Ovum eggs on BYOD market

ovumResearch outfit Ovum is telling the world+dog that the bring your own device trend is here to stay.

One of the findings of Ovum’s 2013 multi-market bring-your-own-anything employee study indicates that the trend is not only just “here to stay” it is also going to increase.

Corporate BYOD activity by full-time employees has remained steady at almost 60 percent over the past two years.

Already global industry analysts warn business leaders to respond and adapt now to this change in employee behaviour, rather than being steamrollered by it, the report said.

Ovum said that nearly 70 percent of employees who own a smartphone or tablet choose to use it to access corporate data. The personal tablet market continues to grow, and with personal tablet ownership by FTEs rising from 28.4 per cent to 44.5 per cemt over the last 12 months, more businesses will see these devices on their networks.

The report said that this will happen whether the CIO wants it to or not. More than 67.8 percent of smartphone-owning employees bring their own smartphone to work, and 15.4 percent of these do so without the IT department’s knowledge and 20.9 percent do so in spite of an anti-BYOD policy.

Richard Absalom, consumer impact technology analyst at Ovum said that it was impossible to stand in the path of consumerised mobility.

“We believe businesses are better served by exploiting this behaviour to increase employee engagement and productivity, and promote the benefits of enterprise mobility,” he said.

Ovum’s research also depicts the rise of a “bring-your-own-application” trend.

While email and calendar remains the most commonly used application on both corporately provisioned and personally owned devices, the usage of new-generation cloud productivity applications, such as enterprise social networking, file sync and share and IM/VoIP, is growing fast.

What worries Ovum is that these types of apps are increasingly being sourced by employees themselves and not through managed corporate channels. A quarter of employees discovered their own enterprise social networking apps, while 22.1 percent of employees discovered their own file sync and 30.7 percent found their share apps and IM/VoIP apps.

If employees are sourcing their own applications to do their job, then IT is not delivering the right tools or a good enough service for employees, Absalom said.