Prepping your UEM strategy? Tips for a successful deployment

Unifying all your corporate devices under a single management console can increase efficiency and cut costs. But a successful rollout will take time and is likely to be hampered by a transition away from legacy apps, retraining for IT staff – and likely pushback from users.

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Moving toward a Unified Endpoint Management (UEM) strategy should be a major corporate goal over the next several years as mobile devices proliferate in the workspace and cloud applications replace legacy, client-based software.

Research firm Gartner predicts that 80% of worker tasks will take place on a mobile device by 2020, increasing the momentum behind UEM.

What began almost a decade ago as somewhat ham-handed mobile device management (MDM) – controlling access to enterprise smartphones and tablets often after employees signed onerous agreements – has evolved into today's enterprise mobility management (EMM), which includes mobile application management (MAM).

Now, enterprises are being pushed toward UEM, which is in many ways represents a return to MDM capabilities through the use native mobile management APIs included in modern operating systems. Those APIs allow firms to manage desktops, laptops, mobile devices, and in some cases IoT devices, via a single console. And with UEM is meant to be operating system-agnostic.

Accoridng to Chris Silva, vice president of research for mobile, endpoint and wearable devices at Gartner, about 30% of enterprises are either actively using UEM already or are beginning to "cross the bridge" from old management to modern management techniques.

Many companies that have already deployed UEM backed into it. They updated Office 365 and started looking at their other apps and decided to start using SaaS applications; or they deployed a BYOD strategy for mobile devices; or they began allowing Macs into their typically Windows environment. 

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