For years, IT experts and CIOs have been concerned about their employees’ growing use of devices they purchase for both personal and work use. Security, cost, and privacy concerns have been mitigated with advances in technology, and also have given way to the significant productivity gains enjoyed by employers – and greater convenience enjoyed by employees – when workforces can use their personal devices for work. There are two key reasons why BYOD became the new normal for business in 2013.

1) Hardware became increasingly mobile

Recent trends show the line between mobile and non-mobile devices blurring. Laptops have become impossibly thin, light, and powerful and are more closely related to tablets – which are far powerful than anyone a year or two back could have predicted.

A Forrester survey of 35,000 corporate decision makers found tablets, and even laptops, were included with cell phones as mobile devices employees could purchase on their own and use for both personal and work purposes. More work than ever has become possible to do on the road or in satellite offices, increasing business’ access to top talent, improving productivity, and reducing costs.

The convergence of advances in cloud security features and increasingly mobile hardware has fulfilled the promise of BYOD.

2) Security, compliance concerns alleviated by the cloud

Secondly, dire warnings of security disasters haven’t come true. That fear may have kept Blackberry in business an extra year or two.

In 2012, an Intel survey of 3,000 international IT decision makers found that a lack of security features was the most important factor in preventing employees from choosing their own devices to use for work, and compliance was a close second.

But advances in cloud-based software that could ensure compliance, as well as quantify the productivity gains of allowing personal devices to be used for work, have contributed to making BYOD standard policy. In fact, research from late 2013 found that by 2017, most businesses would require that new employees provide their own devices for work, assuming they would also be used for personal purposes.

What’s next for BYOD?

The jump from an employee perk to requirement of doing business has been called “the most radical change to the economics of client computing” in the last 10 years.

It is for this jump to constantly mobile and connected workforces that CIOs and business executives need to prepare for next. Doing so requires implementation of flexible, cloud-based software that can be implemented on a wide variety of devices to ensure compliance, such as with marketing privacy regulations, and deliver robust activity reporting and analytics for the effective management of this new kind of workforce.

Contact Gryphon today to learn how reliable, cloud-based sales intelligence tools can maximize the benefits of BYOD for your sales teams.

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