In response to the growing prevalence of mobile devices in our workforce, the Information Technology Division (ITD) for the Commonwealth has introduced its Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) policy. BYOD means that employees can use their personal phones to connect to computing resources while at work or off-site, rather than being required to utilize a state-owned mobile device.
Many individuals have personal and professional lives which are both equally hectic. BYOD eliminates the need to carry two devices and having all their information flow into and out of one device can make information management much easier!
The BYOD trend is not unique to the Commonwealth. In a survey performed at the May 2013 Interop conference, 95% of the survey respondents indicated that their organizations have embraced BYOD, however, only one-third of these companies have BYOD policies in place. Fortunately, the Commonwealth has created a formal BYOD policy which our employees are already leveraging.
Kevin Prefontaine, Enterprise Infrastructure Architect at ITD, was one of the policy’s first users. “BYOD is by far a much easier way to manage my devices. When doing large scale work I need to use a laptop; however, using my personal mobile device via BYOD really helps me stay on point with things as they are happening.”
The Commonwealth’s BYOD user policy agreement is extensive, yet straightforward. Gillian Lockwood, Director of Enterprise Policy & Architecture at ITD, points out the importance of access control policy and standards: When using your personal device in lieu of a Commonwealth-issued device you will need to abide by the Commonwealth’s device rules when accessing Commonwealth data via your own phone.
Of course, each BYOD user must read and understand the privacy and security requirements before proceeding. However, as Kevin points out, “As long as you understand the implications, I find it to be a work advantage. Certainly for me, I find if you have a hectic personal and professional situation it is definitely something that is very helpful in keeping pace with the various things which come up.”
If you are a Commonwealth employee and want to learn more about ITD’s BYOD policy, click here. Then, if you think it’s for you, contact your agency’s CIO to make the switch!
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