One of the biggest trends or patterns being talked about in the IT users and providers now is BYOD – Bring Your Own Device. Essentially this is where employees/consultants bring their own computers, phones, tablets or such devices to work and insist on using them rather than the devices provided by their organizations.
Obviously, there are many advantages and challenges in allowing BYOD in an organization and there are camps on both sides of the question with adherents arguing their points with religious fervor. So in most organizations we talk to, this transformational process is in limbo and everybody is unhappy!
We think the CFOs with their eye on finance and operational efficiency can bring the weight of their wisdom to bear on this topic and help the organization take advantage of the benefits.Argument 1 – Cost Reduction:
The cost of buying new PCs, Cell Phones, Tablets and maintaining them is very well known to all CFOs. We are yet to meet a CFO who does not feel that every corner he/she turns, there is an outstretched hand of their IT teams asking for more money with dire predictions of email shutting down, compliance requirements not being met, information not being available on time…..!
BYOD is a great ally in once and for all times reducing if not eliminating the cycle of buying ever new PCs , Tablets and Cell Phones. Users can buy the devices that work best for them on their own dime and use them for business. The issues on losing a device, or breaking it, or misplacing it get reduced substantially as users take ownership of their individual items. IT departments can get out from the support and upgrade cycle curse!Argument 2 – Productivity Enhancement:
When employees can use the same PC/Tablet that they spend their personal time with, their productivity on the job would be enhanced as they do not expend any time learning or changing their behavior between devices. Also, they will learn the short-cuts and other aspects of the system needed to master the usage leading to better productivity.
IT Teams released from the burden of answering and attending every small real or perceived problem of the users can focus on more important tasks such as improving overall system security, adoption of new technologies and other issues.Argument 3 – Unleash Innovation:
Both employees and IT teams can be encouraged to share their experiences across their work and personal lives to think innovatively about their work and find useful solutions. Last we checked, there is no law which states that the most cutting edge app has to come from two kids in a garage! Given the experience and a little encouragement coupled with the freedom that BYOD fosters, organizations may be poised to reap benefits of innovation coming right within their employee ranks.Summary:
CFOs as custodians of the life blood of the organization(i.e. cash) are one of the most respected leaders in the business and can be great advocates to put their weight behind BYOD. This will help employees, IT teams and business overall.
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