BYOD: How to Go With the Flow

by November 13, 2013 0 comments

The concept of BYOD isn’t a fad that will go away. On the contrary, it will grow stronger, thanks to the proliferation of mobile devices like tablets, smartphones, ultra-portables, phablets, and so on. So the best way forward is to embrace the concept and see how it can bring business value to your organization.
Just as there are so many different devices and platforms, the ‘one size fits all’ strategy won’t work with BYOD. It will vary for different organizations, so it’s best to first prepare a long-term BYOD strategy with short-term, measurable milestones. These are important to show immediate value in what’s being implemented.
The first step for instance, could be to give Internet access to all mobile devices over your company’s WiFi network. The access should be restricted and monitored for data leakages. Later, you could open up the access to different corporate applications, and later still, create mobile specific applications. In case of personal laptops, you could give limited access to the company’s storage for file sharing.
This is obviously one scenario and a very generic one at that, and possibly the easiest to implement. But to see the real benefit of BYOD, you need to have a more specific objective and know the pain points of a specific target audience. The rest is a matter of defining the right set of processes and policies, ensuring compliance and risk control, and then selecting and implementing the right set of products and technologies in place to monitor devices, prevent data leakages, etc.
Banks for instance, hire agencies to manage different processes like credit card sales, collections, etc. Enabling them with mobile devices like tablets, smartphones can really enhance their productivity, but at the same time, it puts a big dent in the bank’s hardware capex budget. By providing these agencies with mobile apps that they can install on their mobile devices, a bank can offload the cost of hardware and enhance the productivity of their mobile workforce. However, for this to happen, the bank has to strengthen its back-end security infrastructure, setup a team to develop the app for different mobile platforms, re-define the processes that would get automated as a result, impart training to the staff, and much more.
If successful, the bank can then apply a similar strategy to other departments.
Similarly, other organizations can work out similar strategies for their employees and partners. A non-life insurance company for instance, could mobilize their field inspection agents with mobile apps that would allow them to submit reports off insurance renewal for a car on the spot. Internally, users could be given access to virtual desktops on their personal devices using VDI.

The possibilities with BYOD are end-less.

Have a great festive season!

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