The IT community seems to be equally divided between seeing the whole BYOD phenomenon as a boon to corporate productivity or as a disaster in the making. In fact, a new global survey of 1,485 IT leaders, conducted by Vanson Bourne on behalf of Dell Quest suggests it’s even possible to hold both opinions.
The survey finds that while most IT people recognize why end users prefer to use their own device, they also realize they don’t have the tools and processes needed to effectively manage BYOD at any real level of scale.
Most IT organizations would prefer to move slowly and deliberately when it comes to BYOD. Unfortunately, in many cases, they have already lost control of the situation, which brings with it all kinds of compliance and security issues that IT organizations will more than likely be unfairly held accountable for.
Worse yet, Roger Bjork, director of enterprise mobility solutions at Dell, notes that BYOD is now leading to a bring-your-own-application (BYOA) phenomenon where IT is being asked to manage applications that may come and go at any time.
The survey makes it pretty clear that IT organizations are attempting to reassert control of BYOD and that their colleagues in Europe are significantly ahead in terms of achieving that goal.
But BYOD can’t be achieved without adding more complexity to IT environment, especially when it comes to shifting from a device-centric approach for systems management to a more user-centric approach that requires new tools and processes. Ultimately, the courts may soon decide that debate simply because regardless of corporate policies, a company is tacitly taking responsibility for all the information on that end user’s device, which would, for example, make them liable for losing an employee’s only photo of a deceased relative.
However the debate turns out, it is certain that management of IT will never be the same, which means the question going forward is no longer about what needs to be done, but rather where to get started.