IT Management

Top 6 MDM Software for Small Businesses

By | 10 min read | Published

Small businesses have been trailblazers in using bring-your-own-device (BYOD) technology before it actually became popular. With less IT equipment budget and a couple of IT admins, small businesses were forced to use their own smartphones, laptops, and computers at work.

However, at the same time, security and managing BYOD access to their network and resources were major concerns for them. Here comes the mobile device management (MDM) solution as a rescue for small businesses.

Mobile device management (MDM) software helps businesses manage and enhance the security of mobile devices, including laptops, smartphones, tablets, and TV. This type of software allows organizations to sync mobile devices and provide greater efficiency for a mobile workforce.

These solutions ensure that each device is configured based on your company’s policies and standards. You can also update the devices, software, and applications centrally in a scalable manner. You can also diagnose, troubleshoot, and secure the connected devices across the network remotely.

To help you make the right software choice, we’ve listed the top six MDM software based on two parameters: user ratings and popularity. Each parameter is weighted and scaled to a value between 1 and 50.

User ratings: This parameter considers the overall user ratings of products based on reviews written in the last 24 months. Users rate products on a scale of 1 (lowest) to 5 (highest).

Popularity: This parameter considers the average monthly search volume for a standardized set of keywords for each product, as derived by a proprietary search methodology, as well as the position of the vendor’s domain on the search engine results page (SERP) for each keyword. It’s a measure of user interest and relevance used as a proxy for popularity.

Note: Products are listed in descending order of their total scores—i.e., summation of user ratings and popularity scores. If two or more products have the same score, they are listed alphabetically. (Read how we selected these products.)

1. Cisco Meraki

  • User rating: 49/50
  • Popularity score: 50/50

Cisco Meraki is a cloud-based solution for endpoint, network, and app security. The software helps you dynamically adjust access and impose network security policy as per your device compliance. You can also automatically bring in configurations from security applications and deploy changes to a number of devices within a few clicks.

With this solution, you can secure each endpoint with flexible device categorization, intelligent auto-deployment of configurations, and auto-mapping of identity to devices.

Cisco Meraki has a mobile app for Android and iOS devices. You’ll get support from their engineers, who use real-time web-based tools to securely and quickly diagnose and troubleshoot your network.

*Analysis accurate as of May 10, 2022
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Key Features:

  • Network security
  • Endpoint management
  • Applications control access
  • Remote remediation
  • Network monitoring
  • Data Import/Export
Trial/Free Version:
Free Trial
Free Version
Starting price:

Contact vendor

Device Compatibility:

Screenshot:

<p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Traffic analytics in </span><a href="https://www.capterra.com/p/176649/Meraki-Systems-Manager/"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Cisco Meraki</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;"> (</span><a href="https://www.capterra.com/p/176649/Meraki-Systems-Manager/"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;">)</span></p>

2. Jamf Pro

  • User rating: 50/50
  • Popularity score: 36/50

Jamf Pro is a cloud-based mobile device management solution for iOS and macOS devices. Besides configuring profiles, it also uses policies and scripts to custom-make devices to offer an excellent user experience. It empowers the ability to update software, install applications from the App Store, and even maintain your own device without raising a help desk ticket.

It also offers security features such as preventing malware threats, enforcing password policies, and data controlling, which secure your Apple devices without any user interaction.

Jamf Pro support options include same-day support, phone support with priority escalation, and access to a full online training catalog.

*Analysis accurate as of May 10, 2022
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Key Features:

  • Malware prevention
  • Password syncing
  • Self-service for Mac
  • Phone support
  • Alerts/Notifications
  • Automatic Scans
Trial/Free Version:
Free Trial
Free Version
Starting price:

$4 per device per month (billed monthly)

Device Compatibility:

Screenshot:

<p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">ETL transformation in </span><a href="https://www.capterra.com/p/164492/Jamf-Pro/"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Jamf Pro</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;"> (</span><a href="https://www.capterra.com/p/164492/Jamf-Pro/"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;">)</span></p>

3. ManageEngine Desktop Central

  • User rating: 47/50
  • Popularity score: 36/50

ManageEngine Desktop Central is a web-based unified endpoint management (UEM) solution for managed service providers (MSPs). It lets you manage your laptops, servers, desktops, smartphones, and tablets from a single location. This helps you automate your routine activities such as installing patches, deploying software, imaging and deploying OS.

You can also control your mobile devices to deploy profiles and policies and configure devices for Wi-Fi, VPN, email accounts, and more. With this solution, you can restrict application installations, camera usage, and remote lock/wipe.

ManageEngine Desktop Central offers a mobile app for Android and iOS. The support options include a knowledge base, user forum, free training, FAQs, phone support, and more.

*Analysis accurate as of May 10, 2022
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Key Features:

  • Patch management
  • IT asset management
  • Power management
  • Remote desktop sharing
  • User administration
  • Encryption
Trial/Free Version:
Free Trial
Free Version
Starting price:

$795 for 50 computers (billed annually)

Device Compatibility:

Screenshot:

<p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Patch management in </span><a href="https://www.capterra.com/p/170018/ManageEngine-Desktop-Central/"><span style="font-weight: 400;">ManageEngine Desktop Central</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;"> (</span><a href="https://www.capterra.com/p/170018/ManageEngine-Desktop-Central/"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;">)</span></p>

4. ConnectWise Automate

  • User rating: 46/50
  • Popularity score: 33/50

ConnectWise Automate is a cloud-based remote monitoring and management software that dynamically manages, monitors, and supports client networks. It helps you detect and track the availability of all the devices linked to your network so as to safeguard the authorized devices and stop others from instigating any potential cyberattacks.

This solution keeps all your connected devices safe, optimized, and secure while configuring, testing, installing Windows, and third-party software updates. In fact, you can also monitor, identify, and resolve any IT issue, including network bottlenecks, application performance issues, and security threats.

ConnectWise Automate offers a mobile application for iOS and Android. Its support options include email support, remote support, 24/7 community forum access, online documentation, and chat support.

*Analysis accurate as of May 10, 2022
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Key Features:

  • Asset discovery
  • Endpoint management
  • Patch management
  • Remote monitoring
  • IT automation
  • Access Controls/Permissions
Trial/Free Version:
Free Trial
Free Version
Upgrade price:

Contact vendor

Device Compatibility:

Screenshot:

<p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Patching in </span><a href="https://www.capterra.com/p/142789/ConnectWise-Automate/"><span style="font-weight: 400;">ConnectWise Automate</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;"> (</span><a href="https://www.capterra.com/p/142789/ConnectWise-Automate/"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;">)</span></p>

5. ManageEngine Mobile Device Manager Plus

  • User rating: 49/50
  • Popularity score: 21/50

ManageEngine Mobile Device Manager Plus is a cloud-based mobile device management tool that manages various mobile platforms via a single interface such as Apple, Android, Windows, and Chrome OS. The platform lets you enroll your devices either by yourself or manually with two-factor authentication.

You can configure and set up multiple policies across devices to secure your corporate resources. You can also define roles based on profiles to grant permissions, particularly for IT admins and users. It also offers an intuitive dashboard that provides an overall summary of useful details.

ManageEngine Mobile Device Manager Plus offers a mobile application for iOS and Android. Its support options include a knowledge base, request support, testimonials, user forum, and phone support.

*Analysis accurate as of May 10, 2022
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Key Features:

  • Device management
  • App management
  • Security management
  • Content management
  • Containerization
  • Data Synchronization
Trial/Free Version:
Free Trial
Free Version
Starting price:

Contact vendor

Device Compatibility:

Screenshot:

<p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Device enrollment in </span><a href="https://www.capterra.com/p/132201/ManageEngine-Mobile-Device-Manager-Plus/"><span style="font-weight: 400;">ManageEngine Mobile Device Manager Plus</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;"> (</span><a href="https://www.capterra.com/p/132201/ManageEngine-Mobile-Device-Manager-Plus/"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;">)</span></p>

6. Hexnode UEM

  • User rating: 49/50
  • Popularity score: 17/50

Hexnode UEM is a cloud-based unified endpoint management solution that manages all the endpoint devices through a centralized location. You can enroll your devices with zero-touch enrollment or self-enrollment. It can also troubleshoot issues remotely as closely as real-team assistance via remote view.

It lets you interact with your enrolled users and broadcast your message to multiple devices connected across the network in real time. With this solution, you can convert your mobile devices into digital kiosks to boost your devices’ productivity.

Hexnode UEM offers a mobile application for iOS and Android. Its support options include email support, a help center, and a knowledge base.

*Analysis accurate as of May 10, 2022
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Key Features:

  • Enrollment
  • Remote actions
  • iOS configurations and actions
  • Android configurations and actions
  • Kiosk mode
  • App management
Trial/Free Version:
Free Trial
Free Version
Starting price:

$1.20 per device per month (billed monthly)

Device Compatibility:

Screenshot:

<p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Open enrollment in </span><a href="https://www.capterra.com/p/146405/Hexnode-MDM/"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Hexnode UEM</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;"> (</span><a href="https://www.capterra.com/p/146405/Hexnode-MDM/"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Source</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;">)</span></p>

What features do mobile device management software tools offer?

The core features of MDM software include:

  • Endpoint management: Track status, assign actions, and control access to systems for devices within the organization.
  • Security management: Allow businesses to protect devices via password protection, two-factor authentication, and more.
  • Software management: Allow businesses to centrally manage the software installation and updates on their devices.

All the products listed in this report include the core features mentioned above.

Besides these core features, MDM software tools also offer certain common features:

  • Automatic user/device recognition
  • Data management
  • Deployment management
  • Inventory management
  • Mobile content management
  • Reporting/analytics
  • Synchronization scheduling
  • Wireless troubleshooting

How to choose the best MDM software for your business?

There are multiple aspects to consider when choosing an MDM software solution for your business. Here are a few important things to consider:

  • Supported operating systems: Check if the MDM system you’re planning to buy supports all your organization’s devices and operating systems. There are solutions in the market that only support a particular operating system; however, others allow managing various operating systems (OSs). It’s beneficial to have a solution that supports multiple OSs so that you can manage all the devices with a single solution, and users can select the device they want to use more easily.
  • Security: While choosing an MDM solution, it’s important to consider its security implications, including the sensitivity of stored content and containment capabilities. The software should ensure appropriate usage restrictions such as malware blocking, malicious bots, and unauthorized logins at any time of security breach.
  • Ease of use: Look for a solution that is easy to implement and run for your IT department. The solution should allow you to enroll new devices easily, the administrative dashboard should be simple and clean, and device control should be easy and intuitive.

Common questions to ask when choosing MDM software

Here are a few important questions you should ask the vendor before investing in MDM software:

What kind of customization does the MDM solution offer?

When considering an MDM solution, it’s important to consider a solution that can be customized as per your business needs and policies. As such, there is no one-size-fits-all solution. Therefore, an ideal MDM solution is one that can be customized to meet an individual company’s requirements as well as restrictions on a day-to-day basis.

How flexible is the MDM solution and its architecture?

Choosing an MDM solution can be challenging with new operating systems and device features entering the market. Therefore, it is quite important to look for a solution that is adaptable, flexible, and scalable with your growing business needs. Selecting a solution that is not flexible can hinder your future business requirements.

Does the MDM solution integrate with the existing systems?

Look for a solution that can integrate with the existing systems being utilized within your company. An ideal solution can integrate with your company’s existing IT infrastructure.

How did we choose these products? We didn’t—you did

To find your ideal software match, you need information you can trust—so you can save time, stay on budget, and focus more energy on growing your business. It’s why we vet and verify all our user reviews and recommend only the tools endorsed by people such as you.

In other words, our product recommendations are never bought or sold, or based on the opinion of a single individual—they’re chosen by your peers, reflecting the views and experiences of our independent base of software reviewers.


At Capterra, we objectively select and rank products based on a methodology developed by our research team. Some vendors pay us when they receive web traffic, but this does not influence our methodology.

To be considered for this list, products must meet the following criteria:

Product has at least 20 unique product reviews published on Capterra within 24 months of the start of the research process for a given report (May 2022).

  • Product shows evidence of offering MDM functionality as demonstrated by publicly available sources, such as the vendor’s website.
  • Product serves North American users, as demonstrated by product reviews submitted from that region.
  • Product is relevant to software buyers across industries or sectors—in other words, no “niche” solutions that cater exclusively to one specific type of user, as determined by our analysis of user reviews and/or market research.
  • The product achieves a minimum normalized overall user-review rating, after normalizing and weighting review recency (see description under “scoring” section).
  • Product achieves a minimum popularity score.

Scoring:

To arrive at a final rating score per product:

  • Scores are calculated for the ratings dimension based on overall average user ratings.
  • Average product ratings are normalized for recency and volume of reviews.
  • Scores for each dimension are scaled to a maximum of 50.

Products are represented, included, and/or scored solely based on user ratings and popularity data and are independent of any relationship that Capterra has with vendors.


About the Author

Baljeet Kaur

Baljeet Kaur

Baljeet Kaur is a senior market research specialist at Capterra, providing insights about choosing the right software and technology for small and medium businesses. She is inspired by how technology is changing our daily lives, in the smallest and biggest of ways. She enjoys getting creative in the kitchen and trying out different restaurants/cuisines with friends and family.

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