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When the Business Demands BYOD – How Can CIOs Say “Yes”?

Author: Daniel Bissonnette

The Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) trend is changing the landscape of corporate IT and support model; with the proliferation of mobile devices, corporate networks are becoming more challenging to manage and more at-risk every day. Corporate IT is now forced to react and build a new end user-centric computing model because the days of a static, one-size-fits-all policy applied to company-owned assets are gone. Today, IT departments need to become more agile and adapt quickly to BYOD because it is already happening. 

Devices need to connect to networks, so they can provide convenient, secure access to authorized trusted users, manage the proliferation of devices, and proactively protect both personal and corporate data while managing a new level of support.  And as CIOs, you must be able to say “yes” and provide the necessary security and protection to the data.

The facts are the facts and users are already using the devices with or without permission on your network.  A recent Forrester Research, Inc., study of US information workers revealed that 37% are doing something with technology before formal permissions or policies are instituted. (Source: Benjamin Gray and Christian Kane, “Fifteen Mobile Policy Best Practices,” Forrester Research, January 2011.) With the right BYOD strategy, IT departments can mitigate the risk, say “yes” and even benefit from this paradigm change.    

The challenge for the CIO, then, is to build and implement a BYOD strategy that supports device diversity while putting the proper safeguards in place and keeping business and personal items separate. VMware has created a very unique approach for providing comprehensive support for device diversity, protecting sensitive data and enabling productivity to create a BYOD environment that works for everyone—employees and IT organizations alike.

The VMware approach links applications and customized virtual desktops to user identities, not devices, so end users can access the data from any qualified device, whether they’re working in the office or halfway around the world. Corporate and personal digital assets are kept separate in a safe and auditable way. IT controls the corporate assets, while end users manage and maintain their personal applications and data.

To maintain security, the networks that authenticate BYOD devices can be isolated so users access only the data and applications they should.  IT can apply policies at individual or group levels, to ensure that single users or whole departments with access to sensitive data to operate within stated guidelines. For example, IT can restrict USB capabilities for finance employees, and can prevent social security numbers or credit-card information displayed in text files from being copied or printed.

The VMware approach for BYOD allows IT to think less about devices and more about the user experience and enabling the employee. This shift in focus, from devices to access and activity, makes BYOD improvements more visible and easier to measure. IT can be more responsive and operate more cost-effectively and is likely to be perceived as being more flexible and more open. Most important, this pragmatic approach to BYOD can make the organization more productive, and that, in turn, can drive profitability and attract and retain top-tier talent who rely on tools that were traditionally blocked from use at many other companies.

If you are considering a BYOD strategy and are wondering where you should start, VMware Accelerate can help. We have helped many customers through this transition and, we have also taken on this challenge internally and learned first-hand what to expect. (Source: CIO.com – VMware going all in on BYOD) We have created a complete, actionable strategy for helping map your transition to BYOD that we can share with you. Accelerate Advisory Services can help CIOs say “yes” to BYOD by:

  • Benchmarking data on your current virtualization position to peers and the industry
  • Leveraging a proven desktop virtualization model for BYOD
  • Providing a roadmap the end user centric computing model
  • Performing an operational readiness  assessment
  • Defining a Value Hypothesis, ROI and value proposition

Accelerate can help you undertake your BYOD transformation. Visit our Web site to learn more about our offerings, or reach out to us today at: accelerate@vmware.com for more information.

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