Your CEO Insists on an iPhone. Now, What?
If you work in a PC-driven environment, the first time you’re asked to support an Apple device may just be the day your CEO walks up to your desk and says they need your help setting up their work email on their new iPhone. (Okay, so maybe the request will come as an email, but sooner or later, it will happen.)
Whether they’re tech-savvy or gadget-focused, the entry of this high-profile Apple device presents a great opportunity. As with other requests that aren’t really questions, you’ll have to think fast to consider how to best set your company up to continue operating securely.
Your next step won’t just be to help establish security protocols for this one device but to take this chance to do a larger evaluation of what your team’s security needs already are.
Here are three simple steps you can take to ensure that adding a new OS to the mix won’t disrupt your network, environment, or data security.
Take This Opportunity to Conduct an Audit of Devices
The entry of one Apple device is a great excuse to look around and see if there are more that have entered your environment under the IT team’s radar.
Depending on how strict your security and authentication requirements are, you may find that there are already several other users that are accessing their work email and trying to connect to your company’s secure databases on personal Apple devices.
Once you know how many devices are on the network and what they need, you’ll be able to assess whether or not you’re ready to add a mobile device management solution to help monitor the security of these devices, provide appropriate updates, and enforce your company’s IT policy with greater consistency.
Review Your IT Guidelines: Do They Meet Your Company’s Needs?
In addition to auditing the devices on your network and the software versions installed on them, take a look at your current protocols and governance documents. These will provide you with a starting point for reforming or refreshing your current policies.
To begin evaluating whether the policies you have in place today meet your company’s needs, the first step is to ask the question. Then, ask if these policies will work for the company you anticipate working for in one or five years. While it’s a good idea to review your policies on a regular basis, you’ll be better positioned for change if you have one eye on the future today.
If you don’t yet have a bring your own device (BYOD) or choose your own device (CYOD) policy in place, you may want to start thinking about whether one of these arrangements would be right for your company. It all depends on your goals. If you aim to welcome more Apple devices into your environment, you may prefer to take a proactive stance and put security protocols and device requirements in place before adding more Apple devices.
Forward-thinking policy-making can also help you prepare for a problem that all companies face in one way or another: what to do when an employee departs and takes their devices with them.
Consider Your Options: Is Your Company Ready for an Apple MDM Solution?
Whether you’re just starting to research your options for Apple device management or you’re well into your search for an MDM, there’s no place to start like the products themselves.
Apple devices perform well in a business environment, and they are a great fit for cloud-based companies. Afterall, Apple devices are built for the cloud, which is also a positive when it comes to business continuity and disaster recovery planning. With iCloud, it’s easy to establish protocol to securely backup user information and data on a regular basis.
Additionally, with self-service capabilities, even if your team isn’t fluent in the language of Apple devices, your IT administrators will be well-positioned to provide excellent service and answers on a less-familiar operating system.
The world of three letter acronyms (TLAs) can be difficult to navigate, but with a MDM provider to support your team, it won’t take long to learn.
Embrace the Opportunity to Welcome Apple Devices into Your Network
While an executive is likely to be the first employee to ask to bring an Apple device into your workplace, they are unlikely to be the last. Perhaps you’ll discover that your creative team may be more comfortable on Mac computers for their design needs. Maybe your remote PR team may prefer to use iPhones and MacBooks to manage their projects and communications.
Eventually, you may find yourself facing a small fleet of Mac devices that need to be secured, so it may be time to proactively move your company’s Apple devices onto an MDM solution that can help you manage your business’ needs.