What is managed mobility services (MMS)?

By Jonathan Crowl

Mobility is revolutionizing how enterprises do business. It’s also forcing monumental changes within IT teams. With new devices, technologies and employee behaviors come the need for new policies, security measures and device management strategies. These — alongside a range of other activities and services — are designed to support an increasingly mobile workforce. Some of these services need to be outsourced to external providers and labeled broadly by Gartner as managed mobility services (MMS).

Exactly what is managed mobility services? To put it simply, MMS is a suite of services that maximize the potential of mobile devices while reducing security risk and easing the burden on IT departments. These services enable remote access to enterprise data through the cloud while ensuring the company isn’t at risk of any security breaches. Managed mobility services solutions also provide a method for increasing worker productivity while keeping costs under control.

Download Gartner report on managed mobility services

As a Gartner report highlighted, these external providers can vary widely in their range of service, vision for MMS and ability to offer an effective, comprehensive solution. Before settling on a vendor, enterprises should evaluate a provider’s services and how they’re rendered.

Understanding core deliverables for managed mobility services

MMS is an umbrella term that encompasses several critical services that ensure effective enterprise mobility. According to Gartner, these services include the following:

  • Sourcing and logistics management
    These are the systems used to acquire and activate mobile network services, which provide the necessary infrastructure for enterprise mobility.
  • Mobile service management
    This refers to the inventory of network contracts and devices, as well as device audits and usage logs. Some usage management can also provide telecom expense management, which keeps communication costs under control.
  • Device and system management
    This is the optimization of a mobile framework, including device performance and technical support. The demands placed on this aspect of managed mobility services are determined by whether devices are corporate-owned or part of BYOD policies.
  • Application and collaboration management
    These services focus on the support of enterprise collaboration through the integration of applications and operating systems.
  • Security and content management
    This deliverable involves the unique challenges and concerns faced by an enterprise mobile network.
  • Program and financial management
    This service relates to any outsourcing arrangements made by the company as well as smaller financial details, such as warranty management, device upgrades and auditing.

Many external providers offer some or all of these core services, but the specific functions and performance levels can vary widely. As such, enterprises should do their research wisely before they make an investment. Instead of asking, “What is managed mobility services?” they can go one step further and ask service providers, “What can your managed mobility services offer my business?”