Businesses are starting to come to terms with the gains that they can realize by adopting mobile solutions. There is actually talk of “mobile-first” initiatives in which business processes will be built around the spread of mobile applications, all leveraging centrally stored data that can be accessed easily from mobile devices.

Better yet, because of the growing legitimacy of the bring-your-own-device (BYOD) movement, businesses can do so without making costly, upfront investments in mobile hardware. In fact, 29.4% of companies have dropped their BlackBerry support, opting instead to trust in the iOS and Android devices of their employees.

In order to realize the possibilities of mobile technology in enterprise, however, it is necessary to confront two important issues: the sudden growth of wireless traffic on networks, and the difficulty of protecting company data on private devices. Fortunately, the field of mobile device management (MDM) helps us address both concerns.

MDM allows for remote monitoring of devices that are designated for business purposes, helping to make sure that they are healthy, secure, and operating in environments in which business data does not mix with personal data. It is an effective tradeoff between having to invest in dedicated, tightly-locked mobile hardware, and letting employees use personal devices for business with no supervision whatsoever.

Furthermore, it has the added advantage of helping to deal with the explosion of mobile traffic that has suddenly hit business wide area networks (WAN). Mobility has pushed the boundaries of wireless capacity in the enterprise environment, in some cases causing performance bottlenecks. However, many companies integrate their wireless LANs (WLAN) with their MDM solution, using management of network access controls to optimize mobile traffic and maintain smoother operations.

As mobile technology gains an ever greater presence in enterprise, we will likely see more and more innovative solutions that incorporate MDM.