It’s one week till the official launch of IT World Canada’s fifth annual Blogging Idol competition, so it’s time to shakeout your skills on the new CMS, sharpen the analytical side of your brain and wrap your head around Topic No. 1: The BYOD revolution.
If you have been even minimally exposed to tech news in the last few months, you’ll know that employees bringing their own devices onto the company network has become a front-and-centre issue.
On the one hand, employees feel they’re more productive working on the device of their choice, and the IT department hasn’t been scrambling to get it to them.
On the other hand, that’s for good reason. A wide-open field of end user devices is a support and, more importantly, infosecurity nightmare. Consider this late news from security firm Symantec Corp.: Mobile vulnerabilites increased 93 per cent in 2011 — thank you, Android — and of mobile devices lost, 96 per cent will experience a data breach. That’s some kind of exposure.
So there are a few angles to explore in Blogging Idol:
1. How does the IT department deal with the BYOD tidal wave? Ban the devices altogether from the network? Open the floodgates, since users will bring them onto the network anyway? Negotiate a list of approved devices? (We’re polling readers on which approach they favour; you can vote and see the results in real-time at this link.)
2. How credible is it to expect the IT department to support hundreds of different devices? Or sould that be a user responsibility? And if it is, does that mean the user’s proficiency at keeping his or her technology up and running become part of the employee evaluation process? (I bet that’d scare a few users back into line.)
3. What’s the best form factor or device for your style of work?
Now, I’m old-school and cranky on this issue, and I’m all for the hold-the-line position on this. You can debate me and thumbs-down me all you want; that’s part of the game.
But remember, on a broader scale, this is about community. The Blogging Idol community’s become quite close-knit and very supportive of each other. If you haven’t joined it already, come blog with the best in technology for fun and prizes. You can register at this link. If you’ve already competed in BI, your existing user name and password should still be valid.
In the spirit of the Stanley Cup playoffs, the puck drops next Monday.