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Camden Council’s BYOD adoption soars by 240%

Caroline Baldwin

Camden Council has increased its bring-your-own-device (BYOD) scheme by 240% over the last three years.

The council workers are increasingly using their own devices in work, with 252 personal devices now being used across the organisation.

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UK think tank Parliament Street found that the council had 74 personal mobile and tablet devices in June 2012, which has increased to 252 devices in June 2014.

Camden saw a steep rise in the number of iPhones brought into the organisation from 24 in 2012 to 132 in 2014. iPads increased by 15 in 2012 to 60 in 2014.

Camden Council CIO John Jackson, said that BYOD within the council forms part of a wider agile working strategy which  includes getting rid of paper, moving to a laptop by default strategy and embracing unified communications to boost productivity and operate digitally by default.

"Staff welcome being able use their own devices and view Camden as progressive organisation in this area and enjoy working in ways that reflect how they want to get things done," he said. "Whilst its not a silver bullet and brings its own challenges in management and security I believe the upside is greater than the downside."

The local council has been working with technology supplier Accellion, as well as mobile deployment specialists Qolcom, to create a BYOD solution to serve its 8,500 employees and enable them to use Android and iOS-based devices. 

The main driver is to save money, which BYOD can do by cutting the need for IT to spend on devices for its staff, as well as internal support. 

However, the council also believes that allowing its staff to use the smartphones and tablets they want will make them happier in the workplace and increase productivity.

Earlier this year, the council launched its digital strategy to introduce radical change and innovation throughout the organisation.

“It’s almost out of date the day you publish it,” said Jackson, highlighting the need to constantly iterate the business use of technology as one challenge of creating a digital strategy.

“We will continue to align the big changes over the next few years to meet our financial challenges,” he said at the time it was published.

A greater use of open source, building partnerships with other local councils and becoming more joined up thanks to integrating siloed back-end systems, are all part of the plan.

The Camden strategy identified the need to train employees to deliver digital innovation.

“Camden needs to ensure staff are confident about digital technology and learn how it can deliver more efficient public services. The strategy intends to nurture its workforce by training staff in digital skills and sharing innovation and developments across services to accelerate changes and the emergence of new ideas,” said the strategy document.


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