According to Forrester, 29 percent of today's global workforce comprises "anytime, anywhere" information workers. By 2016, more than 200 million employees are expected to use a personal device at work. Asian enterprises will be a key driver of this trend. In a recent study conducted by Dell, the three biggest adopters of the Bring Your own Device (BYOD) trend in Asia were Singapore, Australia and China. Seventy percent of the companies surveyed believed that BYOD can help their work processes because of the mobility afforded, and as such, lead to an increase in productivity. Furthermore, 59 percent of companies also believed that they would be at a competitive disadvantage without BYOD.
With enterprises viewing mobility as an integral part of their working processes, it is no surprise that employees also expect to be able to access information and collaborate on the move. This trend is driving the emergence of a new model for business technology; one where mobile is the default state of working, where applications flow seamlessly across integrated and intelligent communication networks to deliver anything to anyone on any device, in a quick, secure and reliable manner.
This is mobile as defined not by corporate procurement departments, or the IT team, but by employees and the business. This is mobile coming from the consumer world into the enterprise, and it is challenging the accepted rules of how business IT should work.
This thus leaves businesses with a fundamental question to answer. How can they manage increasing numbers of sophisticated mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets within the corporate IT infrastructure, without compromising network functionality, security, and reliability? How effectively they address this challenge, and manage their mobile estate, is increasingly critical for their current and future business success.
Impact on corporate culture
To get the best out of BYOD, enterprises should evaluate and establish a sound device management strategy. This should start with an in-depth overview of corporate objectives, business drivers and any specific pain points. The analysis will help to identify potential benefits based on the types of devices involved, the business processes in which current and future devices are involved and the security, governance and cost of ownership implications of corporate devices versus that of BYOD.
The enterprise's device management strategy must also encompass an analysis of the impact of the mobilisation of people and processes on the business, including its corporate culture. While the checklist is simple, the implications of missing out on any area can be tremendous. These key steps are as follows:
1. Analyse and document current device security and management procedures and cost
2. Define requirements to constrain or permit access and transport of corporate data
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