BYOD and the Employee: Choice, Benefits, and IoT Enablement
This is the first blog post in a series providing guidance on rolling out and managing a successful Bring-Your-Own-Device (BYOD) program in your organization.
BYOD and the Employee
BYOD is no longer a trend, but a reality that most organizations are facing when it comes to supporting workers that want anytime, anywhere access to corporate data. IDC predicts that mobile workers will account for 72% of the U.S. workforce by 2020. 85% of IT leaders state that BYOD is already present in their organization, but less than half of of these programs are “well established” according to a study by Cass Information Systems.
Every organization regardless of size or industry, has workers that want to be productive from their mobile device. One of the best ways to support these mobile workers is to provide a flexible BYOD strategy that allows for the use of corporate data on a wide variety of devices. BYOD is about moving past corporate issued devices and giving employees the ability to use their personal mobile devices for work purposes. An essential part of that is supporting employees on whichever device best suits their needs and having a BYOD program in place that addresses any concerns they might have about using their personal device to access corporate data. In the office they can kick off several workflows on a PC or Mac, but in a global economy with distributed teams, work often can’t stop there.
Establishing a flexible BYOD policy means while commuting home on the train, they’re able to collaborate with global team members via their tablet and while at home, when convenient, they’re able to quickly review product orders, approve transactions and pricing requests with just a few clicks on their smartphone. BYOD presents opportunities for increased productivity, greater work-life balance for employees, and innovation across a wide range of processes throughout the enterprise. In order to attain these benefits, IT needs to consistently enable the movement of corporate data across multiple networks and devices.
This will only increase with the impending invasion of IoT devices driving new demand for timely access to data and sensors that will drive agile businesses to react to changing customer and environmental demands. The mobile device will be the primary window for users to consume IoT data and Gartner predicts that by 2018, 25% of new mobile apps will talk to IoT devices. The fastest way for workers to react to changes in their business environments that are detected and reported by IoT is through a mobile app. BYOD programs that allow employees to choose the device that they want to carry with them, reduce the time that it takes for employees to receive such notifications and take action.
Benefits from rolling out a BYOD program include:
- BYOD enables workers to access corporate data any time, from anywhere, allowing corporate workflows to follow them on any device.
- Empowering employees to choose their device makes it more likely they will continue to work and collaborate with distributed teams outside of normal business hours.
- Flexible access to corporate data can improve your company’s ability to react quickly to customer needs and issues that arise.
With flexible access to corporate data comes responsibility. In parallel with rolling out a BYOD program, IT leaders must understand the risks and requirements for supporting access to corporate data on personal devices. BYOD presents some thorny questions for IT managers:
- How does the enterprise securely manage data on devices it doesn’t own?
- What are the privacy implications to adding an employee’s personal device to a corporate network?
- Is there a requirement to track and reimburse employees for accessing corporate data on personal devices?
In our next post, we will address these questions to provide guidance on how to roll out a BYOD program with effective policies that protect the enterprise while supporting users inside and outside an organization. For now, we hope we’ve help make the case for an IT managed BYOD program in your organization. For a free assessment of your current and future mobile strategy, contact us here.