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BYOD programs set to skyrocket with the help of tablets

By Catherine Knowles, Mon 17 Nov 2014
FYI, this story is more than a year old

BYOD is becoming more common, and by 2018 Gartner predicts twice as many employee owned devices will be used for work than enterprise owned devices.

Tablets increase accessibility and affordability of bring your own device (BYOD) programs when compared to laptops and smartphones, says Gartner.

IT departments can support nearly three times more users in tablet BYOD programs than enterprise-owned tablet programs, Gartner says.

“IT leaders can spend half a million dollars to buy and support 1,000 enterprise-owned tablets, while they can support 2,745 user-owned tablets with that same budget,” says Federica Troni, Gartner, research director.

“Without a stipend, direct costs of user-owned tablets are 64% lower. When organizations have several users who want a tablet as a device of convenience, offering a BYOD option is the best alternative to limit cost and broaden access,” she says.

Alternatively, smartphone programs have a total cost of ownership similar to those of enterprise owned smartphones, Gartner says. Savings can be made, but only when the organisation pays for partial, or doesn’t reimburse or subsidise for, voice and data plans, says Gartner.

Throughout 2017, Gartner says 90% of organisations will support some aspect of BYOD to varying degrees of maturity, and by 2018, there will be 50% more employee owned devices used in businesses than those owned by the enterprise.

According to Gartner, establishing the right support structure and foundation for BYOD programs is an important part of containing the cost and taking advantage of potential savings.

Troni says, “While BYO initiatives for mobile devices can lead to cost savings, it is not always the case.”

Gartner says when designing BYOD programs, organisations need to have a primary goal, for instance, user satisfaction, cost reduction or mobile expansion, as different goals can conflict each other.

It is important for businesses to establish the IT department's responsibilities for end-point devices support, ensure users accept the responsibility for handling a higher number of support issues related with their own device, and set an appropriate level of reimbursement for voice and data costs.

“A balanced mix of enterprise-owned and user-owned devices with different levels of stipends will be the most effective way of capitalizing the benefits of BYOD programs, both in terms of cost reduction and in terms of level of access to mobile technology,” says Troni.

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