IT Urged to Figure Out Mobile Work Policies

Though young workers are putting greater pressure than ever on IT staffers to allow them to use their own mobile devices on the job, a new survey from Citrix provides some startling insight into just how clueless those departments can be.

While some 25 percent of companies already support the use of such devices in the workplace and many benefit from increased productivity as employees can work anywhere, anytime from any device, the new technologies pose an overwhelming challenge for some firms.

Among the findings from the U.S. :

  • 62 percent of businesses surveyed have no controls in place to manage these devices.
  • 45 percent of IT managers are unaware of all the devices being used.
  • 53 percent of businesses cite productivity improvements of more than 10 percent attributed to  the use of personal devices at work; 16 percent report increases of more than 30 percent.
  • 32 percent of respondents were most concerned about the security of applications and documents downloaded onto personal devices.
  • 23 percent were concerned about remote access to the corporate network through personal devices.

More than 1,100 senior executives and IT managers in Australia, France, Germany, the U.K., and the U.S. were polled between May and August 2011.

Ultimately, not embracing the new devices may be to a business’s peril in these challenging economic times.

“You could resist it and say no and miss out on great opportunities,” says Tom Gillis, vice president and general manager of the security technology business unit at Cisco. He urges IT departments of all sizes to get ahead of the trend. He should know: By allowing personal devices, Cisco says it has lowered costs by an estimated 25 percent.

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