Key Considerations When Evaluating UEM / MDM Platforms
MDM (mobile device management), UEM (unified endpoint management) and EMM (enterprise mobility management)—although the terms for these functions continues to evolve, the solution your enterprise business selects needs to accomplish the same goal: Streamline control of your devices and their functionality.
While UEM and MDM solutions have always been important, they have become even more essential with so many employees working in the field or at home. Mobility is the new norm, and employees across nearly all industries and sectors require the right technology to remain productive.
Advantages of mobile device management platforms include easier remote management and support, reduced operating costs, improved regulatory compliance and increased worked productivity. But not all UEM and MDM platforms are created equal, and the wrong one can become a considerable burden for your company.
How do you know what to look for in a new UEM or MDM platform? How should you approach reevaluating your current program? Use this mobile device management evaluation criteria when evaluating your options.
5 Steps for Your Mobile Device Management Evaluation Criteria
Account for all the Hardware and Devices in Your Fleet
Start by taking an inventory of all the equipment that needs support. What type of devices are in your fleet? Are you supporting only mobile computers, barcode scanners and printers or would you like to include point of sale systems, mobile phones, laptops and more? Not all platforms are able to support all device types—keep an eye toward the future and make sure the platform can support the devices you have in service today as well as the equipment you will need as you grow.
Next, consider who owns the equipment you need to support. Some organizations have implemented a Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) policy while others still opt for company-issued devices. There are nuances to each mobile device strategy, and you’ll need the infrastructure that best suits your business requirements. For example, you may prioritize more in-depth tracking and reporting if you’re managing corporate-owned devices.
Look for Comprehensive Operating Software (OS) Support
This is another area that requires you to look toward the future. We’ve recently seen a shift from Windows to Android as the preferred operating system for enterprise devices. Companies whose UEM or MDM platform could not support both were in a difficult situation.
It’s vital for your UEM or MDM solution to be flexible in its operating system compatibility, otherwise you may need to implement a second platform to remedy the gap in coverage. Future-proof your enterprise by selecting a solution that can support a wide variety of operating systems, including new versions, while continuing to support legacy environments.
This can be particularly critical for organizations with BYOD programs which require a UEM or MDM platform that supports all in-service devices, whether they run on iOS, Android, Windows, MacOS, ChromeOS or another system.
Educate Yourself on Available UEM/MDM Features
What features are important to you? How do you interact with the devices you support and what controls do you require? Today’s UEM / MDM platforms come with an abundance of management, tracking and control options, so it’s important to gain clarity on what is most important in your organization and what will help you support technology most efficiently.
Your company’s physical footprint or workforce dynamics may make remote access or control critical. High value equipment may drive you to prioritize a device location feature, which provides real-time data on exactly where all enterprise devices are. Network and data security is top of mind for many organizations, so be sure to consider which features and integrations are available in each platform you are evaluating.
Be clear about which features will provide value to your business and which are unnecessary. As a rule of thumb, the more features a platform has, the more challenging it can be to use and manage. Simpler UEM and MDM solutions are ideal if you only need a few features. Don’t get sidetracked by robust platforms that boast features that aren’t applicable to your company and will inflate both price and complexity.
Consider Deployment, Support and Management
You’ll also want to consider system setup and device deployment. Can the platform push uniform settings to your entire fleet? Does it give you the ability to let the user control their own settings? You’ll want a platform that provides functionality in-line with your specific requirements.
The same goes for device reporting. Most UEM/MDM platforms have relatively similar reporting functionality. However, you’ll want to be sure to review it as part of your evaluation process and ensure it supports the range of devices that you have in your fleet.
Technical support and troubleshooting should be easy to coordinate when required. Learn more about the platform’s customer service structure, and how they prefer you to interact with them. When issues arise, you’ll need access to technical resources and want problems resolved within a reasonable timeframe to keep your business moving forward.
Some systems and devices are marketed as being easy to set-up and deploy, which can be misleading when you consider the overall scale of an enterprise mobility program and the cost of your team’s time to fully deploy. In some situations, it’s more cost effective to partner with a managed mobility services provider and utilize their expertise. These partners can offer support levels ranging from ad hoc consulting to white glove 24/7/365 managed service plans depending on your internal capabilities and requirements.
Consider the Investment for a Comprehensive UEM/ MDM Platform
While price is clearly a factor in any evaluation process, seriously consider the future of your enterprise and whether the platform will be able to support you as you grow. A cheaper, less robust platform might not be able to support your organization as you expand and evolve. If just one device or OS that you use is not supported, you’ll need to bring on another platform along with additional costs.
Look closely at how pricing is structured, and make sure to read the fine print. If pricing is tiered, consider the ramifications if you outgrow your package and need to upgrade. If they offer an “all in one” price, get clarification on how they define “all features.” This will ensure you’re purchasing everything your business requires.
When selecting an MDM platform, there are multiple factors to consider. Do thorough research so you don’t waste time with a UEM/MDM platform that is not a long-term fit.
Evaluate Your Options with Help from Our UEM Expert
At TRG, our managed mobility services team has partnered with 5,000+ industry-leading organizations to help them create and support seamless mobility management experiences on a global scale. Schedule a time to chat about your UEM/MDM platform options and find the right solution for your business.
TRG is a global managed solutions provider focused on mobility, point of sale and payments. With facilities across the United States, Canada and Europe, we provide the most comprehensive suite of lifecycle management services – from warehouse to boardroom and deployment to retirement. Our mission is to Make Technology Simple, helping customers accelerate projects, drive application success, improve employee/customer experience and maximize ROI. We’re relentless in our drive to find innovative, effective ways to enhance customer operations and challenge conventional thinking along the way. Learn more about why The Difference Is Us at www.trgsolutions.com.