The edge of the razor is a podcast series exploring “IT Services for the New Workplace” produced by CIO.com in association with HP Inc.
In this series, HP’s technology experts provide unique insights into the challenges of digital transformation and discuss how innovative cloud-based services, solutions and software can help you plan and prepare for what lies ahead.
The edge of the razor is hosted by Leif Olson, Distinguished Technologist at HP Inc., and he is joined by Bruce Michelson, HP Distinguished Technologist Emeritus at HP; Jeff Malec, HP Lifecycle Strategist and Technology and Solutions Evangelist; and Cody Gerhardt, HP Distinguished Technologist and Chief Technologist.
In Episode 3, the group discussed the concept of Bringing Your Own Device, or BYOD, which has been defined as “an approach to end-user computing that supports and encourages an organization’s end-users to access key managed IT resources on their own personal devices.”
Highlights from the episode follow.
Leif: “The first myth is that it costs less than a company-owned PC. That retail price may seem cheaper, but we’ll discuss why it isn’t. Second, it’s going to happen anyway, and IT can’t fight the trend. Third, it’s already happening. Fourth, I can close lifecycle management for my business users. Fifth, it improves end-user satisfaction. Six is that it reduces help desk calls. Seven, it has the support of leadership. Eight is that other companies do it. Nine, it reduces my risk. And 10, it’s like cell phones.”
The result? “It actually proves that none of these are really true, and that they really are myths about good reasons to use BYOD,” he said.
Bruce: Changing demographics will really drive BYOD, or at least the thinking behind BYOD.
“Right now, Millennials and Gen Z together represent about 25% of the market, depending on where the workforce is and what industry you’re in,” he said. “By 2030, they will make up 50% to 60% of the total workforce. So much of that generation’s behavior and desires will be reflected in many BYOD discussions that will take place.”
“As the installed base of devices begins to age after 36 months, BYOD is on the rise, especially as many organizations have extended the life of their devices during the pandemic,” he continued. “So now you might be comparing a shiny new consumer device to a five-year-old” [corporate] notepad notebook. … Yet the common belief is, ‘Hey, if I don’t buy the product, it generally costs less.’ Wrong answer! In fact, BYOD costs even more in most cases.”
Leif: “Just the raw cost of the PC” doesn’t tell the whole story.
Bruce: “What TCO tools and practices have taught the industry is that the purchase price of a product does not exceed 10% of the total cost of ownership. The rest of the cost of ownership is really stuck in software, direct support, the mobility infrastructure, service desk, etc. That’s where the real cost comes into play, in all things [having to do with] life cycle.”
As an expert on lifecycle topics in the group, Jeff identified three “pitfalls” in the BYOD lifecycle: security, management, and licensing.
Cory mentioned lifecycle software issues.
“It comes down to who runs the software, who keeps the software up to date, what software can be merged on that platform,” he said. “You could also have a user playing games. That can be a problem. There are all kinds of conflicts. And then there’s the data. Who owns the data for everything that’s on that platform?”
And what if the device is lost?
“There is an issue where the software configured in the MDM [mobile device management] software will try to erase everything in the commercial domain,” said Jeff. “But it’s hard to delineate personal and consumer data on those devices, and often you end up blowing up the system. You just wipe it all off. And if you haven’t backed up with a service like Microsoft OneDrive, all your photos, emails, and tax returns will be gone forever.”
Leif: “Let’s talk about the stakeholders. If the C-suite says, “Let’s adopt BYOB,” who has ultimate decision-making power?”
Bruce: “For me this is a very easy discussion. This is a security issue and the decision being made is that you allow non-business content in the corporate organization. And that is security 101. And everyone has a say in it.”
Cody: “I’m going back to a very simple statement that we often make: every IT decision is a security decision. … So if you look at a device that is BYOD and probably doesn’t have the same security rigidity as a commercial device, there’s a higher chance that that system will be attacked and data will be lost. I think I think it’s very simple now and moving forward because of the nature of technology. The baseline is a security decision. And if you can’t protect, monitor, manage and update it, that’s not a wise decision.”
Leif: “Okay, group, are you for or against BYOD? I’m against it.”
Bruce, Jeff and Cody: against it.
Finally, Leif gave a preview of the next episode of The edge of the razorwho will cover the topic of personas and user segmentation and their positive impact on the end user experience.
Have a question for Leif and the boys? You can reach them here: [email protected]
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Don’t miss Episode 1: Modern Management and Episode 2: The Great Resignation.