Maximizing Operational Excellence in Manufacturing with MDM

    Manufacturing is a dynamic industry that requires businesses to be agile and responsive to changing market conditions. Like many other industries, manufacturing is increasingly reliant on technologies to complete the production process. Along those lines, mobile technologies are quickly becoming a necessity for the manufacturing industry for several reasons.

    For starters, mobile technologies allow floor managers to access real-time information from their fingertips. This allows them to make quick, informed decisions and keep operations up and running. In addition, modern IT systems and solutions, including a wide array of mobile devices, are integral to manufacturing in terms of managing workflows and productivity. 

    MDM for Manufacturing
    Mobile Device Management in Manufacturing

    With the increasing adoption of mobile devices, businesses are looking for ways to leverage device management solutions to improve their operations and stay competitive. Mobile device management (MDM) can be the pivot for manufacturers looking to streamline operations, improve efficiency, and increase productivity.

    Key Issues of Using Mobile Devices in Manufacturing

    Device-side Concerns

    As more technologies get implemented across business functions, manufacturers now face the additional challenge of mobile devices being susceptible to online threats. The threats that mobile devices carry range from insecure mobile apps and limited restrictions regarding accessing corporate data to vulnerabilities of unpatched operating systems.

    Modern manufacturing facilities that are extensively connected via mobile devices are susceptible to malicious activities, which could cause the shutdown of a production facility. Threats through lost or stolen devices also pose a concern. 

    A focus on device management should be the primary concern of any manufacturing facility looking to implement mobile devices in their production facilities.

    The App Rush

    For manufacturers, combining existing operational systems with mobile apps to create workflows keeps their business more agile and portable. Businesses also take advantage of custom-built apps to meet their manufacturing needs in a precise manner. For example, companies can create a custom app to manage materials with barcode scanning and location tracking for current stock levels.

    A broad range of off-the-shelf applications are available for capacity and workflow management, collaboration, cost control, productivity and quality monitoring, and other operational procedures. Although convenient for end-users, this rush and high volume of apps can lead to potential disruptions when not managed and distributed on time to the right device.

    Phishing and Malware Threats 

    Protecting intellectual property and trade secrets is paramount in manufacturing. Automotive manufacturers are building safer cars that can reduce accidents. Pharmaceutical companies invest billions in drug development and must protect information from their proprietary research and clinical trials. In aerospace and defense, the stakes for protecting innovation are not just a matter of competitive advantage but also national security.

    Phishing and malware attacks can exploit device vulnerabilities to steal data or change the configuration of a device. Malware can allow bad actors to gain access to networks, leading to operational bedlam. All of these are not just a threat to IP rights and sensitive corporate information but can cause reputational and financial damage as well.

    MDM Opens New Opportunities for Manufacturing

    MDM offers a modernized approach to managing a wide variety of devices that fit a manufacturing organization’s needs, including;

    Simple Device Provisioning

    The array of mobile devices required in manufacturing operations means that device onboarding, provisioning, updating, and troubleshooting must be efficient and as automated as possible. Device management resolves diagnosing and repairing issues from a single console, simplifying operations and lowering operating expenses.

    Remote IT Support

    Unplanned production downtime is debilitating for manufacturers. Device downtime results in frustrated workers and lost revenue. A key aspect of keeping workers productive is quickly fixing mobile devices and application-related issues, reducing worker and device downtime.

    Fortunately, an MDM solution can make remote support of mobile devices easier than traditional IT support. IT admins can now expedite the support process with remote view and control, forced updates, and restarts. 

    Mobile Device Optimization

    Manufacturers must introduce fixed-purpose devices in the workplace. Scalefusion’s kiosk mode can restrict a mobile device to a limited set of functions that are required based on its current role. 

    For example, goods entering a warehouse need to be scanned throughout assembly and production. IT teams can convert mobile devices into dedicated scanning devices by setting up a kiosk lockdown mode with a single barcode scanner app, which uses the smartphone’s front-facing camera. 

    Application Management

    Managing apps gets trickier in manufacturing as more devices handle different tasks. An MDM solution tackles this by handling custom warehouse apps and third-party ones too.

    Another advantage is silent installation—pushing apps on devices without user interaction. This lets admins set up a library of approved apps (private or company-wide) on the device management console. They can then pre-approve permissions and install these apps on all devices at once.

    Physical Security

    Mobile devices are a significant investment, and companies cannot afford to overlook the physical security of smartphones and tablets. That’s where features like geofencing and location tracking come to the fore. An MDM solution tracks all enrolled devices with location history and pinpoints all the locations that personnel visit with their device. 

    Data Protection

    Giving workers greater access to data and information increases efficiencies, but it can cause leaks or breaches. To prevent such instances, an MDM solution can help manufacturers implement a robust data security policy

    IT admins can perform all necessary controls and manage data stored on devices. They can keep track of devices and apps used by workers and grant (or prohibit) access to company information as needed. MDM platforms also offer a remote wipe capability that allows data to be deleted from lost or stolen devices.

    Rev Up Your Manufacturing Excellence with Scalefusion MDM

    Implementing mobile device management in a manufacturing environment has the potential to transform average operations into excellence. Businesses can establish necessary policies—application, processes, and security—on smartphones and tablets to enhance processes across the manufacturing floor. 

    An MDM solution like Scalefusion supports manufacturing businesses in:

    • Managing a multi-OS device fleet 
    • Providing physical and data protection in the event of device theft or loss
    • Monitoring devices and their reports and analytics to optimize IT operations
    • and a lot more…

    If you are a manufacturing business looking for operational excellence, speak to our experts and book a demo to learn how Scalefusion can help your cause. Start a 14-day free trial today!

    Renuka Shahane
    Renuka Shahane
    Renuka Shahane is an avid reader who loves writing about technology. She is an engineering graduate with 10+ years of experience in content creation, content strategy and PR for web-based startups.

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