Nehring Technology, based in Stephenville, Texas, has been providing business technology solutions since 2006 and became a managed service provider (MSP) in 2010. The company’s mission is focused on enhancing and improving business technology through proactive maintenance and support. This is part five of a six-part series investigating how MSPs can successfully integrate mobile device management into their service offerings.
In our last installment, Nehring Technology continued to educate their clients on the importance of mobile device management (MDM) and were focusing their efforts on more product testing and marketing initiatives. Since then, Justin Nehring (pictured), President of Nehring Technology, has started to see an uptick in MDM awareness, as well as common misconceptions about this up-and-coming solution.
MDM Awareness is Growing
While Nehring has spent the past few months trying to create MDM awareness within his own client base, he has found that MDM is becoming more mainstream in the business world. The last place Nehring expected to hear an MDM success story was at his wife’s company holiday party. Nehring spoke with someone who had lost his mobile device and had to utilize the geo-locater feature of their MDM solution to find the device. Many companies are starting to understand the need for MDM. “The idea of integrating MDM into businesses is hitting critical mass. It’s going to be important for all IT service companies to provide MDM if they want to be competitive,” said Nehring.
Marketing is Key
For Nehring Technologies, implementing MDM is based on trial and error. One aspect that has helped generate interest is their pointed marketing efforts. Nehring says he has had good results with mailers. “We don’t get huge turnouts with mailers, but they do generate a few calls per hundred mailings – enough to start the conversation and begin the sales process,” he said. Nehring also believes that every market is different and that it is important to find out what works in your particular market.
The Battle Against Misconceptions
For the past few months, Nehring has been in talks with a local auto dealership who had expressed a possible need for an MDM solution. Nehring initially thought they would be working with the sales department, but quickly realized their main efforts would be within the service department.
For the initial push, Nehring said the service department couldn’t decide if they were going go the PC Plus route where they would replace the PCs and also purchase tablets to extend the usability of the PCs, or purchase tablets to replace the PCs altogether. The service department had hoped to utilize a line-of-business application from their software vendor, as they assumed the application would function the same way the PC software does. However, after seeing a demo of the application, they realized the app had only a fraction of the software capabilities built-in. Once they learned that they still needed their PCs to do a majority of the work, they decided to go the full PC route, completely bypassing the mobile device direction. “There is a misconception that you can replace a PC with a tablet, but a tablet is more of the PC Plus model. When you get down creating content, more than likely, you’re going to be pushed to a PC,” said Nehring. The dealership is now evaluating the use of tablets within the sales department.
What’s Next for 2013?
For 2013, Nehring is focused on getting a top-tier managed services package together that will include their MDM offering. He’s looking to expand beyond their local market and knows that competition is only going to get stronger as more and more of the smaller shops move in the same direction. “We want to make sure we have a complete offering to go toe-to-toe with any MSP out there,” said Nehring. “MDM will help us improve our product offerings and help us compete – you can’t ignore MDM like some folks are,” he added.
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