Cork City Council operates over 300 smart devices from smartphones to tablets, using a range of operating systems from IoS (Apple) to Android and Windows. The devices are loaned to City Council staff for business purposes in the interest of the Cork public.
“Today’s smart devices are powerful productivity tools but we had three major business challenges in managing this,” observes Bryan Humphreys, IT Administrator, Cork City Council.
“Firstly, if a device was lost or stolen there were major security risks. These days smartphones and tablets can contain as much data as a traditional laptop PC.
“Secondly, it was almost impossible and certainly time consuming to manage and control each device. Staff might download and use personal apps that did not relate to the work of the Council. At the same time, they had the ability to remove apps that were relevant to Council business.
“Thirdly, when a device came back in, it had to be checked and reconfigured which was horrendously time consuming for the IT Department. There were similar cost and time issues if we wanted to roll out new or updated apps or systems.”
The decision was taken to go out to tender to secure a Mobile Device Management (MDM) solution.
Following a detailed review of MDM options in the market, Cork City Council selected Three.
“We selected them because of their long experience with public sector networks as well as the quality of their solution,” comments Bryan Humphreys, IT Administrator, Cork City Council.
“They did not offer an off the shelf package. They listened carefully to what we needed, why we needed it and who would use it. They tailored the solution to our particular needs using Government and Public Sector network best practice.”
"Three's MDM solution helps public and private sector organisations monitor, control and administer all devices across multiple operating systems and providers,” comments Eoin MacManus, Business Director, Three.
“Cork City Council required an integrated approach that allowed their staff to be fully productive, while addressing IT’s security and management concerns,” points out Three Solutions Architect, Padraic Murphy. “These days it is vital that IT can secure and manage mobile devices, apps and data from one centralised point, and set app and data policies based on device ownership, status or location.”
Three recommended Citrix XenMobile as part of the solution. This manages and secures apps, data, and devices combined with business class productivity apps.
“Users have single click access to their entire mobile, SaaS and Windows apps from a unified corporate app store, including seamlessly integrated email, browser, data sharing and support apps,” commented Three’s Account Manager at Cork City Council, Rosie Mulhern.
IT gains control over mobile devices with full configuration, security, provisioning and support capabilities. Flexible deployment options give IT the choice to manage XenMobile in the cloud or on premise.
“A great weight and concern has been lifted off our shoulders as a result of the Three MDM installation,” comments Bryan Humphreys. “If a device is lost or stolen we have the security of being able to remotely and instantly wipe the data and disable it. This ensures we meet the latest regulatory, data compliance and security regulations.”
In addition, the City Council now has full control over what apps are installed on each device.
“If we want to install a new app or update an existing Council app we can now manage that centrally without having to go through all the time, hassle and expense of calling in and configuring each device,” says Humphreys.
Profiles are applied to the smartphone or tablet centrally, depending on the level of the staff member. Administrative staff, for example, may have different levels of access to field staff or senior management.
“The MDM system is very easy to use and has freed up a lot of IT time to focus on core business critical issues,” adds Bryan Humphreys. “This is aided by the excellent local support provided by Three.”
He concludes, “The installation of the Three MDM solution has not only reduced the cost, hassle and time of managing our device fleet but boosted our data security and peace of mind.”