Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Mobility not just Mobile

   Yesterday I gave a talk at CSO Magazine's The Security Standard conference in NY.  There was a great group of attendees and the conference has been excellent.  My talk was on the Embracing the IT Consumerization Imperative.  You can view the slides on the conference site or my slideshare site.

   One of the important points I made, and a frequent theme for me, is the need for alignment between business and security and IT.  It's too easy for those of us in the technology space to get caught up with the devices, toys and tech solutions.  We too often get disconnected from the business need.  Security and IT groups exist to service the business.  Business drives security; business drives IT... not the other way around.

   IT Consumerization is a popular buzz-phrase and has been for the past couple of years.  It's easy to get caught up in all the cool and new devices, and the tools, apps and sites.  But we need to keep aligned with what the business really needs.

   In this case, the devices and apps are the "flavor of the week".  What's hot this week in mobile tech will be old news soon.  While your users may be asking for these devices and apps, that's not what they really want.  Or, perhaps more correctly, that's not all that they want.  They don't need "mobile" (as in devices and apps), they need Mobility!  It's not about the iPad, it's about the business ability to bring the products and services directly to the customer, user or partner.  It's about getting out of the confines of the office and to be able to do any work, any time, any where.

   We in IT and Security need to "keep our eyes on the prize". The prize is mobility, not just mobile.  Now... you do need to deliver secure mobile.  But you can't put all your time and focus into just the devices and apps.  If you do, you'll miss the next trend and you'll be trailing the business requests.  Mobile is a project... Mobility is a strategy!  If you focus on the strategic value of mobility, you'll be able to anticipate the businesses need and really add value.

   So, don't get stuck on the flavor of the week.  Keep your eyes on the prize; think strategically and add value.  It's Mobility, not just Mobile.

   How are you adding value to your business areas?  Are you looking ahead and thinking strategically?  How will you help provide mobility to your business users?

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