Close

Bring your own device? No thanks, say workers

As businesses struggle to manage the proliferation of consumer devices invading the workspace, bring-your-own-device (BYOD) policies are being viewed as one solution. But staff aren't so hot on the idea.

As businesses struggle to manage the proliferation of consumer devices invading the workspace, bring-your-own-device (BYOD) policies are being viewed as one solution. But staff aren't so hot on the idea.

A recent IDC report, Analysing the Bring-Your-Own-Device Trends in Australia and New Zealand, shows an increasing number of CIOs and IT decision makers are feeling top-down push by executives and bottom-up demand from employees to support tablets and smartphones.

"One in every two organisations are intending to deploy official BYOD policies, be it pilots, or partial- to organisational-wide rollouts, in the next 18 months," said IDC market analyst Amy Cheah.

"However, there is a disconnect between the assumptions and expectations held by CIOs and IT decision makers ... and the majority of employees when it comes to consumer technologies, device usage, and responsibility."

Only two out of 10 employees want to use their own device for work and for personal use, which means corporate devices are still desired by the majority.

IDC said for companies introducing BYOD, the result will likely be a broader range of devices and operating systems (OS) connecting to the corporate network at a more frequent rate, complemented by more frequent OS upgrades.

"Whilst many expect BYOD to help reduce costs, these shorter life cycles will need to be managed carefully in order to mitigate any blowouts in support, application modernisation, and lost employee productivity," Cheah said.

Unless BYOD strategies are fully supported by the majority of employees in any given organisation, she said, the deployment of such a policy may be simply problem shifting. Policies that are flexible and accommodating of all parties' preferences are more likely to be successful. In other words, "choice" will be a defining characteristic of successful device policies in the future.