During mobility projects, one of the issues that comes up time and time again is the total cost of ownership, or TCO. Mobility projects are long-term and there is a wide range of associated costs that organisations need to consider. So what are these costs and how can we maximise efficiency for long-term gain to the organisation?
These costs fall into three categories:
Acquisition costs: This includes the cost of whichever device you purchase, the mobile operator and contract you choose, and the lifetime of the device. With such a huge choice of smartphones and tablets now, plus the fact that some devices last longer than others, these costs can vary quite widely.
Operating costs: Often forgotten but equally important are the operating costs. These are the costs of deploying the mobile devices, on-boarding for new employees, managing the devices and retiring them when employees leave. These can vary depending on the reliability and performance of the device, the operating system and the apps that are deployed.
Personnel costs: As with any IT project there is the cost of training staff and providing helpdesk support. Users need a reliable support service so that they can get the most out of the mobility project.
Thankfully, new technology is making it far easier – and therefore cheaper – to deploy mobility projects. Some of the larger customers that we have worked with have deployed to thousands of users using only a handful of IT personnel. This is a drastic reduction in personnel costs when you compare with the hundreds of staff who would oversee a similar-sized desktop estate.
One iOS feature that is particularly useful in terms of cost saving is the Apple Device Enrollment Program (DEP), which we demonstrated during our presentation at the recent Enterprise Mobility Management Conference in London. Apple DEP enables you to simply pre-configure all your company iOS and Mac OS X (even existing ones) so that they automatically enrol with your MDM or EMM solution. All the user needs is their correct username and password, and if they can’t supply this then they are prevented from using the device. So not only does Apple DEP produce significant savings in enrolment costs, it also offers security when devices are lost or stolen.
It’s not just Apple though. New and future versions of all operating systems offer a number of enterprise mobility capabilities designed to simplify and reduce the costs of mobility projects. For example, Google’s Android for Work programme containerises a number of work-related applications, and the latest version of Windows Phone has given us far greater control over certificates and per-app VPNs.
Operating systems are responding to the increasing mobility of the workforce by making it far easier and cheaper to deploy and manage mobile devices. Calculating the TCO is often overlooked when starting a mobility project, but with the range of costs involved and the many ways in which organisations can save money, it is a crucial step. However, the true and most urgent cost of any mobility project is the opportunity cost of not accelerating the project to fully maximise business value. Bridgeway can help your organisation in its journey towards mobility – and enable you to maximise efficiency and TCO along the way.