With the proliferation of mobile computing devices, as most amply shown in Apple's latest financial results, the time for mobile device management in the enterprise has come.
But the question that IT organizations will need to resolve is whether mobile device management is going to be a dedicated function or something that gets slipstreamed into the rest of the IT systems management portfolio.
Virtela, a provider of a managed set of services for managing enterprise networks and related IT infrastructure, is decidedly in the latter camp. The company today rolled out a mobile device and security management service that leverages the company's investments in building out its Enterprise Services Cloud (ESC) platform. According to Mark Weiner, Virtela senior vice president of marketing, managing mobile devices in isolation from the rest of the IT environment doesn't make good financial sense or sound IT practice. From Virtela's perspective, says Weiner, it's only natural to leverage the capital savings that Virtela made in developing ESC to deliver a variety of services.
No matter what approach IT organizations take towards managing their mobile computing devices, it's pretty clear at this point that they are becoming a much higher priority. In some cases these devices can naturally be managed as an extension of the existing help desk environment. But in many other cases, the convergence of mobile computing and cloud computing services is likely to lead to a complete reorganization of the way IT services are delivered and managed. That may take a little while to shake itself out, but with each new mobile computing device that comes into the enterprise that change becomes increasingly inevitable.