V3 met up with software firm CA Technologies recently, and teased out a few details about its plans to roll out a bring your own (BYO) device scheme across the firm.
The consumerisation of IT has been well documented in recent months, and CA is dealing with this by adopting a formal approach to its staff bringing in their own devices. Plans are at an early stage at present, according to Colin Bannister, CA's UK chief technology officer.
He explained that a group in CA was looking into building a business case for the BYO scheme, baselining current IT equipment against the types of devices employees would choose.
"We're having to deal with this anyway. As much as internal IT people would like to stop it, you can't. People are bringing in Android devices and iPads," Bannister said.
The move to personal devices is very much being driven by the younger generation entering the workplace. Their working practices aren't always aligned to senior managers', who could be generalised as middle-aged, male and old-fashioned.
As evidence of this gap, Bannister cited a recent briefing CA held with 25 IT chiefs, where all but one had recorded notes using the traditional pen and paper.
Tablets and mobiles are also the biggest driver for security concerns at present, according to Bannister. Although there has been a spate of hacking attacks aimed at large enterprises from groups such as LulzSec, exposing weaknesses in corporate IT systems, he maintained there has been no rush of concern over these incidents.
"Most customers are trying to address the iPhone issue," he said. "It's a big headache for IT people to support devices like iPads and iPhones. What do you do about the data held on them, managing access to them, or if they're lost?"
While a thirst for Apple is driving this consumerisation shift in the workplace, traditional enterprise vendors are not necessarily seeing the benefits. Bannister said he was not aware of any enterprise customers using Windows Phone 7.
We'll be keeping up with CA on its BYO plans. If the firm goes ahead with the scheme, it could set a great example of an IT vendor practising what it preaches, and could also prove a helpful catalyst for other businesses considering going down this route.
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