Why Mobileiron stands out in MDM, according to Gartner

 Note May 27, 2015
This article was written three years ago. Recently the stock dropped around 50% from the peak. Here is a quote from Benzinga
"The March quarter miss seems to make clear that the company has less channel visibility and control than thought. The lack of visibility into how deals are progressing, as well as how those deals will be constructed (e.g. perpetual, subscription) seems to have contributed to the quarterly shortfall. Additionally, MOBL does not provide any KPI metrics (e.g. subscribers, users, average pricing or monthly ARPU metrics) that would allow investors to see progress developing long-term subscriber value," the analysts stated.
 One potential positive outcome may be that the Board and VC investors may be more willing to consider a potential sale of the company at 3-4x revenue," the analysts added.
The revenue growth estimates for 1Q and 2015 have been reduced from 34 percent to 22 percent and 34 percent to 21 percent, respectively.

See also the related article Founders, Super-Founders and other companies

The news above supersede the optimistic tone in the article below, based on hopes that did not materialized.



MDM is Mobile Device Management Software

Mobileiron stands out because its' strategy is not designed to make the BYOD employee - who brings its' own device at work - to feel micro-managed. He wants to be as happy at work as he is at home A happy employee is productive and a free spirit

The Gartner Magic Quadrant for MDM lists the companies based on "Strengths" and  "Cautions"  bullets. There is a concern with BYOD user satisfaction. Many, if not most of the companies on the Gartner  list are traditional wireless management software producers. They care about cost.

But it is not how much it costs. It is how much more money I make. As I repeated so many times on this blog, people thrive via profits, not by cutting costs. Yet it seems so much easier to allocate costs per employee, rather then profit per employee.

Take for example Zenprise, also a MDM leader - quoting from Gartner paper:
Zenprise, based in Redwood City, California, was founded in 2003. It is a small company focused solely on MDM. It has a full feature set for life cycle management, including cost control through usage monitoring.
The emphasis is mine. The idea that some Orwellian invisible enterprise monitors my costs,  defeats the purpose of having freedom to create and be productive. Maybe the cost monitoring, like Mobileiron, is just made the for the  users to be aware.There is only an inch distance from making people aware, to making people feel under pressure.

Referring to Mobileiron, Gartner first strength is worded like this:
MobileIron has great visibility and adoption in the MDM market in multiple regions. MobileIron owns high levels of mind share in the MDM market, and appears frequently on shortlists.
Figure 1.Magic Quadrant for Mobile Device Management Software
Gartner Mobile Devices Management Software

What is the reason for this great adoption, is clear in the White Paper on Strategy,
  • Sustainability
     
    User experience is the litmus test for policy sustainability. If it breaks, so does the program
  • Device Choice
    A BYOD program that doesn’t support current and intended purchases will have limited appeal. The program must be dynamic, as new devices appear every year
  • Trust
    The trust level for personal devices may be different than for corporate devices. Privacy policies will vary, as will user expectations. For example, users may accept not being able to use social networking apps on corporate devices, but that type of policy is unacceptable for personal devices.
  • Liability
    “Does moving device ownership from company to employee increase or decrease corporate liability?”. Some companies say No. Other companies say Yes, but whatever variation in liability  should not threaten or discourage the BOYD user.
  • User Experience and Privacy
    The core tenet of successful BYOD deployments is preservation of user experience.
    These programs will not be sustainable if user experience is compromised when employees start using their personal devices for corporate email and apps.
  • Economics
    The hidden economics of BYOD center on increasing productivity, managing the cost of complexity, and realizing the value of more responsible employee usage.
The concern for the BYOD user is remarkable, but in my humble opinion, the economics must go beyond costs, and perhaps go in terms of profits. We can view the BOYD company users as pay-per-use (the payments are from company side) service delivery. Can one express the productivity in terms of profits (not costs)?  
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