Mobility-as-a-Service: Cost-Effectively Enable and Manage Enterprise Mobility in the Cloud

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1 A Whitepaper for IT and Business Decision-Makers : Cost-Effectively Enable and Manage Enterprise Mobility in the Cloud An Independent analysis published on behalf of Fiberlink.

2 Executive Summary THINKstrategies has found a growing level of adoption and interest in a new generation of on-demand, cloud-computing, pay-as-you-go services aimed at helping companies grapple with a wide array of business and information technology (IT) challenges. Whether it is business applications in the form of Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), online back-up services in the form of Storage-as-a-Service, or remote Internet protection services in the form of Security-as-a-Service, these web-based services are making it easier and more economical for companies to deploy and manage complex technologies without the hassles of doing it themselves. With over 50% of companies in North America expecting over half of their employees to be using mobile PCs by 2013 and nearly a quarter expecting more than half of their employees to be using smart phones in the next five years as well, mobility has emerged as a key arena to benefit from this as-a- Service technology shift. Most businesses do-it-yourself approach to building a mobility platform has resulted in user support issues, increased IT support costs, and security and compliance gaps, each of which needs to be addressed in That doesn t have to be the case, though, as mobility is well suited for a cloudbased service approach. This is because an Internet-based architecture is the only way to support and control mobile users no matter where they are, including outside the traditional corporate network. THINKstrategies believes that (MaaS) is a highly effective approach to mobilize today s businesses. MaaS is the delivery of enterprise mobility infrastructure using a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) platform. Like SaaS, MaaS has proven to be cost effective and well suited to provide integration among multiple applications and platforms. MaaS allows today s business to: Integrate the full set of technologies required for enterprise mobility Simplify end user mobility and improve employee productivity Simplify day-to-day IT and compliance operations Ensure endpoint and data security Expand the compliance and operations of a business outside the traditional corporate perimeter Eliminate the need to invest capital to build out and continually grow a mobility management platform This whitepaper will examine how businesses can leverage Mobility-as-a- Service to successfully support their increasingly dispersed employees and more cost-effectively achieve their corporate objectives. THINKstrategies, Inc., p.2

3 The Growth of Pay-As-You-Go Management Solutions The escalating mobility management challenges facing businesses are driving a growing number to adopt a new generation of web- or cloud - based, pay-as-you-go services rather than continue to acquire and administer their own mobility management systems. This model is being driven by the broader acceptance and adoption of on-demand, Software-asa-Service (SaaS) solutions. SaaS is a software deployment model in which an application is delivered and managed by the vendor to meet the needs of multiple customers simultaneously. The SaaS solutions are priced on a subscription service basis, often based on the number of users or seats. A widely known example of this SaaS model is Salesforce.com. The SaaS model shifts the burden of getting and keeping an application up and running from the customer to the vendor. SaaS permits users to leverage the software functionality without the burden of deploying and managing the software themselves. SaaS also eliminates the up-front capital costs, along with the ongoing costs and complexities of keeping an application up and running. THINKstrategies has seen a steady increase in customer interest and adoption of on-demand SaaS solutions. Our most recent survey of over 100 companies, conducted in October 2008 in conjunction with Cutter Consortium, found 63% of the companies had adopted a SaaS solution, almost double the percentage in 2007! (See Figure 1.) Figure 1 Percent of Companies Using and Considering SaaS Solutions Source: THINKstrategies/Cutter Consortium Of those companies already using a SaaS solution, over 90% were satisfied with the quality and effectiveness of the solutions, planned to renew and expand their use of SaaS solutions, and would recommend SaaS solutions to their peers. As a result, Gartner predicts the SaaS market will grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 22.1% through 2011, twice the rate of the overall enterprise software market. 1 1 Gartner/Dataquest Insight: SaaS Demand Set to Outpace Enterprise Application Software Market Growth, 08/03/07. THINKstrategies, Inc., p.3

4 The Escalating Challenges of Managing Mobility The mobile revolution promises to be larger than both the PC and Internet revolutions combined. The trends and statistics are clear. Even a global recession cannot stop the continued growth of mobile users and mobile data or the accompanying security and compliance requirements associated with increased mobility. Kelton Research estimates nearly half of U.S. employees work outside their offices at least once a week. Market research firm IDC predicts that there will be over a billion mobile workers worldwide by Mobile technologies are enabling this shift and changing the nature of the workplace. Laptop computers began outselling desktops in 2005, according to market research firm Current Analysis. The number of PDAs and smartphones is also exploding. IDC estimates 60% or more of corporate data now resides on laptops or could be downloaded from PCs. This trend is creating significant security challenges and compliance risks for businesses of all sizes. Based on these realities, THINKstrategies believes that the traditional thinking of mobile and non-mobile users is outdated and businesses need to start thinking of all users as mobile users. Similarly, business should consider all of their data mobile and take precautions to ensure that mobile users are not putting the business at increased risk. To achieve this, businesses need an enterprise mobility platform that addresses the challenges associated with mobility summarized in Table 1. Table 1 Mobility Management Challenges Facing Businesses Multiple Devices Multiple Networks Multiple Platforms Multiple Service Providers Multiple Access Requirements Multiple Security Challenges Multiple Regulatory Compliance Considerations Some of the capabilities required for an enterprise mobility platform are available today for desktop PC and corporate network operations using existing systems management tools. But these tools are not built to reach out beyond the corporate perimeter or deal with the fast changing mobile environment. THINKstrategies, Inc., p.4

5 Relying on existing systems and technologies creates what can be described as a mobile blind spot. Furthermore, these existing products tend to be proprietary and do not integrate multiple networks, vendors, applications, and systems into a single mobility solution. : On-Demand Services for Mobility Management THINKstrategies believes that (MaaS) is a highly effective approach to mobilizing today s businesses. MaaS is defined as: Enterprise mobility infrastructure and operations delivered using a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) platform. Figure 2 lays out the key elements of a MaaS solution that includes a complete cloud-based infrastructure and a SaaS-based management application for enterprise mobility management that integrates the enabling and control of mobile users, devices, applications, and data. Figure 2 Platform MaaS enables users to be universally connected and have anywhere access to their applications and data while the business has everywhere control of it s users, devices, applications, and data. MaaS also allows businesses to cost-effectively deploy and manage the technology necessary to support their increasingly mobile workforce. A MaaS solution should have the following characteristics: Available Everywhere a MaaS platform should be cloud-based and provide user productivity and IT control anywhere, anytime free of the boundary of the corporate perimeter. Universal Connectivity and Access Controls a MaaS platform should simplify connectivity for end users by providing a single, universal user THINKstrategies, Inc., p.5

6 experience, underpinned with a single identity management and mobile access control capability for IT. Support for all Devices a MaaS platform should provide the tools to manage all desktops, laptops, and handheld devices, and, in the future, virtualized desktops, as well. Support for any Application a MaaS platform should be able to integrate infrastructure and security applications from multiple vendors into a single production image. This is because no single vendor can provide all the technologies needed to create an enterprise mobility platform. Highly Secure a MaaS platform should provide enterprise-grade endpoint and data security to all mobile assets no matter where they are located and how they are connected. Consolidated Operations and Reporting a MaaS platform should integrate all facets of mobile connectivity, mobility management, and mobile security into a single operational platform console, in order to eliminate security and operational gaps and to improve business efficiency and the scalability of mobile deployments. While there have been other approaches and models for connecting, protecting and controlling mobile enterprise users, they have each failed the enterprise in one form or fashion. Endpoint agents and single purpose security applications integrated with various connection clients have all fallen short of delivering binary, provable control of laptops, smart devices, Blackberries, iphones, and the rest of the mobile device universe. As a service-based solution, MaaS delivers an operational model to cost effectively and continually control employees, their devices, and their data. A key reason for this is that mobility is very well suited for a cloud-based service approach. An Internet-based architecture is the only way to support and control mobile users who are outside the traditional corporate network. The Business Benefits of The benefits of MaaS help end users, IT operations, and the P&L of a business. MaaS eliminates the need to acquire, deploy, and administer mobile computing and management infrastructure. Instead, companies can leverage the service provider s established and field-tested capabilities. This means quicker deployment cycles and lower ongoing administration costs. Some MaaS providers have been shown to save businesses up to 70% over do-it-yourself implementations of an enterprise mobility platform. Enterprises leveraging MaaS today have been able to deploy tens of thousands of mobile users in weeks, versus what can sometimes be a multi-year initiative. MaaS delivers additional benefits beyond these expected impacts of a SaaSbased solution by: 1. Providing IT and business decision-makers previously unavailable control of users and devices that are outside the corporate perimeter. THINKstrategies, Inc., p.6

7 2. Integrating key mobility systems, including security, wireless connectivity, and systems management, into a single, consolidated mobility solution and operational platform. 3. Simplifying the end user experience for connecting and staying within corporate security policies. 4. Ensuring endpoint and data security is always operating according to corporate policies. With MaaS, enterprises can achieve a new level of productivity because users will no longer be subject to arbitrary limitations of when and how much they can get done when outside the office. The cloud-based approach of MaaS will provide enterprises with an entire mobile infrastructure outside the perimeter, and will deliver a significant increase to their mobile risk management capability through real-time policy enforcement, remediation, and compliance reporting. Summary and Conclusions: Meeting Your Mobility Imperative with As today s workers become more dispersed, companies must give them stronger yet more flexible mobile computing capabilities to meet their constantly changing needs. Yet, today s economic realities and the complexities of mobile technologies are forcing many companies to recognize that they cannot afford to build and maintain their own mobile computing infrastructures and management systems. Furthermore, it is becoming imperative that IT and business decision makers establish comprehensive policies and procedures to govern the use of mobile devices and end-user access to corporate resources in a secure and traceable fashion. solutions can help enterprises respond to the escalating demands of this mobility age. Today s MaaS solutions build on the success of a broader set of SaaS solutions that are gaining widespread corporate acceptance and adoption. Like SaaS, MaaS solutions overcome the inadequacies of traditional, onpremise products, and deliver the functionality companies need to achieve their business objectives quickly and cost-effectively. MaaS shifts the responsibility of the enterprise s mobile infrastructure and management system to the software and service provider. It eliminates the need for additional hardware and staff. It accelerates the implementation and increases user productivity by increasing reliability, scalability, and security. Also, MaaS eliminates the mobile blind spot by providing everywhere visibility and control of mobile users, devices, and data even outside the corporate perimeter that has been blocking traditional IT tools from effectively reaching mobile devices. THINKstrategies believes that all businesses should explore Mobility-as-a- Service (MaaS) as its approach to establishing an enterprise mobility platform. THINKstrategies, Inc., p.7

8 Doing so will result in: Faster realization of value by accelerating the deployment of mobile services and implementation of management capabilities. Lower cost of ownership by eliminating the up-front capital expense and ongoing staff support required to build and manage the mobile communications capabilities. Higher return on investment by achieving greater worker productivity and higher utilization levels due to more reliable and secure mobile communications capabilities. Improved risk management by providing complete, always-on endpoint and data security, plus boundary free visibility and operational control of a mobile users and assets. THINKstrategies, Inc., p.8

9 This independent analysis was sponsored by Fiberlink. About Fiberlink. Fiberlink is a leading provider of Mobility as a Service to companies worldwide. Fiberlink s products allow a business to cost-effectively manage all the elements of its growing mobile operations regardless of where the users, devices, or data are located or connected. Market research firm Current Analysis recognizes Fiberlink for its leadership in delivering secure mobile workforce solutions. Fiberlink is the trusted mobility platform for companies such as Continental Airlines, Grant Thornton and McKee Foods. Additional information about Fiberlink is available at About THINKstrategies, Inc. THINKstrategies is a strategic consulting services company formed specifically to address the unprecedented business challenges facing IT managers, solutions providers and investors today as the technology industry shifts toward a services orientation. The company s mission is to help our clients re-think their corporate strategies, and refocus their limited resources to achieve their business objectives. We help enterprise decision-makers with their sourcing strategies, IT solutions providers with their marketing strategies, and VCs with their investment strategies. THINKstrategies is also the founder of the Software-as-a-Service Showplace (www.saasshowplace.com) online directory and information resource center. For more information regarding our unique services, visit or contact us at THINKstrategies, Inc., p.9

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