There have been a number of disruptive IT trends to impact companies and government organisations over the past decade, but bring-your-own-device (BYOD) is one that needs to be addressed now.
The act of staff bringing their own technologies into the workplace is something that cannot be ignored, especially given both the benefits and pitfalls of the trend.
It's important to understand how BYOD impacts organisations, the current state of the trend and what measures are required to ensure it remains manageable through implementation.
How BYOD impacts organisations
Few trends can cause changes like BYOD, especially when staff begin to use their own devices en masse. This means companies no longer have complete control over the technologies in use by staff – something that certainly requires appropriate assessment.
BYOD could mean staff begin using smartphones to access company networks, or bring their own laptops in order to to work collaboratively with other employees. The security risks are apparent – without a strategy or framework in place, staff are able to bring devices into the workplace that unintentionally contain malicious software.
Effective control over any form of BYOD within an organisation should become a top priority.
ITIL and BYOD
Managing these devices is essential, in order to retain a strong hold over IT security within the company. It's here where IT service management (ITSM) can play a strong role, ensuring strategies are put in place from the outset of BYOD implementation.
BYOD is certainly a foreign concept for many companies and incorporating a framework means proven concepts are used to keep device use under control.
In a CIO article released last year on the role of BYOD and ITSM, director of Macanta Karen Ferris explained that the trend can have a significant impact on the ITSM processes.
She outlined how all the steps defined in the ITIL lifecycle framework (service strategy, design, transition and operation) need to be readdressed whenever BYOD is in use.
"For instance, service strategy needs to consider the adoption of BYOD in the organisation," she explained.
"It may not be appropriate to every organisation and it may not be appropriate to every employee within the organisation but careful consideration needs to be given to the ramifications of a BYOD strategy."
A growing trend
BYOD isn't something that can be placed on the back burner, as it's beginning to see substantial growth among businesses across the Asia Pacific and in the US.
In the Asia Pacific alone, BYOD use is predicted to see strong growth throughout 2014 and into 2015. This is according to a recent study by the International Data Corporation (IDC), which also found that in 2013, 22.5 per cent of smartphone purchases were for BYOD. What's more, 11.7 per cent of laptop purchases fell under the same umbrella.
"With the user experience of mobile devices improving, end users can start to perform more complex tasks on those devices. In addition, the price of device has also dropped to a level where increased proliferation becomes possible," said Ian Song, a research manager at the IDC.
In a similar study in the US performed by Gartner, taken from a survey among 4,300 US consumers, 30 per cent said they used personal devices for some form of work. This study also detailed the dangers of the BYOD trend, noting that device use is growing in organisations even when not sanctioned by an employer.
An IT service management framework is needed to ensure BYOD remains under the control of a company, and it's important to source the right training.
Whether for an IT professional or a group of individuals within a company, ALC Training/PDA offer the most appropriate courses for certification.
Get in touch with us today to find out more about our diverse range of training courses across a number of frameworks and methodologies.