Conquer BYOD By Treating Everyone As External

Bring-your-own-device (BYOD) policies are often focused on defining exactly what employees can and can't do. In some cases, it may be more helpful to stop drawing that distinction between internal workers and external users.

BYOD picture from Shutterstock

Gartner analyst David Mitchell Smith raised this idea during the keynote at Gartner's Application Architecture, Development & Integration Summit in Sydney this week. Smith reaffirmed a commonly-made point about BYOD: simply saying you're going to ban everything is rarely effective. "Control is an illusion. You put up all these barriers and people bypass them."

"That's what everyone is obsessed with — how to control bring your own device — and it's not the right approach. The simplest solution is to embrace it: start treating your internal world as if it was external." Shifting to that mindset means thinking more like a consumer, and less like a corporate manager. It doesn't mean you'll open up every piece of data in your business, but it can shift your thinking to how to manage access to resources, rather than how to deploy individual handsets.

That doesn't mean IT departments will readily make the shift. "Getting out of the way is very hard for people," Smith said. "They want to be involved in what's going on."

That externally-focused approach can also tie in with another two recommendations from the conference: focusing on apps rather than mobile sites , and concentrating on individual products rather than long-term projects. (For more advice on BYOD policy, check out our free ebook on making mobility real.)


Comments

    How beautiful, companies I have been contracted for generally want to the control for Bandwidth management reasons. Security is a concern aswell but control is required to control Bandwidth. If your fortunate enough to have more bandwidth than employees then before you take this approach please ensure all data secure :P

    The BYOD concept can be intimidating for IT staff, but there are strategies to minimize security risks and device management headaches. HTML5 technologies can allow users to connect to applications and systems without requiring IT staff to install anything on user devices. For example, Ericom AccessNow is an HTML5 RDP client that enables remote users to securely connect from iPads, iPhones and Android devices to any RDP host, including Terminal Server and VDI virtual desktops, and run their applications and desktops in a browser. This enhances security by keeping applications and data separate from personal devices.

    Since AccessNow doesn't require any software installation on the end user device IT staff end up with less support hassles. Any user that brings in their own device merely opens their HTML5-compatible browser and connects to the URL given them by the IT admin.

    Visit http://www.ericom.com/BYOD_Workplace.asp?URL_ID=708 for more info.

    Please note that I work for Ericom

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