By Midmarket CIO Journal Staff
“When an IT department can pass out smoke alarms and set up sprinkler systems instead of just fight fires, it’s more efficient, costs less, and has more happy and productive workers.”
When Endre J. Walls came on board at Philadelphia-based Resources for Human Development, IT functioned more as a support organization than a strategic function for the company’s success and progress.
RHD, a non-profit social service provider with more than 160 programs across 14 states, provides everything from job training for the homeless to crisis intervention and residential services for mentally ill and developmentally challenged.
Many employees and partners, including doctors, lawyers, healthcare technicians and administrative staff, are mobile workers with access to sensitive medical and personal information and need to comply with HIPPA regulations.
“We knew that a BYOD strategy would save money – the ROI is obvious,” said Walls, RHD’s Chief Technology Officer. “Our issue was finding a smart way to implement it in our particularly regulated environment, in a secure way that was the least obtrusive and did not require infrastructure to stand up.”
The company vetted a number of mobile device management solutions before selecting MaaS360 by Fiberlink. Fiberlink is considered a “Leader” by Gartner Research in their 2012 MDM Magic Quadrant. Fiberlink’s high level of support through the implementation process helped deploy the true SaaS for mobility solution rapidly for RHD requiring no additional infrastructure, firewall or network changes.
Prior to deployment, approximately 90 percent of all employees, from executive managers to clerical staff, wished to access their corporate accounts via their personally owned mobile devices, and RHD was traditionally a BlackBerry-only organization for mobile access to corporate accounts.
Val Hetrick, director of Customer Success at Fiberlink, added, “MaaS360 is the perfect solution for organizations where consumerization and BYOD policies require IT to support a multitude of smartphones and tablets. All organizations need the basic MDM features however, quickly see additional value in deploying and securing applications along with corporate documents.
With MaaS360, RHD immediately gained support of iOS and Android devices. Walls’ team now has a single platform for managing, securing and reporting on all its mobile devices. In the future, RHD can implement additional security and productivity features without going through hardware or software upgrades since Fiberlink continuously updates the MaaS360 platform with new features. Recent examples include increased security for applications and corporate documents.
“Most users were not even aware a significant change had even occurred once we let them know we were implementing the software,” Walls added. “We had already begun the ‘exodus’ from BlackBerries to smartphone devices due to a mix of user demand and cost structure issues.”
His department’s response was just one step in that evolution from simply a support team to an enablement division that supported both the company’s operations as well as its forward-looking goals.
“We have been seeing increases in our budgets as the technologies we produce have had a truly positive impact on the communities we serve by making our employees more productive, collaborative and innovative.”
Walls added that he’s always advocated about the importance of leveraging partnerships for IT, both in the cloud and elsewhere, to help drive organizational change in an intelligent and efficient way.
“I feel our partnership with organizations like Fiberlink has definitely helped us do something our competitors and other companies struggle with – and that’s keep up with technology in a way that allows us to be proactive instead of reactive. When an IT department can pass out smoke alarms and set up sprinkler systems instead of just fight fires, it’s more efficient, costs less and has more happy and productive workers.”