Welcome!

Agile Computing Authors: Yeshim Deniz, Elizabeth White, Stackify Blog, Pat Romanski, Shelly Palmer

Related Topics: Microservices Expo, Mobile IoT, Containers Expo Blog, Agile Computing, @CloudExpo, SDN Journal

Microservices Expo: Article

Developing BYOD Strategies: Follow the Workers

Dell survey highlights importance of putting users before devices when developing BYOD strategies

The Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) trend has rapidly morphed from a disruptive worry into a strategic, positive initiative for many organizations across the globe, according to results from a new global survey released today.

In fact, significant business benefits often follow when BYOD-adopter companies empower their employees with their preferred devices and work habits, as well as more say in the applications and  data access they need to get their jobs done … anytime, from anywhere, the survey shows.

What's more, the rapidly improved productivity and enhanced collaboration among employees -- as well as greater communication and better service with customers, suppliers and partners -- are proving to be competitive advantages for companies that do BYOD best.

The survey was recently conducted by Dell Software Group and market researcher Vanson Bourne from nearly 1,500 IT executives around the world. It clearly demonstrates that, while BYOD shows promise, many organizations are struggling with making the most of BYOD. [Disclosure: Quest Software, part of Dell's Software Group, is a sponsor of BriefingsDirect podcasts.]

The majority of survey respondents agree that BYOD strategies deliver benefits -- more than 70 percent said they believe that BYOD can boost employee productivity and customer response time, and 59 percent say they feel their company could be at a competitive disadvantage if they didn't implement BYOD.

It's important that organizations define a program to help manage and protect their corporate information, but also to empower employees to do their jobs better and faster.

And attitudes toward the innovation impact that BYOD has are largely the same among the midsized (between 1,000 and 3,000 employees) and large (more than 3,000 employees) companies surveyed. Roughly half of respondents in both groups say that BYOD has significantly changed the business culture at their organizations.
Yet less than half of the IT leadership respondents -- 44 percent -- say they understand the importance of a user-centric approach to BYOD. And this is where many organizations are missing the boat, according to Dell Software.

"It's important that organizations define a program to help manage and protect their corporate information, but also to empower employees to do their jobs better and faster, or to improve customer satisfaction, or whatever the goal is," says Roger Bjork, Director of Enterprise Mobility Solutions at Dell Software Group. "Companies that do BYOD for a purpose, to help with a broader goal, are seeing better results versus those who simply let BYOD happen. A big part of that is focusing on the user aspect, and not limiting it to a device discussion."

To me these results should remove doubt that embracing desktop virtualization (VDI) and mobile device management are priorities for IT. I also think that BYOD is a catalyst to more general IT transformation and more business-centric emphasis for IT innovation. You could say that BYOD forms a capstone on the rising archway of VDI, web apps, thin clients, terminal services, and other applications delivery advancements overt the past 15 years.
The idea, of course, going back to the very first PCs, is to let the user decide how to work best.

Benefits of putting users first

Indeed, those survey respondents who say they believe the user-centric approach to BYOD is the right one also reported they are able to drive business benefits, satisfy users and gain a competitive edge to a higher degree than survey respondents who don't see the benefit of a user-centric approach. Some 64 percent of respondents say BYOD works well when the specific user needs are understood by IT.

And respondents at companies further along in their BYOD strategy implementations are more likely to agree that the most benefit is derived from programs that put the user first. Understanding individual user needs and the resulting improvements in employee productivity and satisfaction are much more important pillars of a BYOD strategy than simply allowing employees to use the device in their pocket or purse for work, says Bjork.

The survey data definitely shows companies that have well thought-out BYOD strategies have fewer issues and are garnering better results.

"You do a disservice if you make this about what shiny object do employees want to use to connect to email. It's much broader than that," he says. "I think the survey data definitely shows companies that have well thought-out BYOD strategies have fewer issues and are garnering better results."

A one-size fits all approach to BYOD does not work, says Bjork,  IT should manage the spread of BYOD. "You can't just let BYOD happen," he added.

A user-centric approach to BYOD fits with the recent trend for IT to transform into a service-delivery organization that understands not only the goals of the business, but how to support employees to help them achieve these goals, adds Bjork. What's more, as the Millennial Generation enters the workforce with certain digital expectations, user-centric BYOD policies can be leveraged as recruiting tools.
"Let's face it, this is not just a mobile thing. It has a much broader impact," says Bjork. "BYOD is a method, not a result. … You should start by asking 'What is the user trying to accomplish?'"

The bottom line is that IT now needs to support multiple ways of working for a variety of styles and devices that appeal and adjust based on user preferences and innovations.

Additional points

Other noteworthy points that arose from the survey:

  • Survey participants in the U.S. are least likely to stress users over devices when crafting a BYOD strategy, while respondents in Singapore were most likely to do so. Other geographies covered by the survey include the U.K, France, Germany, Italy, Australia, India and the Beijing region of China;
  • Respondents listed more flexible working hours, the ability to foster creativity, speed innovation, boost morale and facilitate teamwork and collaboration as personal gains for employees working with BYOD strategies;
  • Organizations that consider applications as part of a their BYOD strategy are more likely to link and manage devices per user; clearly define roles for their user community in one central database; track and support each user's level of mobility, and deliver applications to users based on their role within the company. Of those with no formal BYOD policy, 27 percent say they can't provide any of these functions;
  • The top five BYOD challenges listed by survey respondents are abuse of policies; theft/loss of mobile devices; lack of control over applications and data on devices; employees leaving the company with insider knowledge; and unauthorized data distribution.

Dell's position on the importance of a user-centric BYOD strategy comes from experience. Carol Fawcett was the CIO of Quest Software, which was recently acquired by Dell, with nearly 4,000 employees in 23 countries. The company focused on giving employees access to the applications and data they needed to get their jobs done, regardless of what device was being used.

The results of this latest BYOD survey reinforce the importance of putting users first in order to develop the most effective policies and turn BYOD into a long-term, sustainable business benefit.

"We found this approach helped us quickly move out of device firefighting mode to be much more strategic, which also enabled us to resolve our biggest BYOD problems, such as security, access

rights and data leakage," says Fawcett. "The results of this latest BYOD survey reinforce the importance of putting users first in order to develop the most effective policies and turn BYOD into a long-term, sustainable business benefit."

As Quest found with its own workers, the better planned the BYOD acceptance, the fewer negative issues and the better the productivity result. I recently spoke with Fawcett at length about the experience.

I think we should also expect that BYOD planning will be done in association with -- and as an accelerant to -- other larger initiatives such as data center consolidation, IT transformation, and applications modernization.

Bjork further suggested that companies that have a policy-based approach to security and access control, and adopt services oriented architectures and data lifecycle management will be in a better position to avail themselves of BYOD faster and at lower risk. VDI and thin-client initiatives also pave the way to BYOD.

(BriefingsDirect contributor Cara Garretson provided editorial assistance and research on this post. She can be reached on LinkedIn.)

You may also be interested in:

More Stories By Dana Gardner

At Interarbor Solutions, we create the analysis and in-depth podcasts on enterprise software and cloud trends that help fuel the social media revolution. As a veteran IT analyst, Dana Gardner moderates discussions and interviews get to the meat of the hottest technology topics. We define and forecast the business productivity effects of enterprise infrastructure, SOA and cloud advances. Our social media vehicles become conversational platforms, powerfully distributed via the BriefingsDirect Network of online media partners like ZDNet and IT-Director.com. As founder and principal analyst at Interarbor Solutions, Dana Gardner created BriefingsDirect to give online readers and listeners in-depth and direct access to the brightest thought leaders on IT. Our twice-monthly BriefingsDirect Analyst Insights Edition podcasts examine the latest IT news with a panel of analysts and guests. Our sponsored discussions provide a unique, deep-dive focus on specific industry problems and the latest solutions. This podcast equivalent of an analyst briefing session -- made available as a podcast/transcript/blog to any interested viewer and search engine seeker -- breaks the mold on closed knowledge. These informational podcasts jump-start conversational evangelism, drive traffic to lead generation campaigns, and produce strong SEO returns. Interarbor Solutions provides fresh and creative thinking on IT, SOA, cloud and social media strategies based on the power of thoughtful content, made freely and easily available to proactive seekers of insights and information. As a result, marketers and branding professionals can communicate inexpensively with self-qualifiying readers/listeners in discreet market segments. BriefingsDirect podcasts hosted by Dana Gardner: Full turnkey planning, moderatiing, producing, hosting, and distribution via blogs and IT media partners of essential IT knowledge and understanding.

@ThingsExpo Stories
BnkToTheFuture.com is the largest online investment platform for investing in FinTech, Bitcoin and Blockchain companies. We believe the future of finance looks very different from the past and we aim to invest and provide trading opportunities for qualifying investors that want to build a portfolio in the sector in compliance with international financial regulations.
Leading companies, from the Global Fortune 500 to the smallest companies, are adopting hybrid cloud as the path to business advantage. Hybrid cloud depends on cloud services and on-premises infrastructure working in unison. Successful implementations require new levels of data mobility, enabled by an automated and seamless flow across on-premises and cloud resources. In his general session at 21st Cloud Expo, Greg Tevis, an IBM Storage Software Technical Strategist and Customer Solution Architec...
Nordstrom is transforming the way that they do business and the cloud is the key to enabling speed and hyper personalized customer experiences. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Ken Schow, VP of Engineering at Nordstrom, discussed some of the key learnings and common pitfalls of large enterprises moving to the cloud. This includes strategies around choosing a cloud provider(s), architecture, and lessons learned. In addition, he covered some of the best practices for structured team migration an...
Product connectivity goes hand and hand these days with increased use of personal data. New IoT devices are becoming more personalized than ever before. In his session at 22nd Cloud Expo | DXWorld Expo, Nicolas Fierro, CEO of MIMIR Blockchain Solutions, will discuss how in order to protect your data and privacy, IoT applications need to embrace Blockchain technology for a new level of product security never before seen - or needed.
Imagine if you will, a retail floor so densely packed with sensors that they can pick up the movements of insects scurrying across a store aisle. Or a component of a piece of factory equipment so well-instrumented that its digital twin provides resolution down to the micrometer.
In his keynote at 18th Cloud Expo, Andrew Keys, Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise, provided an overview of the evolution of the Internet and the Database and the future of their combination – the Blockchain. Andrew Keys is Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise. He comes to ConsenSys Enterprise with capital markets, technology and entrepreneurial experience. Previously, he worked for UBS investment bank in equities analysis. Later, he was responsible for the creation and distribution of life settle...
No hype cycles or predictions of a gazillion things here. IoT is here. You get it. You know your business and have great ideas for a business transformation strategy. What comes next? Time to make it happen. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Jay Mason, an Associate Partner of Analytics, IoT & Cybersecurity at M&S Consulting, presented a step-by-step plan to develop your technology implementation strategy. He also discussed the evaluation of communication standards and IoT messaging protocols, data...
Coca-Cola’s Google powered digital signage system lays the groundwork for a more valuable connection between Coke and its customers. Digital signs pair software with high-resolution displays so that a message can be changed instantly based on what the operator wants to communicate or sell. In their Day 3 Keynote at 21st Cloud Expo, Greg Chambers, Global Group Director, Digital Innovation, Coca-Cola, and Vidya Nagarajan, a Senior Product Manager at Google, discussed how from store operations and ...
In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Raju Shreewastava, founder of Big Data Trunk, provided a fun and simple way to introduce Machine Leaning to anyone and everyone. He solved a machine learning problem and demonstrated an easy way to be able to do machine learning without even coding. Raju Shreewastava is the founder of Big Data Trunk (www.BigDataTrunk.com), a Big Data Training and consulting firm with offices in the United States. He previously led the data warehouse/business intelligence and B...
"IBM is really all in on blockchain. We take a look at sort of the history of blockchain ledger technologies. It started out with bitcoin, Ethereum, and IBM evaluated these particular blockchain technologies and found they were anonymous and permissionless and that many companies were looking for permissioned blockchain," stated René Bostic, Technical VP of the IBM Cloud Unit in North America, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Conventi...
A strange thing is happening along the way to the Internet of Things, namely far too many devices to work with and manage. It has become clear that we'll need much higher efficiency user experiences that can allow us to more easily and scalably work with the thousands of devices that will soon be in each of our lives. Enter the conversational interface revolution, combining bots we can literally talk with, gesture to, and even direct with our thoughts, with embedded artificial intelligence, whic...
When shopping for a new data processing platform for IoT solutions, many development teams want to be able to test-drive options before making a choice. Yet when evaluating an IoT solution, it’s simply not feasible to do so at scale with physical devices. Building a sensor simulator is the next best choice; however, generating a realistic simulation at very high TPS with ease of configurability is a formidable challenge. When dealing with multiple application or transport protocols, you would be...
Smart cities have the potential to change our lives at so many levels for citizens: less pollution, reduced parking obstacles, better health, education and more energy savings. Real-time data streaming and the Internet of Things (IoT) possess the power to turn this vision into a reality. However, most organizations today are building their data infrastructure to focus solely on addressing immediate business needs vs. a platform capable of quickly adapting emerging technologies to address future ...
We are given a desktop platform with Java 8 or Java 9 installed and seek to find a way to deploy high-performance Java applications that use Java 3D and/or Jogl without having to run an installer. We are subject to the constraint that the applications be signed and deployed so that they can be run in a trusted environment (i.e., outside of the sandbox). Further, we seek to do this in a way that does not depend on bundling a JRE with our applications, as this makes downloads and installations rat...
Widespread fragmentation is stalling the growth of the IIoT and making it difficult for partners to work together. The number of software platforms, apps, hardware and connectivity standards is creating paralysis among businesses that are afraid of being locked into a solution. EdgeX Foundry is unifying the community around a common IoT edge framework and an ecosystem of interoperable components.
DX World EXPO, LLC, a Lighthouse Point, Florida-based startup trade show producer and the creator of "DXWorldEXPO® - Digital Transformation Conference & Expo" has announced its executive management team. The team is headed by Levent Selamoglu, who has been named CEO. "Now is the time for a truly global DX event, to bring together the leading minds from the technology world in a conversation about Digital Transformation," he said in making the announcement.
In this strange new world where more and more power is drawn from business technology, companies are effectively straddling two paths on the road to innovation and transformation into digital enterprises. The first path is the heritage trail – with “legacy” technology forming the background. Here, extant technologies are transformed by core IT teams to provide more API-driven approaches. Legacy systems can restrict companies that are transitioning into digital enterprises. To truly become a lead...
Digital Transformation (DX) is not a "one-size-fits all" strategy. Each organization needs to develop its own unique, long-term DX plan. It must do so by realizing that we now live in a data-driven age, and that technologies such as Cloud Computing, Big Data, the IoT, Cognitive Computing, and Blockchain are only tools. In her general session at 21st Cloud Expo, Rebecca Wanta explained how the strategy must focus on DX and include a commitment from top management to create great IT jobs, monitor ...
"Cloud Academy is an enterprise training platform for the cloud, specifically public clouds. We offer guided learning experiences on AWS, Azure, Google Cloud and all the surrounding methodologies and technologies that you need to know and your teams need to know in order to leverage the full benefits of the cloud," explained Alex Brower, VP of Marketing at Cloud Academy, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clar...
The IoT Will Grow: In what might be the most obvious prediction of the decade, the IoT will continue to expand next year, with more and more devices coming online every single day. What isn’t so obvious about this prediction: where that growth will occur. The retail, healthcare, and industrial/supply chain industries will likely see the greatest growth. Forrester Research has predicted the IoT will become “the backbone” of customer value as it continues to grow. It is no surprise that retail is ...