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Why it's important to embrace bring your own

Remember the days when work stopped once you left the office? Today’s trend of Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) and Bring Your Own everything (BYOX) is merging the boundaries between personal and professional use and was the subject of a panel discussion at Enterprise Apps World that featured transportation and logistics management firm BDP International. Here Angela Yochem, Global Chief Information Officer of the company explains what she feels about the trend?

The bring your own trend offers huge challenges for businesses who want to control their business environments – what are the main challenges CIOs have to be aware of and how can they tackle them?

“Certainly, information protection and device diversification create management challenges for IT leaders. However, as BYOX is becoming mainstream, the industry has developed tools and created venues -- such as Enterprise Apps World -- to share effective operations practices and management policies.

The challenges I'm currently focused on are related to the implications and opportunities presented by constant connectedness, rich information access and ubiquitous pocket (or smaller) sized computing power.

As the workplace shifts from place to connection, workforce shifts from coworkers to collaborators, and organizations shift from entities to ecosystems, we need to anticipate and consider cascading changes to business processes, information freshness, asset ownership and our information technology estates. 

Too often, IT departments view BYOX in isolation, as a technology set to be managed. In my experience, encouraging, or enabling, BYOX is only the beginning of a digital transformation journey.”

Given security risks etc how can businesses actually embrace the bring your own trend and make it work for them and their employees?

“Not discounting the seriousness of security risk, we need to be careful to not confine our risk assessment to security. We also need to consider the future risks posed by banning BYOX, such as deterring our ability to attract and retain next generation talent, missing out on real world adoption trends, as demonstrated by workers, and limiting our employees' digital experience, which inadvertently narrows their perspective when creating customer directed apps and interactions.”

What is the biggest issue the enterprise apps arena is facing currently?

Focus. For years, enterprise application development was synonymous with use case deep, feature rich, screen full software. Apps for the enterprise, on the other hand, are purpose built for the task at hand. Feature bloat and screen clutter sink app adoption.

Successful enterprise apps start with a design perspective: mobile first or mobile responsive. Each embraces the constraints of screen size and communication delays, resulting in a positive simplicity.

Additionally -- and this is a big challenge -- backend resources need to be architected, or retrofitted to perform narrower slices of logic and retrieve more specific sets of data. Strategies include service-orientation, micro-services and API creation/exposure.

Essentially, we need to strengthen our design capability, from identifying and solving the correct problem, to user interaction through backend resource demarcation and performance.

Enterprise Apps World, held in London 17-18 June, focussed heavily on the bring your own trend. It will be explored further at Apps World Europe at London's Excel from 12-13 November. Super early bird discounts are available if you book before 8 July.

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