BYOD to kill off corporate-owned devices in 40% of enterprises


Nearly 40 per cent of CIOs expect to stop giving workers corporate-owned devices by 2016, as the adoption of Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) programmes hots up.

This is according to the findings of a worldwide survey by market watcher Gartner into CIO attitudes to BYOD.

The analyst claims BYOD adoption is most common in mid-to-large enterprises with between 2,500 and 5,000 employees, with US firms more likely to embrace the trend than their European counterparts.

In fact, the organisation claims Europe has the lowest BYOD adoption rate of all the regions covered by its research.

The enterprise should subsidise only the service plan on a smartphone.

This could be because some organisations have a poorer grasp of the benefits BYOD can provide, making it difficult to justify introducing a formal business policy on the topic.

David Willis, vice president and distinguished analyst at Gartner, said the business case for BYOD needs to be better evaluated.

"Most leaders do not understand the benefits, and only 22 per cent believe they have made a strong business case," said Willis.

"Mobile initiatives are often exploratory and may not have a clearly defined a quantifiable goal, making IT planners uncomfortable.

"If you are offering BYOD, take advantage of the opportunity to show the rest of the organisation the benefits it will bring to them and to the business," he added.

Another area of consideration for companies that want to embrace BYOD is how they reimburse employees that use their own devices in the workplace.

Gartner's research suggests half of all BYOD programmes offer partial reimbursement to their staff, a trend it expects to continue.

"The enterprise should subsidise only the service plan on a smartphone," said Willis.

"What happens if you buy a device for an employee and they leave the job a month later? How are you going to settle up? Better to keep it simple. The employee owns the device, and the company helps to cover usage costs."

Data security also emerged as a top BYOD concern for CIOs, although half of the respondents said they highly rated their approach to this topic.

"It is essential that IT specify which platforms will be supported and how, what service levels a user should expect, what the user's own responsibilities and risks are, who qualifies, and that IT provides guidelines for employees purchasing a personal device for use at work, such as minimum requirements for operating systems," Willis concluded.

Caroline Donnelly is the news and analysis editor of IT Pro and its sister site Cloud Pro, and covers general news, as well as the storage, security, public sector, cloud and Microsoft beats. Caroline has been a member of the IT Pro/Cloud Pro team since March 2012, and has previously worked as a reporter at several B2B publications, including UK channel magazine CRN, and as features writer for local weekly newspaper, The Slough and Windsor Observer. She studied Medical Biochemistry at the University of Leicester and completed a Postgraduate Diploma in Magazine Journalism at PMA Training in 2006.