Mobility has quickly risen to being the number-two technology priority for CIOs as opposed to three to four years ago, when it was ranked number 121. Sixty million tablets and 175 million smartphones will be lining the pockets and satchels of the workforce in 20152.

1 Hunting and Harvesting in a Digital World, Insights From the 2013
   Gartner CIO Agenda Report
2 Mobilize Your Collaboration Strategy, Ted Schadler, Forrester

H ere at Cisco, employees have the flexibility to choose their device and to securely connect to voice, video, and data services from anywhere under an any device policy. Internally, Cisco manages more than 64,000 mobile devices today. Rapid proliferation of smartphones and tablets entering the workplace provides the opportunity to improve and accelerate business processes and at the same time provides numerous challenges on how to manage and secure devices, applications, and content in the enterprise.

You might be considering or deploying a bring your own device (BYOD) strategy and assessing whether your organization is ready to support your workforce’s desire to use personal apps and devices while allowing them to be productive in a secure environment that protects corporate data. In issue seven of Services Dynamics magazine, we provided a high-level preview of a new cloud service, Mobile Collaboration Management Services (MCMS) by Cisco Advanced Services.

How can MCMS help you?

MCMS unlocks the productivity benefits at the intersection of mobility and collaboration from the desktop to any device, anywhere, anytime. How does MCMS accomplish this? MCMS is based on the concept of an enterprise mobility platform that provides a whole new level of visibility into and control over mobile devices, applications, and data as a cloud-based managed service.

What are some of the primary capabilities of MCMS?

The most important capabilities of MCMS are:

Software-as-a-service (SaaS) delivery model
Easy-to-manage multitenant and scalable
     architecture
Interoperability with existing enterprise infrastructure
Enterprise-class security

The SaaS delivery model enables rapid deployment of MCMS with minimal investment and allows organizations to move from a CapEx to an OpEx model while supporting the latest mobile devices accessing your network.

Manageability in MCMS is accomplished by providing one window and one system to secure all tablets and smartphones, with centralized policy management across multiple platforms delivering greater IT operational efficiencies. With the multitenant architecture, IT organizations can provide each department with the ability to manage device and application policies to meet their individual requirements. Also, IT organizations gain the flexibility to scale and add as many devices as needed and pay only for the actual usage of the platform.

MCMS interoperates with your enterprise infrastructure to mobilize your existing investments. MCMS does not require you to rip and replace your current infrastructure. Rather, through robust APIs and integration options, MCMS easily ties into your existing infrastructure to extend your current capabilities to smartphones and tablets. For example, integration between Cisco Identity Services Engine (ISE) and MCMS extends visibility and control of mobile device management to the campus enterprise wireless network. No rogue devices can enter the network. ISE can uniquely identify mobile devices trying to access the network and then verify with MCMS whether those devices are compliant, allowing a solid baseline of security and policy compliance. Any device that is not in compliance can be placed in network quarantine until it becomes compliant. With this integration, IT organizations can simplify the user onboarding process and set policies to make sure that only compliant devices can access the campus wireless network.

Security

MCMS provides security features to meet the requirements of enterprise customers. For example, IT organizations can enhance corporate data protection by setting security policies and compliance rules to limit corporate email, directory, contacts, and documents access from the MCMS agent. In addition, MCMS cloud certifications include annual independent SOC II compliance audit, Safe Harbor certification on European Union directive for data protection, and Authority to Operate (ATO) in accordance with the U.S. Federal Information Security Management Act (FISMA).

Evaluating the power of MCMS

The first step is to arrange a workshop followed by a five to six-week pilot with up to 50 devices consisting of a demo and setup of administrator accounts in MCMS. During this period, Cisco will answer your questions related to the pilot.

 

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