BYOD: How Can Businesses Overcome Operational Barriers?
Today, more than 150 million personal terminals are used in business, blurring the lines between personal and professional sphere. This phenomenon, called BYOD (Bring Your Own Device), literally “bring your own device”, is affecting more and more employees. In a context where the majority of employees use their personal devices at work, how can we manage BYOD and the associated risks?
Far from being a simple fad, BYOD is increasingly establishing itself as the best mobile practice in business. It responds both to the aspirations of employees, who wish to have modern, convenient tools adapted to new professional uses without having to juggle between several devices, and to the concerns of companies, always looking for solutions to increase the mobility, flexibility and productivity of their teams. However, initial feedback has highlighted a number of operational obstacles that prevent companies from taking full advantage of BYOD, first and foremost application deployment.
The tricky equation that BYOD must resolve is how to reconcile the quality of a consumer user experience with the security and cost constraints specific to the company, and this on the employee’s own device. Indeed, BYOD does not consist in authorizing the personal use of a device provided and controlled by the company but, on the contrary, in implementing the applications necessary for the work of the employee on his personal smartphone, whatever it may be. the model.
To implement a true BYOD policy, it is therefore necessary to be able to deploy, secure and maintain applications on a fleet of necessarily heterogeneous devices and with respect for everyone’s privacy. Until recently, however, there were few ways to achieve this simply and effectively. The deployment of an application could take up to several weeks – an often crippling delay – while only certain phone manufacturers were supported (mainly Apple, Samsung, Sony and LG). Finally, the user had to grant administrators full access to device data (Mobile Device Management, MDM) and not to the data of each application (Mobile Application Management, MAM).
From Google to Apple, the web giants are taking the world of business and BYOD very seriously. They have understood that needs are changing, they are now updating their solutions while developing their business offers.
Unlike Apple, which is beginning to ease the restrictions imposed by MDM, Google has been developing for about three years a solution called Android for Work, part of which is specially designed to facilitate the adoption of BYOD. Culminating with Android Nougat, Android for Work now allows professional and personal environments to be partitioned on the same device. Control is thus shared between the employer, who, for security reasons, retains control of the professional part at all times, and the user, who, for his confidentiality, remains in control of his personal data. Android for Work in particular offers the possibility of temporarily deactivating the professional part, which constitutes a very powerful lever of adoption for employees who are now masters of the balance between their professional and personal life.
Thanks to Android for Work, it then becomes possible to set up in the essential Android universe real tools for deploying applications compatible with all phones on the market. These offer, for example, the possibility of creating real app stores to manage applications, access and authorizations related to the company directory and to delete only business data from the phone when needed.
Jeremy bodokh is a product manager for Appaloosa.