5 Hidden Costs of MDM

Author: Jimmy Chang

Publish on: Feb 19, 2015 6:00:00 AM


It's natural to focus on the cost of software licenses when considering a solution.  For some solutions, the cost of the license is the total cost of ownership (TCO).  However, the cost of the license is only a fraction of the TCO for Mobile Device Management (MDM). Here are 5 CapEx and OpEx costs that you should factor into your decision to purchase MDM:



5. Proprietary appliances in the datacenter = additional IT resources to install, configure, patch, and manage

MDM requires one or more proprietary appliances in your datacenter to handle MDM traffic.  These devices can be a physical appliance or a virtual server and cost $2,000-$5000 including any required VMWare hypervisor and Windows Server licenses. However, the $2-5K doesn’t include the IT manpower needed to install the devices and configure the network to route traffic between the MDM devices and your existing apps and data.

 4. Up to an additional $9500 for training and deployment services

How hard is MDM to deploy?  Check the MDM vendor’s price sheet.  Expect to see training costs up to $1500 to learn how to manage the proprietary devices and deployment consultancy fees that can add up to $8K or higher.

 3. Want to deliver access to internal content repositories to users?  Prepare to manage yet another content repository.

Connecting MDM users to internal content repositories, such as a Windows File Share, is not as simple as configuring a directory path or IP address.  MDM commonly requires the use of a separate MDM document repository product. IT then has to manage which internal files are synced to the MDM document repository as well as backing up the files in the additional repository.

Also, MDM document repository products often have a max storage limit. The storage size may be a quota set per customer deployment or a limitation in the proprietary device. So if you have a lot of data to share, that will incur higher costs for the additional storage from the MDM vendor. 

2. Low BYOD adoption

Today, 80% of devices used in the enterprise are user owned.  Those users worry about privacy.  Additionally, MDM can impact the user experience.  Its not surprising then, that privacy and MDM are often barriers to BYOD adoption. This results in lower end user consumption of MDM as well as increased IT expense for the surplus of unused MDM licenses. 

1. Increase in support tickets to troubleshoot devices managed by MDM

MDM changes the operational behavior of a device as it enforces IT policies and impacts the user experience.  Impacted users are likely to open support tickets when:

  • Their mobile device features (camera, GPS) are locked down and no longer work.
  • Personal apps (installation and use) stop working due to MDM security policies.
  • Complex MDM login procedures prevent successful access.
  • Known workflows become so altered by MDM policy that users struggle with tasks previously performed with ease on their mobile devices. (i.e. copy/paste and add an attachment to an email)

Consider your average cost to close a support ticket. How many support tickets will it take to exceed the cost of the MDM licenses?

It quickly becomes clear that before purchasing MDM, one must carefully examine these items, as the additional costs can very often balloon the total cost of ownership for MDM.

Want to learn more about TCO? Not all Workspaces are created equal when it comes to the total cost of ownership!

Consider two architectures:

1. Traditional on-premises architectures are complex, requiring 9-18 months to go live. This complexity results in higher TCO.  

2. 100% Cloud architecture = instant on, instant scale, instant updates, go live in 60 minutes.

Schedule a 15 minute demo to see today's Workspot in action. We're the leader in cloud desktops, and we can have you up and running on Microsoft Azure in as little as one day!


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