Professionally mobilizing SharePoint, work-drives and legacy content securely in hybrid environments05 Oct 2018
Currently, there is a real hype around PowerApps. If you look at them from the bright side all the promises are kept. Well, there always is a “but” – that is clearly expected. Here, however, we don’t have only one of them, we have a heap.
Let’s start slowly and systematically. Data Security is enterprise critical – mobilizing content, too. That’s why a lot of well-governed organizations do not allow apps to be provisioned on their mobile devices if not via their EMM infrastructures. They additionally want to know and decide which data and documents are published on what device as well as what for. And they want to manage the lifecycle of any mobile app. Having created a mobile app is fine. But what if it isn’t allowed to be rolled-out?
To get mobilized content secured it has to be containerized. EMMs do and manage that safely since years. There are several ways to get this done and things can get even more complicated if an organization has a BYOD environment or, even more so, a mixed fleet with COBO, COPE and BYOD devices. EMMs also controls what content and what documents are mobilized via an app (or several of them). This means the apps must be firstly accepted into the corporate appstore and then secondly provisioned to the device by a dedicated EMM policy. These are the first two buts – and, believe me, they will create at least some headache in case you want to go for PowerApps (and don’t come with AIP – it simply doesn’t help out here). This point gets even worse in case you are forced to use the PowerApp Apps with the EMM’s container framework, because this feature just isn’t there.
There is a big third “but” and it comes alongside with the requirement that workflows should be mobilized seamlessly. Users do not like it if they have to switch between SharePoint App, OneDrive Business App and several PowerApps to get a, say, medium-complex workflow completed whilst on the go. This is even more so, “but” number 4, if the documents in the workflow aren’t only Office documents but files from CAD, Visio, Project or other file format sources which your PowerApp isn’t able to display on your iOS or Android devices (which is what most of us have in their pockets, by the way).
It’ll get at lot weirder easily if there is no network access in your business meeting room or in your service location and you should have that relevant document at hands (you can’t as there is no network – at least you don’t have the latest update since you hit the road several days ago and many relevant things have come up in the meantime – life is a devil sometimes). Now you should have both offline and intelligent upload capabilities to sync up your forms you filled-in and the videos/pictures you made for documentation of your work (damage and service reports etc.).
But even if there were wifi that does not mean that the internet bandwidth behind it is broad enough to give you a performant always-on-connection with acceptable speed to do your job. In case you don’t have wifi and have to use a slim OTA connection like Edge you could be waiting until Armageddon to finally achieve a loaded work environment on your mobile device. Which you can’t employ usefully afterwards because it takes decades to the objects stored and loaded you need to complete your tasks.
In short: Power in a word doesn’t always mean “powerful” in critical circumstances.
This isn’t the last “but” – there are two more (at least, as there are many more, this text, however, is getting too long if we address all of them). The first has to do with the reality of hybrid infrastructures and workflows using data from both cloud and on-premise stores. PowerApps, OneDrive Business App at least need a full-blown cloud-based set-up of your corporate IT. Do you really have that? Second: If working on a document on the go – would you send an Office document which your counterpart could change or better a PDF one? Your choice should be a no-brainer. What if you also need legacy data in your workflow stored in 3rd place? Well well …
We could continue and talk about mobile printing, the advantage of rapid annotation over changing big Office documents with a mobile Office App you possibly don’t have installed as not allowed by your EMM profile, we could discuss audit trails etc. – the story indeed wouldn’t end. To cut a long rumbling short: Hypes at first are hypes. If you start looking into them in detail mostly you find that things are not that easy and not that nicely computed within minutes. Taking mobile working really serious requires a professional approach with a tool developed by mobile experts who did set-up and run mobile infrastructures since 2002 (and still do on a day-to-day basis).
SYSTAGfiles is such a tool. And it works a bit like PowerApp Apps with the difference that it wasn’t built for the playground but for real life. Which means it resolves your issues and does not create new ones, it removes hurdles and hindrances instead of erecting additional ones. It does its job in the way expected: With speedy performance, optimized for mobile use, securely handling data at rest and in transit, with an easy-to-use interface and quickly individualized and updated with the built-in GUI-Maker capacity that even generates a quite kinky user interface if you like to have one.
SYSTAGfiles is: Get documents and content securely onto tablets and smartphones to support their mobile workforce and have that content protected in a containerized environment on the mobile device – with the data in transit path via the internet completely secured. SYSTAGfiles secured with SecureSystems by SyncDog simply gives you both.
Designed to fulfill Corporate Governance requirements comes along with being compliant with GDPR, SOC/SOX, ISO27001, FIPs, HIIPA and more. The financial sector – and all other regulated industries, too – additionally needs a granularly logged audit-trail of document use. Cloudification leads to hybrid environments including data on premise, in the cloud, in SharePoint and SharePoint365, on classical intranet file-shares and OneDrive Business, combined with legacy data through webservices via use-case driven apps.
Both SecureSystems by SyncDog as well as SYSTAGfiles are perfectly aligned with MobileIron’s EMM suite and Microsoft’s Intune EMM. It makes sense to get the best tools you can.