Business couple standing asideAt INCo, we’re often asked what we think are key drivers of change in the IT and Consulting marketplace. At the moment, BYOD is a powerful catalyst for change, and improvement, in in-house IT

Increasingly companies are not only tolerating employee usage of personally-owned, wirelessly-enabled devices in the workplace but are actively encouraging it by introducing comprehensive BYOD programmes. After all, there are 5 billion devices out there, and the number is about to grow to 15 billion by 2015, according to Intel.

The BYOD trend has made a lot of IT departments nervous, with concerns over control and security, but with the right framework and policy in place, BYOD can release important benefits for a business. The following is an abstract of an article by Justin Hadler of Hardware.com, in Business Review Europe.

Empowering Employees

By allowing employees to bring their own devices to work, a business is affording them the same choice they have come to expect in their personal lives. They get to use the devices, including both hardware and software, of their choice and have the flexibility to work anywhere, any way.

A BYOD programme also has the potential to attract new talent. According to Cisco’s 2011 “Connected World Technology Report,” for one third of the 2,800 US students surveyed, device flexibility, work mobility, and access to social media were more important than salary.

Boosting Productivity

Today most individuals are highly adept at using their personal smartphones, tablets, and laptops outside of work, and these skills translate when working in a BYOD-friendly environment.

With their own device, employees can engage with one another more quickly even when away from their desks. Faster internal communication has the potential to allow a business to run more efficiently with queries answered and action points agreed speedily.

Customer or client engagement can also be dramatically improved from such a policy.

Curing IT Headaches

With a sound framework in place, BYOD can prove to be the soothing balm, rather than the cause, of a number of IT headaches in the long-run.

Additionally, by using applications such as Smartsheet, Dropbox and Google Docs, employees have the ability to complete many projects without the help of the IT department. New applications are continually being launched, meaning it is likely a solution exists for any business task. IT staff can focus more time and resources on proactive, strategic tasks.

BYOD is more than just a necessity. It is rapidly emerging as a proactive, forward-looking route to giving employees the freedom and choice they want; boosting their productivity, while releasing IT departments from significant financial and management headaches.