CA Bets Expanded Mobility Features Will Help Enterprises Retain Users

By Todd R. Weiss  |  Print this article Print

CA's Peter Griffiths talked with eWEEK at Mobile World Congress to share his company's vision about better mobility tools for enterprise users.

BARCELONA, Spain—As the use of mobile devices has proliferated wildly in the last few years among consumers and business users, it's easy to think that we are today at the pinnacle of the mobile marketplace.

But Peter J.L. Griffiths, head of the enterprise solutions and technology group at CA Technologies, begs to differ.

"We are still at the beginning" of the mobile revolution, Griffiths told eWEEK in an interview here this week at the Mobile World Congress event. "These devices are just at the beginning of their exploitation" as tools and revenue-generation machines for business. And what that means, he added, is that businesses need mobile management systems that will help them optimize, secure and take advantage of all kinds of mobile transactions and connections with their customers around the world.

"The sort of management systems that companies want require the ability to manage these things seamlessly," said Griffiths.

Earlier this week, CA unveiled at Mobile World Congress its new enterprise mobile management suite, which aims to help enterprises give more freedom to mobile workers so they can get their work done while still protecting the critical business data handled by the companies. The new product, CA's Management Cloud for Mobility, includes new "smart containerization" technology that allows enterprises to create policy rules to protect data as required, while at the same time giving employees more flexibility to do their jobs with the mobile devices they want to use for work.

"When I sit down with our customers, the mobile experience for all of them is an enormous priority," said Griffiths. "That experience starts to become brand recognition," which is why it is so important for enterprises to be sure that mobile connections to customers work well all the time and don't let their customers down, he said.

That's where CA's new Management Cloud for Mobility comes in, he said: to help businesses cover every angle of their mobility management efforts with employees, partners and customers. But instead of just helping businesses manage mobile devices alone, the new CA suite also offers other needed enterprise applications, including a Mobile DevOps component to help with mobile application development and deployment, and an Enterprise Internet of Things piece that is designed to assist businesses as they expand into the world of Internet-connected devices in the future.

"There are a lot of companies out there with a point solution for mobile device management [MDM]," said Griffiths, but with the new CA suite businesses can also get many of their related technology needs met from one vendor. At the same time, customers have the flexibility to only buy and use the pieces they require today, he said.

"We're not expecting customers to rip out [what they have today] and replace it all," said Griffiths. "We can embrace what you have. As time goes by, we hope that customers see the compelling aspects of the full suite of connected systems," and they will bring in additional components. "Customers want flexibility and a partner whom they're working with … who is not going to lock them into a stack."

The new CA suite is evidence that the company means business in serving its customers and giving them the tools that they need to continue to grow their operations and serve their customers, said Griffiths.

"For us, this is a central, transformational investment," he said of the development of the new CA suite. "It's going to be a very interesting next five years."

CA has been working hard since early 2013 to refocus its products to better serve its broad customer base after the arrival of a new CEO, Michael Gregoire. CA, which began operations in 1976 as a business software innovator and later emerged as a corporate acquisition machine, has been hard at work driving new innovations in service management.

CA was founded in 1976 by the flamboyant Charles Wang and business partner Russell Artzt. Since then, CA has been one of the most acquisitive software companies in the history of the business. In the late 1980s, CA became the first software company to top $1 billion in sales. In 2005, CA launched a rebranding campaign, referring to itself as CA as opposed to Computer Associates. In 2010, it changed its name once again, to CA Technologies.

Originally published on www.eweek.com.