To BYOD or Not to BYOD?

On a day-to-day basis I’m asked ‘How and why should I adopt “bring your own device” BYOD?’ To help you access your need for BYOD, here’s a guide to the pros and the cons of BYOD.

Statistics indicate a significant shift towards mobile liberation, with Gartner predicting by 2017 that 50% of workplaces will need BYOD in place…

…however…

…is BYOD right for you?

The Pros

1.) BYOD makes indisputable economic sense.

Think about it from an economic perspective. Each employee might spend $1,000 per year for technology. If a company employs 500 people, that’s $500K.

For a company of any size, saving money with BYOD is a no brainer!

2.) BYOD allows you to get better value from your employees.

BYOD increases discretionary effort – the effort an employee puts in above and beyond the bare minimum to do their job.

According to CISCO, BYOD employees are gaining an average of 37 minutes of productive time per week.

BYOD makes more willing employees.

3.) Your employees will thank you.

According to the Financial Times BYOD is good for morale. Empowering people to manage their own work practices strengthens the respect they have for their employer.

Donald McLaughlin from Cisco says:

BYOD is particularly appealing to younger employees. For them, the flexibility of being able to bring your own device to work is often more important than the size of their salary.

The flexibility of BYOD makes for readier learners and a satisfied workforce.

4.) BYOD will happen with or without you!

According to Jos Creese “There’s a certain whiff of inevitability about Bring Your Own Device, as there was with PCs in the early 1980s. You don’t resist inevitable IT trends”.

Roger Bjork, director at Dell says: Those slow to support BYOD or constrained by a device-centric approach may deal with greater challenges, including the risk of being left behind from a competitive standpoint.

Ignoring the BYOD trend is not the solution – the question now is how to manage it effectively.

The Cons

1.) BYOD will require more support to troubleshoot for all devices

At one time, this may have been true.

The widespread adoption of HTML5 based apps (such as, ahem…Elucidat) mean this is no longer a problem.

HTML5 apps use standard web technologies such as HTML and JavaScript which are recognised by all devices.

This video should clear up your concerns:

2.) It can be risky to ask staff to decide what tools to use themselves:

For employees the best thing about BYOD is going out and buying a shiny new (company subsidised) laptop to show off (I know I did!).

Sometimes however, allowing your staff to make their own decisions on what kit to use isn’t the best option – if it doesn’t perform then who is responsible?

This situation is easily avoidable by enforcing standards.

3.) Security and data control

According to IBM: 71 percent of CEOs and IT managers say that security is their most significant mobile enterprise challenge.

Safety can be ensured in two ways:

1.Employing a data policy

2.Using the right tools

It is important to employ a BYOD data policy. Click here for some handy policy templates.

To ensure the security of your BYOD workforce use Cloud technology.

According to web protection experts Sophos: ‘the cloud is the perfect fit for today’s businesses. Cloud security solutions are transparent for users and simple for administrators. They protect data and endpoints by focusing on individual users, with policies that follow them across systems—wherever they go.’

With Cloud based applications SSL use is common, passwords and credit card details are rarely kept and since data is stored remotely, access can easily be revoked.

Overall, there is an abundance of compelling reasons why BYOD is ideal for the modern workplace. I know from first-hand experience that my current BYOD enabled position is the most productive, yet stress free environment I have worked in (you can hold me to that!).

If you’d like to boost productivity by authoring ‘BYOD ready’ elearning, Contact us – we’d love to help you and your employees.

So what do you think, yay or nay? Let us know in the comments.

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