Q&A with Jason Hill – Implementing a BYOD policy

April 5, 2014
Q&A with Jason Hill – Implementing a BYOD policy

Managing an IT policy based around employees using their own devices is one of the biggest challenges facing IT decision makers at the moment. Our recent Mobile Rebels research has helped highlight the issue and has shown IT decision makers what they can do to tackle the BYOD challenge. We caught up with Jason Hill, Head of EMEA EUC Advisory Services at VMware for some of his tips on working with your Mobile Rebels and implementing an effective BYOD policy.

Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) has long since been making major inroads into businesses across the globe, and there has been a lot of discussion regarding the benefits of BYOD. One of the biggest discussions is the impact that it has on the wider business outside of the IT department.

Bringing your own device to work is certainly more convenient for the user, but poorly thought through BYOD policies can cause a massive headache for the IT team who work tirelessly to sync programs and manage countless different models of mobile phones, tablets and laptops.

For example, if IT allows workers to bring their own laptops to work, what consideration would they need to give to the support they require? If a person were to sign a EULA (End User License Agreement) explicitly dictating that they should have procured a hardware maintenance agreement alongside their laptop, where does that leave them? Workers would also need to know if they are able to call the service desk for support if a laptop were to malfunction, and whether or not the team would be able to recognise them as a BYOD user. Should IT be available to help no matter what the situation? If this is the case, then organisations will need to work out how they will be able to set themselves up for those situations.

For IT literate users, changing to embrace modern technology such as unified communications, enterprise workspace and social media tools can be easy; they are probably already used to using the technology at home, or they are intuitive enough to be able to work out their own solution. But for some, this will be more of a challenge. For those who find new technologies more taxing than others, training would need to be made available in order for them to fully understand what was being asked, something that can put pressure on an already strained IT department.

These changes are decentralising IT, but they cannot be considered in isolation. Some would argue that the missing piece of the puzzle here is covered by Organisational Change Management (OCM). This doesn’t have to mean a prolonged engagement with expensive management consultants; it could simply be identifying the correct work streams and people that need to work alongside the technologists.

Here are a few suggestions:

1. Consider the users that could be leveraging the new technology or service, and consult with them in order to understand what’s acceptable to them from a training and support perspective.

2. Ensure that the end users are appropriately represented throughout the programme.

3. If you require an EULA, ensure that it’s well communicated – perhaps make it mandatory training before signature.

4. How will the support organisation need to change to provide appropriate services to the end users?

If you want to find out more about tackling Mobile Rebels in your business, take a closer look at our VMware Horizon solution. Also, why not find out how much of a Mobile Rebel you are by using our Mobile Rebels calculator.  

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