In 1997 analyst Gartner estimated that the toal cost owership of desktop PCs was £500 per year. IT departments were wasting vast amounts of their budgets trying to administer a PC estate comprising computers which they had no control over. PCs gave end users immense flexibility to run whatever software they wanted and manipulate data in ways that were not possible in the days of centralised computing. But this flexibility came at a huge costs, in terms of IT support and maintenance.
IT hit back with the locked down desktop strategy, in which it took back control of unmanaged deskops. Today’s corporate PCs are usally run in a fully managed environment, where users have little control over what software they can run. In many ways IT operated a command and control management structure over the PC estate.
The explosion of Netbooks, smartphones and social media sites is now forcing IT to rethink. Unless they allow users to bring their own devices into the company, and access Wi-Fi within the company’s office, IT risks a user revolute.
The writing is on the wall for command and control style IT management. Just as centralised mainframe computing was replaced by the minis, then the PC, now IT must decentralise to support the commoditisation of IT. Read article >>