It can’t be denied anymore: wearables have entered the workplace-use scenario with more and more employees using them for professional purposes. Many experts argue that wearables can help support businesses by improving employee communication and enhancing productivity. They are expected to make a substantial impact in industries like healthcare, hospitality, construction, real estate, transportation and mining.
The Rise of Wearables
As per industry reports, wearable technology is expected to grow tremendously in the near future. Research gurus like Gartner and McKinsey predict numbers for wearables to reach almost $2 trillion by 2020 and $33 trillion by 2025 respectively. Of course, more wearables in the business market would also mean more security risk. An adoption drive for wearables into business operations should be backed by an equally strong enterprise mobility management (EMM) solution. (For different mobile management strategies, see Mobile Device Management vs. Mobile Application Management: The Big Fight Continues.)
Some of the common areas of concern for most businesses in regard to adopting wearables in a professional environment are related to security and privacy issues. The growing influx of wearables in workplaces would automatically translate into a need for solutions to help assimilate wearables in industry workflows. Though employee productivity and efficiency is one of its strong points, the real challenge is to balance the gains against risks such as data leakage, loss of device and unsafe practices. With IoT technology now joining the game, securing all the data being passed around has become very daunting.
Though wearable technology has progressed by leaps and bounds in recent years, the EMM market is still in its infancy when it comes to tracking and managing wearable devices. By incorporating a comprehensive EMM solution, an organization will be empowered to secure and manage wearables. Though theoretically, an EMM solution for mobile devices should also work with wearables, technically speaking the process would require some thoughtful actions.
Wearable sensors can be extremely beneficial in several industries, to receive, collect and transmit data automatically. Let’s take a look at why enterprises must start thinking about incorporating wearables into their EMM strategies:
- Features like accelerometers and heart rate monitors can collect real-time info on patients and pass that data on to doctors.
- Wearable technology can also help hospital staff access patients' medication records by scanning QR codes or NFC tags on a patient's ID.
- Gyro sensors, altimeters, ambient light, barometers, etc. can be useful for workers in the construction industry to pass on critical info to crew members.
- Tracking driver fatigue through a smartwatch can help prevent accidents in the logistics industry.
- Wearables in the hospitality industry can help staff greet customers by name to provide a more personalized service.
- Some banks are experimenting with wearables as a means to make payment for commodities easier for customers.
Wearables in Enterprise Mobility
There are several cases of contention being made against wearables due to security and privacy issues. These may become intensified in enterprises where access to classified information may become easier due to these devices. Thus, for a company to undertake deployment of wearables in the company-owned or bring-your-own-device (BYOD) scenario, the onus of risk management falls on the security policy of the company. This is where an EMM solution would prove its importance with features like containerization and remote wiping playing key roles in mitigating security gaps. (To learn more about BYOD security, see The 3 Key Components of BYOD Security.)
42Gears Offers EMM Solution for Securing Wearables
With wearables slowly making their way into the consumer market, it might not be long before we start seeing their large-scale deployment in the workplace. An increase in demand and manufacture of numerous end-to-end wearable products could quickly result in the devices flooding the market. But before companies contemplate mass adoption of the devices, they’ll have to equip themselves with the right EMM security to manage the risks better.
42Gears is one of the leading EMM solution providers and is ready to take on the wearable challenge. Its products SureMDM and SureLock for Android wearables have been successfully implemented by global customers to secure their deployed wearables.
42Gears has been able to invade the wearables industry through a continuous strive to embrace new technology. The aim of the company has always been to connect enterprises with software solutions that improve their productivity. With an increasing number of customers demanding solutions for integrating wearables into their workflows, 42Gears made it their priority to develop workable EMM models based on wearables that would benefit enterprises from different industries. Going forward, it is expected to take aim at several other industries, with special interest in the healthcare and BYOD territories.