on 12 October 2013
This is a downloadable e-book that sets out some of the pros, cons and challenges facing I.T. departments in implementing Bring Your Own Device (BYOD). The next trend in corporate I.T. is "Consumerisation of I.T." (CoIT) and is the focus of this discussion document. Allowing employees to use equipment or their choice and, going further, their own equipment is seen as a positive thing because it engages the employee by using devices that they have positively chosen and are happy with whilst at the same time potentially reducing hardware costs for the company.
However, this freedom of choice for the employee and current I.T. department controls raises a fundamental dichotomy. Where does the "user experience" and "corporate management" begin and end? There is, or will be, a definite blurring of the boundary between home and work I.T. equipment.
It's not only I.T. challenges that need to be addressed but there are legal aspects too. Who "owns" the device and (more importantly) the data held on it. Extending your corporate Wi-Fi network to third parties can contravene the Wireless Telegraphy Act (2006) and there are tax implications on both the employee and employer.
This book does well at raising the awareness of these issues so that I.T. departments can begin to formulate a strategic vision. Indeed, it is a collection of discussion papers from various aspects of this I.T. challenge and even includes a discussion of why not to allow BYOD. As you would expect all the articles discuss what BYOD could mean to your company but there is no roadmap or concrete advice one way or the other. It's too early in the day to provide that but that does not detract from the "facts and opinions" presented in the book that would allow the reader a better understanding of the challenges that lie ahead. The corporate I.T. department will need to come up with their own plan to address the issues for your particular company but this book does provide a sound basis from which to begin your journey.