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Four out of ten firms to stop providing devices to workers by 2016

Almost four in ten enterprises will expect to stop providing devices to workers by 2016, according to research firm Gartner.

Almost four in ten enterprises expect to stop providing devices to workers by 2016, according to research firm Gartner.

Following a global survey of chief information officers (CIOs) the research firm found that 38 per cent of companies expect to stop providing devices to employees over the next three years, as bring your own device (BYOD) programmes continue to become commonplace.

“BYOD strategies are the most radical change to the economics and the culture of client computing in business in decades,” said David Willis, vice president and distinguished analyst at Gartner. “The benefits of BYOD include creating new mobile workforce opportunities, increasing employee satisfaction, and reducing or avoiding costs.

He added that the business case for BYOD still needs to be better evaluated and argued that most leaders do not understand the benefits.

“If you are offering BYOD, take advantage of the opportunity to show the rest of the organisation the benefits it will bring to them and to the business,” counselled Willis.

According to Gartner, roughly half of BYOD programs provide a partial reimbursement, and full reimbursement for all costs will become rare. The research firm believes that due to mass market smartphone adoption with the steady declines in operator fees, employers will gradually reduce their subsidies and as the number of workers using mobile devices expands, the number of employees who receive no subsidy at all will rise.

“The enterprise should subsidise only the service plan on a smartphone,” said Willis. “What happens if you buy a device for an employee and they leave the job a month later? How are you going to settle up? Better to keep it simple. The employee owns the device, and the company helps to cover usage costs.”

Gartner also found that while BYOD is occurring in companies and governments of all sizes, it is most prevalent in midsize and large organizations ($500m to $5bn in revenue, with 2,500 to 5,000 employees). Adoption varies widely across the globe. Companies in the United States are twice as likely to allow BYOD as those in Europe.

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