Consumerisation of IT adoption increases: Survey

Majority of respondents adapting IT infrastructure to allow personal devices despite security concerns

A new global survey has claimed that the consumerisation of IT is becoming more of a priority for Australian enterprises.

The survey was conducted for IT services company Avanade and had 605 respondents, including 45 from Australia.

According to the results, 51 per cent of Australian respondents cited that the growing use of employee-owned technology was a top priority in their organisation while 62 per cent indicated that they plan to make new investments to support personal computing technology within the next 12 months.

Eighty-two per cent of Australian executives noted that employees are using their personal devices for business purposes.

In addition, 67 per cent of respondents indicated they are now adapting their IT infrastructure to accommodate employees' personal devices, rather than restricting their use.

The majority (73 per cent) believe the workplace will consist almost entirely of personal computing devices within the next 13 years.

Commenting on the results, Sydney-based Copyright Agency chief information officer, Jacob Dudzinski, said he was surprised by this statistic.

“If you look at the increase of contract workers, to some extent that might bring more devices into the workplace but I don’t think the percentages will be as high as they’ve stated there.”

While Copyright Agency has not implemented consumerisation of IT yet, Dudzinski said it was happening despite not having a policy in place.

“We’re already seeing employees bringing devices in, ranging from smartphones to Cloud applications,” he said.

“We’re playing a combination of catch-up and putting in place policies and infrastructures that support it.”

Dudzinski added that security should be a concern when it came to allowing personal devices at work, especially as the survey found 42 per cent of Australian IT leaders had experienced a security breach as a result of personal technologies entering the enterprise.

“There are challenges with any data that is held on a device and also internally, whereby employees may have applications on those devices that can be a threat to internal security,” he said.

“The best way CIOs can prepare themselves is through traditional infrastructure and security development inside the IT function so these devices can access the corporate network securely."

To combat security concerns, respondents indicated they will be investing in developing policy and enforcement programs (38 per cent) and training for all staff (31 per cent).

Dudzinski's final piece of advice for CIOs was not to ignore the consumerisation of IT.

“At the end of the day, it is going to happen so you’re better off putting in place tools that allow it to happen in a way that works both for the organisation and the employee,” he said.

Follow Hamish Barwick on Twitter: @HamishBarwick

Follow CIO Australia on Twitter: @CIO_Australia

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