Bring your own device – popularly known as “BYOD” – has revolutionized business with the hybrid use of personal phones for business purposes, a trend that many years ago would have struck CIOs as hopelessly dangerous. Yet as BYOD has become accepted, with increased security by phone makers and quickly improving best practices in mobile risk management, one aspect that is not acknowledged often enough in the newfound safety has been the role of the cloud.
Years ago, Forbes notes, the only option for IT managers was to give workers a business-supplied BlackBerry. BlackBerry makers RIM had in place a large and complex security network, one that routed every message sent from a phone through RIM’s Network Operations Center for encryption. BlackBerry rose to prominence quickly, allowing users to work anywhere, anytime and ensuring the security of data that passed through the phone. But at the time, to work from one’s own mobile device was a ludicrous idea.
Now, though, the majority of businesses, from those using to cloud-based ERP to professional services automation, do it. And it’s only growing – by 2016, most employers expect to stop providing any devices at allto employees, according to a survey by Gartner. How exactly did we get here? There are a variety of ways that most people are well aware of – mobile risk management has led to better employer protections such as data wipes and app management, and phone platform companies such as Apple now offer far better encryption, which has led to a huge decrease in BlackBerry’s significance. Yet the cloud has played a huge role, too.
Cloud will protect you
Cloud storage services have become huge in recent years, and as these have become increasingly safe and reliable, many workplaces have become sufficiently confident in the possibility of the cloud. Operations like Box and CloudStorage have greatly improved in recent years, and they have been essential to the very foundations of BYOD, according to Dermot Doherty, founder of iSpaces.
“[The cloud] creates the framework from which BYOD can function,” said Doherty, according to Forbes. “It also eases the burden from IT departments to find proper devices for their employees, manage service plans and maintain the latest software and hardware upgrades.”
The cloud, according to Doherty, provides “a safe and manageable storage place” for company information, easily accessed from any portal. With such importance to many businesses these days, every company should consider the benefits of moving to the cloud. If your company is looking to make the switch, BMI Cloud Solutions, with tools such as OpenAir and NetSuite, is ready to help.