Elements of an MDM Strategy Part 5 – Management

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This post is part of a series. The previous posts in the series can be found here:

Elements of an MDM Strategy Part 1 – Defining the Problem Space

Elements of an MDM Strategy Part 2 – Applications

Elements of an MDM Strategy Part 3 – Users

Elements of an MDM Strategy Part 4 – Data Access and Protection

So far we have focused on elements of an MDM strategy that are more heavily weighted towards creating a high quality user experience while meeting enterprise policy requirements. Today’s post will focus on the management and manageability aspects of your MDM strategy. These are the elements that can make the implementation and operation of your strategy easier.

“Management” is part of the phrase “Mobile Device Management” but what does it mean in the mobile device context? Management refers to the services and capabilities that will enable IT to measure and meet the objectives of the strategy. These services and capabilities include (but are not limited to) the following:

  1. Monitoring (users, devices, compute, storage, etc.)
  2. Reporting
  3. Provisioning & Configuration

These services and capabilities can all be very complex depending on your use case scenario. In the following sections I will provide some key questions that should be answered for each of these services and capabilities.


  1. Do you have the legal ability to monitor the devices (consider BYOD)
  2. Do you require agentless or agent based monitoring capabilities? Perhaps a mix depending on use case? Are agents available for your devices?
  3. Will you enforce policies or simply monitor adherence?
  4. Will you require remote management capabilities (E.g. remote/selective wipe)


What are your reporting needs? Do you have specific compliance reports (regulatory or otherwise) that need to be available to auditors? Is your device ownership model (BYOD, CYOD, COPE. Etc.) driving specific reporting requirements. Some examples of the types of reports that might be required include:

  1. Devices
    1. Device Hardware (make, model, firmware, memory, camera, IMEI, SIM, carrier, etc.)
    2. Device Software (OS Version, Apps Installed,
    3. Device Configuration (PIN, encryption, certificates, jail broken, etc.)
  2. Users
    1. Which users are using which devices
    2. Which users use the most bandwidth (exceed quota, etc.)
    3. Which users are roaming regularly
  3. Security
    1. Last successful connection by device and user
    2. Failed connection attempts
    3. Device Locations

Provisioning & Configuration

Provisioning deals with how devices will be delivered to users. IT might be driven by your device ownership model and will involve answering some of the following questions:

  1. How will devices be delivered to end users?
  2. How will Applications be delivered to devices?
  3. Will it be different for different platforms?
  4. How will configurations be maintained overtime?
  5. Will automation be required to make it more efficient and scalable?

Next Month

Now that we have a covered Applications, Users, Data Access & Protection, and Management – The Topic that I know you have all been waiting for – DEVICES. Stay tuned.


A great reference for BYOD with a Microsoft slant can be found on TechNet.  I got a many of my ideas from this guide.

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