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Gartner: BYOD will encourage self-support

Cliff Saran

During the Gartner Symposium, earlier in November the analyst firm predicted that IT departments will be expanding their budget to support bring-your-own-device (BYOD).

As Computer Weekly previously reported, Gartner expects IT budgets will grow 1.4% driven by the take-up of mobile technology like smartphones and tablet computers.

There is likely to be increased helpdesk costs if IT expands desktop PC support to other devices. However, Gartner thinks many users of smartphones and tablets will develop their own support communities.

Self-support communities will offset the cost and manpower of providing a helpdesk for staff who use their own devices, Gartner has predicted.

This means IT departments will not need to replicate desktop support efforts on personal mobile devices that may be running operating systems (OS) such as variations of Android, iOS and Windows Phone.

Instead, users will likely share their expertise in configuring these devices with other users, which will ease the burden on the helpdesk. However, IT departments will need to ensure their security systems and policies do not prevent these devices from connecting to the company system – unless there is a legal or commercial requirement for the company to control data leakage.

Rather than continue with a lock-down IT strategy, Gartner has recommended that CIOs embrace BYOD by opening up corporate networks and supporting non-Windows devices like tablets and smartphones.

Gartner vice-president, Monica Basso, said: “It is not new for enterprise to push back on BYOD. We are in the phase of post-consumerisation. CIOs must begin to support devices from the consumer space.” 

She said businesses will need to look at how they share the cost of device ownership with employees who bring in their own devices.

Basso warned that IT departments will need to shift from standardisation and control to better ways to enable people to use their own devices at work.

Since there is no alternative to the Blackberry Enterprise Server for Android or iOS, IT will have to rethink security and invest, instead, in mobile device management (MDM) Basso added.

According to Gartner, the increasing penetration of Android in the enterprise will continue to pose challenges for the IT department and the CIO to ensure that security and manageability remain a priority. 

However, Android and iOS-based devices will continue to increase their presence in the enterprise side-by-side and, in most cases, instead of RIM. 

“As businesses are looking for a multi-device strategy and a rich application portfolio, it is clear that RIM has a huge challenge ahead in regaining its key presence in the enterprise,” said Gartner.


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