Want Your Business to be More Productive? Start Treating Your Employees Like Consumers

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Here’s an example of how NOT to roll out new mobile technology. Recently, the Brighton and Howe City Council in the UK decided to implement cashless parking using residents’ smartphones in order to get rid of all its parking meters. Unfortunately, they did a rather poor job of it – and paid for that in full. Seniors and others without smartphones complained about access, others complained about a complicated registration process, while still others raged about poor network signals that made paying difficult. City hall was all but swarmed by dissatisfied citizens, including one motorist who was improperly ticketed for over £5,000 (about US $7,000).

Technology has reshaped how we relate and interact to the world around us – including what we demand of our technology. Businesses working in consumer electronics have gotten very good at providing people with quick gratification. Whether we desire entertainment, utility, or information, it’s generally made available to us with a few swipes.

As a result, when we’re confronted with a product that doesn’t provide us with that high level of ease and convenience, we quickly grow frustrated.

So…what does all of this have to do with you? Just as your employees are constantly entering the workplace with new devices, they’re also coming in with new expectations – expectations which I’d argue rest at the root of BYOD.

Modern employees expect that:

  • Their voices are heard and respected within their organization.
  • They can complete their work in the manner most convenient to them.
  • Corporate data is presented in the same convenient format as they consume their personal information.
  • The tools they’re provided with in the workplace are as functional as what they use outside the workplace.

In short, they expect you to treat them as you’d treat your most-demanding consumers. They all but demand it. When any of the above expectations about their business are not met, that leads to frustration, lost time, and lower productivity.

How can you avoid this?

By embracing BYOD and allowing your employees a wide range of choice in the tools, platforms, devices and applications they use in the workplace. On the surface, that’s easier said than done. The mobile industry isn’t exactly known for homogeneity, after all – there are likely to be so many different devices present in your organization that locking down and securing each one on your own becomes a downright nightmarish task, to say nothing of all the problems that arise with privacy and compliance.

According to a 2014 white paper published by Heavy Reading, mobile devices are arguably the weakest links in any enterprise security framework. In order to strengthen that weak link and augment whatever enterprise mobility strategy you intend to put into place, you’re going to require a multi-OS EMM platform.

That’s where BES12: a multi-OS EMM solution by BlackBerry comes in. It allows an administrator to strike the right balance between providing their employees the choice they need while keeping their valuable corporate data secure. It helps them manage their organization’s entire mobile infrastructure from a single console; from there, they can manage approved apps, deploy devices in any ownership model (from BYOD, to COPE and COBO), and control their entire server infrastructure. It features a powerful modern architecture with high scalability to deploy large number of devices on a single server and expand their mobility fleet when required. Combine all these features with an easy-to-use self-service portal that allows users to address the majority of their technical issues, and seamlessly supports iOS, Android, Windows Phone, BlackBerry 10 and BlackBerry® OS devices.

You can read more about BES12 here.

Ten years ago, the world was a very different place. The birth of social media and mobile technology has fundamentally changed how we communicate with and relate to one another. Businesses need to start adapting to that change – both where their customers are concerned and within their own walls.

Embracing BYOD is one way they can do so. By allowing employees to use their own devices while at work, they’ll make their staff happier. And by making them happier – and equipping them with tools they know how to use – they’ll be made more efficient, productive, and loyal.

About Mohammed Ahmed

Mohammed Ahmed is a Product Marketing Manager at BlackBerry who manages global marketing efforts for BlackBerry's Enterprise Mobility Management (EMM) portfolio. He focuses on defining product value proposition, it's messaging and Go-To-Market Strategy. Outside of work, he loves Canadian wilderness and Astronomy.

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