BYOD: Boon or Bane?

The new buzz at the workspace is BYOD. It stands for Bring Your Own Device. And this is changing the way people work and enterprises get work done. What this means is, when you join an company, they do not give you a lappy or a PC to work with. You get to bring your own device, a lappy, PC or as it is the case more often, your own tablet or smartphone. This is a good trend. But like everything else, there are pros and cons to it. Let us look at this today.
The good side of this is the fact that we get to chose the device of our choice to get work done. That is very good for productivity. The amount of work that can be done also improves with this. There is also the fact that the device is mine and hence I get to keep it even if I part ways with my employer. To me, this also means that I get to carry my huge music library along with my work file. So the employee is all excited about it.

The enterprise though has a few more things to worry about, security for starters, how does a company secure it’s IP over a broad spectrum of  platforms and devices. How does the enterprise segregate personal and corporate data and how can the corporate data be wiped when someone leaves?

These are a few questions. This also implies that the cloud storage overhead also increases for the enterprise as none of today’s mobile devices come with storage comparable to a PC and also the fact that the corporate cloud can be secured better than thousands of copies of data scattered over devices.

From my personal experience, the following points are key

  1. Clearly specify allowed/supported platforms right down to the last decimal digit
  2. IT spending focus should be on security, cloud and segregation in that order
  3. Pre-join wipe and post-exit wipe to be mandated
  4. Anti-theft software is a key component that plays important role

I think that BYOD is cool if implemented correctly and clearly.Let me know what you think.

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