Accenture is providing extensive support for the use of Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) technologies across the enterprise. More than 137,000 smartphones and tablets already connect to Accenture’s e-mail today, up from 7,000 three years ago, and this total continues to grow at a rate of some 2,000 new devices per month.
The BYOD trend is so strong that for many companies, it may not be a matter of “if” but of “when,” and the answer could be sooner than anyone imagines.
Companies face a decision: find techniques to securely allow BYOD, or let devices proliferate and face the consequences. Currently, most BYOD usage will be incremental, with users adding personal devices to their corporate-supplied tools.
Eventually, the BYOD trend is projected to become substitutional, because that is where the savings are. Just as companies do not buy business clothing for most of their employees, there may well come a time when corporations will not buy technology devices either.
As companies decide how to respond to the BYOD phenomenon, they will need to address the application architecture of legacy systems.
Given the plethora of platforms, a viable approach to BYOD will drive companies to focus on either a browser-based architecture, as Accenture did starting in 2001, or leverage thin client overlay solutions.
If companies do not embrace the BYOD trend, or at least make sense of it, they will be at a disadvantage in the continuing war for talent. New entrants to the workforce expect flexibility in where they work and what devices they use.
Enabling your workforce to be productive on the go, outside the traditional office confines and after hours, promises to be a major business benefit of the BYOD phenomenon.