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    Survey Finds Mobility Makes Businesses More Competitive

    CDW LLC (CDW), a leading provider of technology solutions to business, government, education and health care, recently published The Mobility Edge: CDW’s 2012 Small Business Mobility Report, which is based on a survey of 752 mobile device users and IT professionals from U.S. small businesses in five industries about their use of smartphones, tablets and laptops. The report focuses on trends in small business use of mobile technology, such as bring your own device (BYOD) and use of productivity-enhancing apps; the challenges of mobility, such as managing security of mobile devices and reducing the risk they pose to company networks and data; and what small businesses can do better with the advanced capabilities of today’s mobility solutions.

    The survey found that almost all small business users surveyed (94 percent) believe their mobile devices make them more efficient, and most (67 percent) believe their companies would lose competitive ground without those devices – which may explain why IT managers surveyed report that 89 percent of their employees use personally owned mobile devices for work. There is some risk, though, and just 51 percent of those IT managers say their company has an effective strategy for managing and securing all of those additional devices.

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    Click through for findings and recommendations from a small business mobility study conducted by CDW.

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    Small businesses agree: Mobility delivers many benefits, to customers, owners and employees alike, making small businesses more competitive.

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    Smartphones provide both users and companies the biggest benefit among mobile devices.

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    According to IT managers, 89 percent of small business employees use their own personal mobile device for work, but the challenges lie in managing and securing mobile devices.

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    Secure personal mobile devices: 89 percent of small business employees use their own devices for work. Protect your network and data accordingly.

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    Add MDM: A mobile device management (MDM) solution can simplify policy, security and other facets of management. Speak to a trusted solutions provider to find out which solution best fits your company’s needs.

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    Consider MAM: Mobile application management solutions (MAM) encourage consistent use of apps across an organization, simplify collaboration, protect the company’s data and reduce employee resistance to MDM in a BYOD setting.

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    Comprehensive mobility management services: Some providers offer cost-effective management of devices and apps, from inventory control, carrier management, provisioning and help desk to lifecycle management.

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    Involve your customers: Mobility can be great for customers, too. Consider offering them mobile apps and optimizing your website for mobile platforms.

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