The Benefits of IT Consumerization and BYOD for Businesses and Employees

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The Benefits of IT Consumerization and BYOD for Businesses and Employees
Anneke Zwart, Student (University), Netherlands

The usage of information and communication technologies in organizations is no longer guided by the organization itself, but rather by the younger workers who are more knowledgeable about new sophisticated technologies as they have never worked without them. Those workers often regard their own technological devices as better as those used at their organizations, as a result that they expect to be allowed to use their personal devices at work: there is a trend of blending personal and professional IT also referred to as BYOD (Bring Your Own Device).

The reactions of organizations towards IT Consumerization and BYOD are often more negative than positive. Organizations often focus on security and reliability issues, and also on the increased distractions at work and the consequences of that for productivity. As a result, the benefits of blending personal and professional uses of technologies are often not explicitly analyzed and addressed by organizational managers.

Leclercq-Vandelannoitte (2015) argues that a positive perspective on IT consumerization and/or BYOD can bring multiple benefits for organizations and employees:
  1. If managed effectively, IT consumerization and BYOD can actually foster innovation and increase productivities. It also can increase employee satisfaction, their productivity, creativity and commitment. Workers that use personal technologies at work create new and sometimes unexpected ways to use their devices at work, and organizations can benefit, for example if that leads to enhanced business processes. Therefore it can be useful for organizations to reconsider their perspective on IT consumerization and BYOD. This can actually create a new area of innovation, flexibility and creativity through its workforce.
  2. A more positive perspective and an effective management of IT consumerization is not only beneficial through behaviors of employees. It also triggers or even forces organizations to become more open and flexible by allowing greater digital freedom.
  3. Personal technological devices do not only increase the possibilities for distraction, they also increase the likelihood that employees use devices that best suit them.
  4. Workers also benefit in terms of increased control over how they manage their professional and personal lives in current dynamic workplaces.
Indeed taking a more positive perspective on IT consumerization and BYOD will help organizations to more efficiently benefiting from new technologies/devices instead of trying to avoid them.

⇒ Can you think of additional benefits of IT consumerization / BYOD?

Source: Leclercq-Vandelannoitte , A. (2015) "Leaving employees to their own devices: new practices in the workplace" Journal of Business Strategy Vol. 36 Iss 5 pp. 18 - 24.


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