MDM for Shared Devices: Empowering Agility in Manufacturing

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    If there’s one industry where agility is the decisive competitive factor, it has to be the manufacturing industry. After all, it’s the defining industry for a country’s GDP. Look all around you. Wherever your eyes move, there are modern manufacturing wonders. While, as consumers, we love finished products, from snazzy automobiles to limited-edition watches, plenty of technologies and management are behind the scenes. 

    Shared Devices in Manufacturing
    Shared Devices in Manufacturing

    Manufacturing floors are bustling spaces where it’s all about speed, accuracy and efficiency. Mobile devices of workforces used on manufacturing floors are essential operational elements too. On these floors, the action never stops–shift after shift. This makes a strong case for sysadmins to adopt shared device solutions in manufacturing. And to manage shared device mode, there’s nothing better than a Mobile Device Management (MDM) solution.

    MDM for shared devices that workers use on manufacturing floors allows sysadmins to ensure the agility of processes and operations. This blog will shed some bright light on the agility aspect of sysadmins in the manufacturing industry.

    Challenges without MDM in Manufacturing

    Managing shared devices without MDM software was achievable when manufacturing workstations only had Windows desktops or laptops. It was simple since Windows is user-agnostic. Back in the day, you’d hardly find mobile devices on manufacturing floors. As a matter of fact, there were no industry-grade mobile devices available. Even the workforce lacked the skills or training required to use mobile devices and associated technologies. Now, that manufacturing era is a passé. 

    It’s well and truly the age of mobile devices—tablets, smartphones, and purpose-built devices. Rugged devices are now commonplace across manufacturing floors in the world. More often than not, these devices are shared among two or more users on the floor. Without an MDM solution, sysadmins in charge of managing shared devices in manufacturing are pretty much in murky waters. Here are a few pointers to that:

    • Deploying new shared devices for new users
    • Inconsistency in user switching
    • No visibility on device sign-in/outs
    • Inability to troubleshoot remotely (leading to on-site visit costs and time) 
    • Lack of control over how shared devices are being used
    • Inability to manage or change apps and content when required
    • No clear overview of device vitals
    • Compliance, quality control and data privacy issues

    There’s more to add to the above list, but each one of them, in some way or the other, hampers the agility of device management on manufacturing floors. This is where MDM for shared devices comes in as an aide and confidante to sysadmins. 

    Read our blog on MDM for shared devices in retail

    Benefits of MDM for Shared Devices in Manufacturing

    Using an MDM solution to manage shared devices offers plenty of benefits to manufacturing sysadmins. Most of them cover the primary challenges discussed in the section before. Let’s zero in on the agility perspectives.

    Easy Deployment with Group-based Sharing

    Manufacturing sysadmins can deploy devices and make them available for sharing just with a few clicks on the MDM dashboard. All this while keeping the required profiles and policies separate for each shared device based on the intended purpose and user. 

    For example, in an automobile manufacturing unit, shared devices of floor staff responsible for the assembly line will have different requirements from the paints and coatings department staff. Thus, both sets of shared devices need separate user groups and profiles. Users from one particular group can share devices seamlessly when sysadmins use an MDM solution.

    Deploying new devices to staff is also a breezy affair once it’s enrolled in the MDM dashboard and the required profile is applied.  Retiring dysfunctional devices is simply a click away as well.

    Read our blog on MDM for shared devices in healthcare

    Secure and Quick User Switching

    Just off the MDM scheme of things—a question for you. Why do industrial processes have cyclic redundancy checks for quality control? It’s a straightforward answer—manufacturing units have no room for clumsiness and redundancy. 

    An MDM solution helps sysadmins implement an agile and secure user-switching process for shared devices. One user signs in via two-factor authentication (email and OTP) and signs out based on the shift. The next user follows the process. Sysadmins can set the device session timings accordingly to sign out a user automatically once the clock hits the defined hour. 

    To streamline user switching further, sysadmins can configure notifications with customized messaging to alert a worker nearing the end of a shift. And that’s not all. Every time a new worker signs in, sysadmins can clear data of allowed apps so there’s complete privacy of sessions. A feature that’s critical in manufacturing processes where floor managers enter confidential information in apps. For example, in a chemicals manufacturing plant, it could be the procuring details of a regulated drug or poisonous gas. 

    Application Management

    A manufacturing workforce has no time to waste looking for urgent information. That’s anti-agility. An MDM solution plays a big part here by enabling sysadmins with extensive, real-time app and content management capabilities. The ability to push work apps or content remotely from the dashboard assures the floor staff of information accessibility 24×7. 

    For example, content related to training tutorials on a new machine or tech can be pushed instantly to the intended shared devices. Sysadmins can also update apps on shared devices silently without user intervention. 

    Read our blog on how MDM for shared devices streamlines IT operations

    Tracking, Monitoring and Reporting

    Manufacturing sysadmins must be in total control of shared devices on the floor. An MDM offers just that. It allows complete tracking and monitoring of shared devices and their usage, along with user behavior. Thus, sysadmins are always aware of how these devices are used. 

    Battery levels, device inactivity, data and storage, sign-in and sign-out timings, etc., are all available on the MDM dashboard. Sysadmins can also generate reports regarding the same to optimize shared device management. These reports are essential during audits to analyze the performance and efficiency of manufacturing floor staff.

    Compliance Workflows

    We all know that the manufacturing industry is regulated with plenty of compliance requirements, almost at every step on the floor. The penalties aren’t just monetary or legal but can even result in the shutdown of units. An MDM solution assists sysadmins in creating compliance workflows on the dashboard and applying them accordingly on shared device profiles. 

    For example, a compliance workflow like filling a particular online form through an app or a digital signature can be set for floor staff involved in potentially hazardous manufacturing processes. If there’s any noncompliance, sysadmins can immediately communicate it to the concerned authority. On manufacturing floors, mistakes are very expensive or deadly, and apologies can’t cover those expenses. An MDM ascertains that sysadmins are able to play their part in avoiding mishaps and noncompliance. 

    Scalefusion MDM for Shared Devices in Manufacturing

    We hope this blog has shed some valuable light on the importance of managing shared devices in manufacturing using an MDM solution. With more technologies sweeping into manufacturing floors, the scope and configurations of mobile devices used on the floors will only soar, and thus, the agility bar will keep raising itself.

    Scalefusion MDM is ideal for manufacturing sysadmins seeking agility in their shared device management capabilities. It’s time to schedule a demo and discuss all the possibilities with our team of experts. You can also check out Scalefusion’s shared device solutions with a 14-day free trial.

    Abhinandan Ghosh
    Abhinandan Ghosh
    Abhinandan is a Senior Content Editor at Scalefusion who is an enthusiast of all things tech and loves culinary and musical expeditions. With more than a decade of experience, he believes in delivering consummate, insightful content to readers.

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