Company employees own an increasing number of smart devices – smartphones, tablets etc – which they would like to use in the workplace if the WiFi network would only allow.
Connectivity inside companies is not keeping pace with the increasing number of smart devices in use, indicates a recent report. Commissioned by BT Global Services and Cisco and based on a survey carried out in May this year across 13 regions of the world, the report reveals that 56% of IT heads have noticed a performance decline in some applications, which negatively impacts the productivity gains promised by smart devices. Moreover, 84% of the organisations polled say that the use of smart devices has led to an increased demand for bandwidth. The survey enquired into workers’ attitudes towards use of their own smart devices – laptops, tablets and smartphones – and the results suggest that a number of changes are needed in order for the Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) approach to really make its mark.
Solutions to help promote BOYD
Some 45% of the employees surveyed still do not enjoy access to their company network from their personal devices, while almost half (46%) of workers who do have WiFi access at their office have experienced delays logging on or accessing an application, 39% saying they have noticed that applications and programmes are running more slowly now than before. Faced with this situation, 76% of those polled believe their organisation needs to take further steps to fulfil the potential productivity gains that smart devices offer. Asked to identify solutions, 33% of the respondents said that increased use of cloud solutions is what is needed to seize the opportunity and drive forward the concept of BYOD, while 32% pointed to greater use of specialist software and the same proportion wanted to see more support for smart device users.
A trust issue
Among staff currently without WiFi access at their workplace, 31% of those responding to the survey believe it would make them more efficient and productive, while 30% said that it would help them work more flexibly. However the need for better WiFi connection isn’t the only issue. The degree of trust companies place in their employees continues to play a major role in whether they decide to allow BYOD. It is of course a fact that when staff use their own connected devices this may well entail a security risk for the company. Neil Sutton, Vice-President Global Portfolio at telecoms giant BT Global Services, underlines that “organisations need to consider elements of device compatibility, security, WiFi, network, application performance, with a focus on driving costs down.”