When it comes to adopting trends in the business world, it's usually the smaller businesses that get in on the action first. More nimble and having less entrenched bureaucracy separating the idea from the execution and constantly looking for an edge to become a bigger business, small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) have an edge in getting new plans in place. That's especially the case with bring your own device (BYOD) policies, as a new iGR report says that nearly 62 percent of SMBs have a BYOD policy in place at this time.
The iGR survey took place in February 2013 and involved IT managers at several SMBs. Findings reveal not only that a majority of companies had an official policy in regards to the BYOD movement in place, but on top of that 73 percent of companies were reporting on at least some level unofficial permission to bring personal devices to work. That being said, the company is aware such activity is going on yet is making no move to sanction or disallow the practice.
The survey also covered a variety of other topics, like the differences among SMBs that had and didn't have official policies on BYOD, the types of devices that were addressed under the official BYOD policies with a particular focus on smartphones, the breakdown of employees that are using their own smartphones and tablets in a normal working day, and whether or not IT departments are providing support for these devices.
One of the biggest takeaways here, as explained by the President and Founder of iGR, Iain Gillott, is that the issue of BYOD isn't holding steady, but rather steadily gaining. The idea of employees bringing their own devices to work and using them in the pursuit of work-related goals, is gaining ground at a lot of companies rather than leveling off or declining.
There's good reason for the trend to be on the rise. Not only does it take the capital expense burden off the business and put it onto the employees, it also provides a sound base from which to launch mobile workforce initiatives which can save a company money if used correctly. Having a work computer at home or on the road goes a long way toward making it easier to work remotely, as it has access to many of the same documents, applications and other files that make work possible. Having the policies in place to officially sanction BYOD, meanwhile, allows the necessary rules to be made that help ensure the best results for a BYOD setting. Once something's been officially approved, after all, that approval generally comes with a set of conditions under which the employees are expected to operate. That goes a long way toward making conditions ideal—or as close to ideal as they can get—and getting the best results.
With proper BYOD policies in place, companies can find the best way to get the most benefit out of a comparatively new practice.
Edited by Jamie Epstein