New technology is entering the workplace like never before and enabling new processes and practises all the time. One of these is “Bring your device” or BYOD for short, which is a policy that means workers now use their own devices for enterprise work practices, rather than one provided by their workplace. Gartner predicted way back in 2013 that 2017 would see 50% of workers using their own device. I’m not so sure that we’ve reached those heady figures just yet, but what I do know is that the BYOD trend is on the move again and this article takes a look at just what it is that might be driving this trend.
Enter Generation Z
Yes, those pesky young kids are now entering the workplace and shaking things up! Gen Zedders are changing the rules like never before in all walks of life. This generation has grown up eating IT for breakfast, social media for lunch and IOT for dinner and it has made them demanding and hard to please!
Significantly more tech savvy than their older counterparts, they are driving technology and new policies it enables into the workplace. They look at big, old rugged devices running odd operating systems and wonder what the heck they are, preferring to use something familiar. Add to this, they are also driving flexibility into the workplace. What’s wrong with delivering a parcel and then quickly checking your Facebook account, maybe firing off a couple of texts on the move via voice or google assistant? These are genuinely the “scan one, message on” generation who need one device that can do it all or they’re going to work somewhere else.
Not only is technology itself innovating at the fastest rate I can remember, but the adoption of it is too. Businesses now have to keep up or they run the risk of becoming old-fashioned places to work in and great people won’t want to work there!
Technology is great enabler and businesses are starting to understand that it can give employees what they need but also the business can win too. So in terms of BYOD, there are now devices that run everything that a consumer phone can but are secure, slim but rugged and also have the latest features on them. If I told you about a phone that had a fingerprint reader, NFC, Android 7.0, was about 7mm slim, had a 5.5″ screen and 16MP camera then you’d be forgiven for thinking that I was talking about a 2016 spec consumer phone. Actually, these are just some of the specs of our very own rugged smartphone, the Raptor C5. It’s technology like this that’s also driving BYOD into smaller businesses and the mainstream.
Margins and cost saving
Love it or hate it, businesses will always try to cut costs and BYOD done well will do that for you! With a UK economy still largely on it’s back, Brexit looming and poor exchange rates, these continue to be tough times for all of us, so expect to see businesses trying to outsource their mobile device strategies to workers more and more.
We saw a number of huge security breaches in 2016/17 involving big brands and proving that we always have a long way to go to make our business systems and the data in them secure. However, in general security for mobile devices is way better than it was a couple of years ago and it’s getting better all the time. OS operators like Apple and Android are improving their OS security with every update but also apps, networking and practises are too. Al of this enables BYOD to flourish.
Driving a new way to work
An overwhelming number of people are now working for themselves and one of the key drivers of this trend is people working in flexible, non-contracted jobs like Uber, Deliveroo and Amazon pickers. Now there are some worrying trends on this kind of work practice but they also give people a lot of flexibility and other benefits in their lives which are quite attractive to millennials. Work like this and you’ll be using your own device.
I don’t think BYOD is for everyone and we’ll talk about that and some of the negatives of BYOD in the next blog, but it’s certainly not going away and the trend is on the rise once again.
Does your business have a BYOD device policy? If so let us know your thoughts in the comments below.