Tapping enterprise mobility

Johnny Karam, vice president, Citrix Middle East and Africa, chats about opportunities and how channel partners can help clients to securely manage corporate data across a mobile workforce.

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Tapping enterprise mobility
By  Manda Banda Published  December 16, 2013

Johnny Karam, vice president, Citrix Middle East and Africa, chats about opportunities and how channel partners can help clients to securely manage corporate data across a mobile workforce.

Channel: What technology trends has Citrix been tracking in the MEA market over the past 12 months?

JK: Last year saw the proliferation of smartphones and tablets use, followed by the implementation of tools to harness these devices for business productivity. Subsequently in 2013, many enterprises are being faced with a huge number of different form factors, proprietary platforms and devices coming into the workplace. Consequently, there has also been a continued surge in staff downloading personal applications for business purposes – bringing the question of how they should be governed to the fore.

Our most recent data examining the adoption of mobile work styles in the Middle East, conducted by YouGov, highlighted that companies are missing an opportunity to attract and motivate staff by offering a flexible working environment. Less than half (46%) of employees report their companies equipping their staff with the technology to access data remotely and only one in ten (9%) actively offering a policy known as BYOD – bring your own device – in the workplace.

Channel: How can enterprises provide secure access of their networks for their mobile workforce?

JK: To securely manage corporate data across a mobile workforce, organisations need to proactively manage the information, apps and devices with the right policy and technology solutions. That means seamlessly delivering access to corporate networks from wherever staff may be and on whatever device they choose to work.

Channel: Which technologies do you think are the most-sought after in the MEA region for sectors such as enterprise, SMB and consumers?

JK: With the Middle East being one of the world’s most connected regions, we are witnessing the rise of the ‘always-connected’ user, and this is driving the need for best-of-breed solutions in cloud computing, mobility, virtualisation, networking and security, and social collaboration. With this in mind, Citrix is highlighting how its solutions portfolio can mobilise every aspect of work and bring the reality of mobile work styles to any business in the region.

Channel: What was your main highlight at GITEX Technology Week this year?

JK: GITEX aims to provide an opportunity for everybody who is interested in technology to interact with one another and this year’s event was no different. Following our successful participation at the 2012 edition, Citrix returned to the Middle East’s flagship ICT event to showcase a complete suite of solutions that are helping our customers embrace mobile work styles to succeed in a dynamic and mobile world. At the event, Citrix highlighted a number of solutions to allow businesses across the Middle East to embrace mobile work styles, including: Unified Storefront, Desktop and Application virtualisation and bring-your-own-device.

Mobile work styles are not just about devices, they are about people and the changing nature of work. This evolution has been amplified by the consumerisation of IT and the rapid adoption of mobility and cloud. As work becomes more complex and unpredictable, people need simple solutions that let them get more done, more quickly. At GITEX, Citrix also demonstrated new ways for customers to mobilise their businesses by delivering desktops, apps and data as true on-demand cloud services from both private and public clouds, transforming how they operate, collaborate and innovate.

Channel: What channel strategies are you implementing in 2014 for your partners in the Middle East region?

JK: Earlier this year, Citrix announced a global restructure of our channel partner programme. As a result of this change, Citrix is launching two growth-oriented programmes, an enhanced Citrix Solution Advisor (CSA) programme and a new Citrix SaaS Advisor (CSSA) initiative. Both schemes are designed to make it easier than ever for partners to do business with Citrix. They also enable partners to earn greater rewards, establish a competitive advantage in new and established markets and grow revenue by selling complete mobility, desktop virtualisation, cloud networking, cloud platforms, collaboration and data sharing. In the MEA region, we are currently in the process of expanding our channel base in the next three to six months and hope to have a stronger partner network that will deliver value and partner differentiation to improve market reach.

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