Avoid Becoming an IT Neanderthal
Spending my summer days reading way too much about current tech trends I get the sense that we as IT professionals are often portrayed as a bunch of Neanderthal cavemen (and cavewomen) who’d prefer to rip the heads off pigeons (metaphorically speaking of course) rather than accept the powerful tide of change that is upon us.
I mean, come on! Most of us get it, OK?! Some of us may be slower to accept technological changes than others but I think the majority of us understand that if we don’t jump on the bandwagon and embrace things like BYOD and cloud technology, we are going to be left in the primordial dust.
I read Mike Elgan’s recent article in Forbes, Why You Can’t Fight BYOD, where he asserts that employee mentality has changed over the years to the point that today, smartphones are not considered tools but rather an extension of the person, “augmented humans”. Additionally, BYOD devices are personal and will continue to get more personal with the development of wearable computing devices such as Google Glass and smartwatches being developed by Apple, Samsung and the like.
In this reality, there are a few ideas I’d like to share that have helped my IT team:
- Embrace change, don’t be afraid of it. The more you can educate yourself and your team about what’s being introduced in the market and how technologies are advancing, the better off you’ll be and the more knowledge you’ll have when dealing with the potential risks and adverse effects of the technologies.
- Be flexible. If it’s security threats you’re worried about, that makes sense, but don’t let it lead you to take draconian measures. In the case of BYOD, not all devices pose the same risks. Asses the risk of different devices and focus on the higher risk ones. Good MDM solutions offer you the ability to respond to different threats in different ways without taking drastic measures across the board.
- Transparency is your best friend. Setting clear IT policies that are then shared with users is your best bet. The more that your users understand about why your policies are necessary and the thought that went into them, the more likely they will be to adhere to them.
In my mind, the crucial thing for us to remember is that ultimately, these technologies will help make our businesses more efficient and flexible, not to mention, make our lives a lot easier. If we come at it from that perspective, then we will find ways to make it work and integrate new technologies into our IT structure as they come up, even if there are initial growing pains.
Posted by Joe the IT Guy