Data management in the era of the mobile workforce

A new breed of roaming workers is transforming business storage requirements

Tags: CommVault Systems Incorporated
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Data management in the era of the mobile workforce Allen Mitchell, senior technical account manager, MENA, CommVault Systems.
By  Allen Mitchell Published  November 12, 2013

There is no escaping the changing face of modern business. The traditional picture of a company located in an easy-to-travel to building where employees physically work alongside each other, in a fixed and networked computing environment, no longer rings true.

Fifteen years ago, the typical mobile worker was probably a CIO with a laptop, heavily supported by IT and restricted to basic offline computing operations. Widespread support for remote workers was not available and, even if it had been, the technology that would have supported them outside the office was limited.

However, the new breed of mobile workers is now transforming the modern working environment.  Armed with technologies that not only bring flexibility into their working day and improve productivity levels overall, they can now experience an enhanced work-life balance by being able to work anytime and anywhere.

Any early technological limitations on the emerging mobile worker have now largely been eliminated as broadband data speeds and wireless mobile connections have become widely available.  Equally the range of mobile devices has expanded well beyond mobile phones and laptops to include PDAs, notebooks and now tablets. Mobile initiatives are also being proactively put in place by many organisations and telecommuting, virtual workplaces, mobile and wireless computing are now common practice, for all employees at all levels.

It was therefore no surprise to learn that IDC predicted in its report, Worldwide Mobile Worker Population, 2011-2015, that one third of the global workforce would be mobile in just three years, with most significant gains coming from emerging economies such as Middle East.

Facilitating and managing the mobile workforce is no mean feat. The rise of the bring-your-own-device (BYOD) movement not only confirms that mobile employees expect to use the latest lightweight mobile devices to carry out both standard and complex computing activities but that they also expect interactions with enterprise applications to replicate their experiences in the consumer world. Their growing familiarity with search engines and the ease with which business applications can be downloaded onto any mobile device has only raised expectations that they should be able to share, search and restore data instantly - without requiring IT assistance or third-party services.

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