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BYOD and ITSM: What you need to know

Gerard Norsa | May 6, 2013
Highly functional personal devices are increasingly being adopted as technology tools in enterprise IT environments. This represents yet another challenge for CIOs and senior IT managers trying to use standards and frameworks-based IT service management (ITSM) processes for better governance and business benefits.

"The key thing is to ensure that processes around service request and incident management are still followed," Talbot said. "Mobility just provides easier access to effectively participate in those ITSM processes.

"Companies without in-depth ITSM practices will not realise the benefits of BYOD and it does have the potential to make communication less effective. Companies with ITSM best practices in place will be able to provide employees with accurate information will realise benefits, so BYOD is not a threat but when approached correctly is actually further justification for ITSM best practice."

In 2011, Citrix Systems presented the results of their Bring-Your-Own (BYO) Index which revealed that 92 per cent of IT organisations are aware that employees are using their own devices in the workplace and 94 per cent intend to have a formal BYO policy in place by mid-2013.

Interestingly, the research found that attracting and retaining the highest quality talent, increased worker productivity and mobility and greater employee satisfaction, as well as reducing IT costs, are the primary drivers of BYO adoption.

Macanta's Ferris, agreed with these survey results. She said forward thinking organisations have to allow good quality staff and new generation workers to work on the devices of their choosing.

"Students leaving school and university where they have been able to plug in their own devices are not going to be satisfied if they have to use equipment provided by the employer and that they are not allowed to connect their own devices," Ferris said. "This will be seen as archaic, restrictive and unsatisfactory."

While Dimension Data's Jansen said that metrics around the benefits attainable through the adoption of formal BYOD policies and processes are hard to establish, he still thinks the anecdotal evidence is strong.

"BYOD in isolation will deliver few financial benefits to an organisation other than improved staff satisfaction," Jansen said. "Most CFOs will argue that this is intangible. The effort, cost and complexities generally negate any of the capex savings that might be made.

"However, when BYOD is combined with mobility, the benefits magnify each other. It accelerates the adoption of mobility and removes inflexibility in a mobility strategy. Sometimes these benefits are thought of only in productivity terms, however we have found that there are many more."

According to Jansen, Dimension Data saw benefits in flexibility of workplace and flexible work arrangements which saves costs in physical office space and reduces staff turnover with all its costs.

"IT service continuity and business continuity is improved because people can work anywhere and do anything in the event of natural and other disasters," he said.

"There is better access to corporate information regardless of location and we believe that better decisions are being made as anything and everything is at anyone's fingertips, at any time and on any device.


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