Bring Your Own Device (BYOD)
Unless one has been living under a rock or has been magically transported from the middle ages, one might have noticed the burgeoning trend in mobile devices. The technology has reached a point where what many would consider science fiction a decade ago, would now be considered commonplace. By the middle of this year, there might be more smartphones and tablets in circulation than there are PCs in the world. At this time we are already starting to see changes to how people and companies do their daily work, and it looks like the world is preparing for another change, specifically the time of the Cube People might be coming to an end, and the Mobile Nomads will be taking over.
The number of organizations embracing Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) and work anywhere or work shifting programs are increasing. Work flexibility is one of the key elements required in order to recruit real talent and reduce employee attrition. How BYOD and work shifting correlates with employee attrition is simply this; attrition is mainly associated to workplace proximity and people generally choose their work based on commute time and convenience, so staying at home to work or somewhere else other than the office is a tremendous boost in satisfaction. With this convenience, organizations are reporting an average of 25% reduction in employee attrition simply because BYOD and work shifting are able to bring more employee satisfaction compared to any other motivational strategies that companies have traditionally implemented.
Because of this work anywhere with your own device trend, there is an increasing demand for proper mobile management systems and practices as well as better collaboration systems that will cater to this new scattered workforce. Meetings will never go away, and employees still do need to talk to their peers and superiors, but how to do this remotely, efficiently, and conveniently should be the new center of attention for enterprises and in particular, software and hardware developers. There should be an increased focus on mobile device management strategies that can easily scale to modern demands, which offer robust security without the hassle of manually configuring each device. However, recent setbacks show that some companies and executives are not ready for telecommuting offerings as some skepticism has emerged since Yahoo.com has removed work-from home policies.
The BYOD trend is also putting new masks on old fears, particularly that of data loss. In this article by Thor Olavsrud – posted within the Mobile Enterprise 360 community, Thor has compiled various best practices for implementing BYOD and even cites solutions to make this possible. The bottom line is that in order to improve security and data protection, organizations should be focusing on the data and not the mobile device itself. There is virtually no full-proof solution for keeping a device from getting lost or stolen, but data is truly different as it can be secured in the right environment. One particularly good way is to implement a virtual environment within the device where the employee can work and access all relevant data, but no data is ever actually saved within the device, both applications and data are cloud based, with the device simply serving as a portal.
Now according to Paul Kapustka in his article Mobile Security: User experience is key to success. This security is only as good as long as it’s used prudently. People will always look for alternatives even to security as long as they feel that it performs exceptionally well and is within their tastes.
However, we have to be careful that the solution we apply should not be too restrictive, or else nobody would use it. For more articles regarding mobile management please visit The Mobile Enterprise360 Community
By Abdul Salam