managing more connected devices than usual, IT teams had to contend with a new problem. They needed to learn how to troubleshoot different devices running on various operating systems. At the same time, the IT department still needed to maintain the integrity and security of the corporate network. For this, companies had to secure a reliable dedicated device management solution.
Device Management Is More Than Just Security
Of course, it’s easy to assume that dedicated device management is mainly about securing devices and network connections. However, there are far more tasks involved apart from checking log-ins and processing authentications. Other equally important dedicated device management tasks include the following.
Device Restrictions and User Policies
BYOD devices retain their owner’s personal data, apps, and files. Once connected to the network, DDM software must have the ability to manage the device and restrict its use for personal activities. Restricting activities not only help secure the device from vulnerabilities but also helps ensure workers remain productive while on duty. DDM software can also help enforce user policies such as requiring password changes regularly or documenting any changes to the BYOD devices.
Managing Access Levels and Authorizations
Different departments and positions require different access levels to the network. For example, accounting department employees will have access to financial records, but only managers and their superiors can authorize or make changes. Similarly, upper management access levels can pull out usage data from any device to check how workers are doing.
Usage Data and Analytics
Dedicated device management tools can help monitor how users spend their time while connected to the office network. They can also show which tools get used most frequently. The collected data can help managers identify areas for improvement.
Dedicated device management software can also serve as the primary vehicle for applying critical updates or patches to work applications. Instead of requiring workers to submit their devices for software maintenance activities, the DDM software can connect remotely and apply the updates during downtimes. Using this process, the need for call support during installations or updates becomes unnecessary.
Corporate and BYOD Device Inventory
DDM software is able to collect hardware and software information on both corporate and BYOD devices. This helps system administrators keep track of the number of devices and connections at any given time. Monitoring can also include checking location and status, to help pinpoint where users are at the moment.
Maintaining a Device-Agnostic Network
Dedicated device management software can also help ensure that all devices connecting to the office network will get accommodated regardless of the operating system. This allows employees limited with their choice of BYOD devices to still connect to the office network and work from home. Conversely for the office, this software lessens the need to provide remote workers the needed hardware that runs on specific operating systems.
Why Companies Need a Dedicated Device Management Solution
A successful remote work system entails more than just access to the network and a lot of smart devices. Managing the harmonious working relationship between devices remains the key to ensuring network integrity even with hundreds or thousands of devices accessing it at the same time. This is what makes dedicated device management solutions integral to the system.
In addition to helping establish the remote work environment, DDM software also enables an organization to do the following.
Simplify Smart Device Management
DDM software can help maintain network connections across operating systems. This means that employees using iOS or Mac systems should have no problems having the same privileges as users with Windows computers, Android phones, or Chromebooks. DDM not only handles smart devices such as mobile phones, tablets, and laptops, but can also accommodate kiosks, flat panels, VR devices, and Android TV devices.
Reduce Security Risks
DDM software can monitor devices remotely and collect information, including location and applications running. Administrators can simply freeze or lock devices that violate any user policies, launch unauthorized apps, and download or copy sensitive data. Similarly, admins can wipe any data from devices detected outside their assigned geolocation.
Lower Costs through BYOD Acceptance
By allowing workers to utilize their own devices, companies can save millions by reducing hardware purchases and additional upgrades or installations, adding to the already-significant savings companies generated during work-from-home sessions. This includes less consumption of utilities like electricity and internet, as well as savings from the reduced need for office rentals.
Improve Collaboration among Remote Workers
By accepting both corporate and BYOD devices, DDM software helps facilitate communication between workers regardless of hardware. This allows them not just access to the network, but also the opportunity to directly communicate and collaborate with each other. DDM software not only facilitates the exchange but also adds a layer of protection.
The pandemic isn’t over just yet. As companies continue to evolve their work systems, remote work and work-from-home arrangements will continue to flourish. Making sure your workers can safely connect—even with their personal devices—helps provide business continuity especially during lockdowns or emergencies. The added flexibility of allowing almost all types of operating systems also helps, as workers can connect using many different device types. Help your organization maintain this adaptability by ensuring the dedicated device management software performs its role in managing, monitoring, and securing each connected device while it remains attached to the office network.