Why BYOD isn’t going away any time soon

July 4, 2014
Why BYOD isn’t going away any time soon

(and why that’s good news)

BYOD – Bring Your Own Device.

If you’re wondering what the fuss is about, you’ve either already sorted out your strategy, or maybe you’re hoping it’ll all go away. Alternatively, you may be doing the same as many of your peers – circling warily round the issue, trying to keep an open mind as you weigh up your options. Setting BYOD in context may help.

Organisations with traditionally-minded IT departments often struggle with the basic concept of BYOD. They tend to assume that formally embracing it or not is a choice they can make…

It isn’t.

And if you try to put your foot down and resist BYOD, you’ll be in trouble before you can say ‘iPad’. By and large, your users don’t bring their own devices to work just to be awkward. They do it because they’re not getting the performance, flexibility or – let’s face it – the user satisfaction they want from standard-issue laptops, smartphones and general infrastructure.

Putting up barriers or burying your head in the sand simply aren’t answers. It soon becomes them-and-us – the business and end users versus IT.

In fairness, all three stakeholders can make valid arguments for their cases. The Business demands speed and increased agility. End users want more freedom to work in the way they want, when they want and on whatever they want. IT however, has to be concerned about the traditional virtues of control, security and compliance.

But here’s the thing: If you can’t find a way to work with your users, they will soon find ways to work around you. You can’t manage what you can’t see. If you don’t enable and control BYOD, your users will go and do it anyway and you simply won’t know what’s going on.

No visibility means no control. And IT loses relevance.

So instead of seeing BYOD as the enemy, try and see it as an opportunity: a first step in emancipating your users and in generating real, quantifiable business value. It’s one of the key drivers behind the increasing pace of desktop transformation, an end-user computing model that can change the business’s relationship with IT – for the better.

A transformed Windows desktop – no longer tied to the narrow confines of the PC hardware and Microsoft operating system refresh cycles (or indeed, to the Windows PC at all) – enables seamless movement from the office to any connected device, with applications and content available anywhere, anytime. It makes BYOD a manageable, workable reality, because the nature and ownership of the endpoint device are no longer important.

Yes, it’s a big step. And yes, the journey from BYOD to business freedom requires a culture change throughout the whole organisation – in fact, it’s probably more about culture than technology.

An analogy I like to use is that of a heavy boulder rolling down a hill:

  • Try to stop it by standing in its path, and you’ll be flattened.
  • Stand aside and it will roll past you, gathering momentum. You’ll be just a spectator.
  • The best way is to harness the energy of the boulder and put it to work, driving new initiatives and delivering faster time to value and innovation to the business.

In other words, find new ways to live with change, and everyone will benefit.

Click here to learn more about desktop transformation

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