Do I Need Managed Mobility Services or Enterprise Mobility Management? What’s the Difference?

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Mobility Services or Enterprise Mobility Management

This is a good question, especially regarding the world of mobility services and the management of these services for larger modern-day enterprises. There are so many similar and/or related terms for mobility as relates to corporate use purposes that it can be overwhelming, confusing, and downright frustrating for someone trying to learn more in this area.

So, if you are an expense management leader in your organization and find yourself in the process of discovery for enterprise mobile services, the two key distinctions to keep in mind as you move forward with your mobile discovery process are as follows:

1. Enterprise Mobility Management is an In-house approach

Enterprise mobility management (EMM) embraces an in-house model for support. Enterprise mobility management is managed internally – without any third-party TEM support – and is focused on the strategies and supporting tactics needed to manage mobility devices, applications, other tools, and mobile data in-house.  

In contrast, Managed mobility services (MMS), on the other hand, are mobile support services provided by a third-party vendor (e.g., Tellennium or another MMS/TEM provider) to support an internal expense management organization for a large enterprise (e.g., The Home Depot or any other big-name company).

2. Managed Mobility Services is an outsourced approach

Whereas the EMM solution focus is centered around device management, mobile application management, and mobile in-house data management, MMS support is much broader in scope and provided by a third-party MMS/TEM provider.

The support provided by the expense management / MMS provider will be more comprehensive in scope. For example, typical services provided by an MMS provider will include services such as invoice management, audit & optimization, dispute management, inventory management, and mobile help desk.

Other potential mobility needs such as mobile device procurement, mobile provisioning, mobile configuration, mobility monitoring, and mobility maintenance may also be included.

Now, let’s review and summarize in more detail, the important ways in which managed mobility services and enterprise mobility management are different.

5 Ways that MMS Differs from EMM

1. Mobile cost containment and expense management are more effective with MMS

In most cases, say, 80% or more of the time, your MMS provider/partner will be able to drive greater savings and more effectively manage mobile expenses for the organization than your internal team would alone with EMM.

Your MMS provider will have significant industry expertise, employ mobility best practices, possess advanced mobility tools, and have a technology platform designed to optimize for sound mobility operations and mobile expense management needs.

EMM, on the other hand, comes from a much less leveraged position and therefore will often cost more. The potential for savings will be less, due to the need to purchase and cobble together outside mobility tools and invest more in in-house resources, which will be costlier for most internal expense management organizations.

2. Mobility support flexibility is greater with MMS support

With respect to mobile device support and overall mobility service management, MMS services offer greater flexibility to your expense management organization.

This is so because each organization is unique and will have its own strengths and weaknesses. Your internal team may possess strong knowledge around, say, mobile procurement and provisioning; you have several internal folks with vast knowledge and experience in these areas.

This being the case, you may only choose to outsource some of your other mobility management needs such as mobile configuration, mobility monitoring, mobility maintenance, and mobility help desk support.

For the EMM model, the internal expense management team would be tasked with managing all areas of mobility service management and could therefore expose themselves to less-than-optimal operational and expense management for areas they are not as strong. 

3. Mobility scalability is increased with third-party MMS support

Scalability is a term that continues to become more popular within the world of enterprise expense management these days and for good reason.

The modern-day enterprise expense management and mobility landscape becomes more complicated by the day. This is due, in large part, to the proliferation of different mobile technologies and the ever-complicated global enterprise marketplace.

It’s more challenging than ever for organizations to get their hands around and keep up with all the various marketplace volatilities (e.g., the worker shortage, global supply chain issues, vendor M&A activities) along with the continuing exponential acceleration in mobile technological advancements.

A third-party MMS provider is simply built to address these challenges more effectively. Because of its organic investments in leading technologies (e.g., expense management technology platform), strategies (e.g., industry best practices), and expertise (e.g., subject-matter-experts for different mobility functional areas), it’s better positioned to scale up or down, as needed, in real-time.

An MMS provider, therefore, offers more operational and cost control for more proactive mobility management. (An in-house expense management organization would need to try to build to this standard, which is difficult.) 

4. Managed mobility services offer greater scope for mobility management

A strong MMS provider will offer a wide breadth of mobility services to address all your mobility management needs if necessary. Its focus is to manage the full mobility lifecycle if tasked to do so.

Now, this does not mean that your internal expense management organization would necessarily need all MMS services provided by the third-party provider. As noted earlier in an example, you may have an internal team well-suited to address certain mobility functional areas so you may not require their full MMS offering.

The key point here is to soberly evaluate your organization’s needs and engage an MMS provider for help in areas where it makes sense, where the business case can be made, and return on investment is justified. 

A strong MMS provider will be able to show you how this is possible. If they can’t do this, then continue to evaluate other MMS providers until one can demonstrate this and where you feel there is a good fit. 

5. Managed mobility services require trust in your MMS provider

Partnering with a competent MMS provider will yield strong results, especially when you have them aligned to the areas requiring genuine mobility support and where you can really leverage their expertise.

Again, an important takeaway here is that you may be able to manage certain mobility management areas in-house. And if this is the case, stick with your internal team. But it’s important to be honest with yourself about your organization’s capabilities.

For mobility management areas that you know your internal team is not well-suited to, you will benefit tremendously from partnering with a competent MMS provider. Just be sure you do your homework, so you partner with the right provider.

Final Thoughts on MMS & EMM

We hope this article makes clear the importance of a few things. First, you need to complete a thorough and accurate evaluation of your internal expense organization’s mobility capabilities. Know where you are strong and acknowledge areas that are problematic.

Secondly, once you know where you may need mobility help, research and engage third-party MMS providers to see how they can help. Compare their technology platforms, their approach to MMS, and their overall value proposition, including their ability to provide savings guarantees. 

If you’d like to consider Tellennium in your TEM vendor comparisons, contact us to schedule a brief demo of our solution.

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