How Long Before We’ll be Choosing our Own IT Systems?

Consumerisation in the Workplace

A few years ago, when one talked about “consumerisation of technology”, it generally meant nothing more than a trend towards disposable hardware. We expected the price of hardware to plummet to the point that it was hardly worth repairing after failure.

While this has been the case with basic PC set-ups and consumer electronic devices, ”consumerisation” has shown itself to be a far wider-reaching phenomenon; one that presents both challenges and opportunities for technical experts.

Apple has been criticised in some online forums for  neglecting its enterprise customers. Many of Apple’s critics quote the demise of the Xserve as the defining example.

I think these critics miss the point. Apple has a very clear view of the future and that future is increasingly “consumerised” IT.

Apple knows that tech savvy consumers are also employees. Consider this: many people have a better computing experience at home than they have in the office.

Our kids are growing up surrounded by technology and they use it instinctively. These are the employees of the future. Are they going to be content and productive on inferior systems? We say no. And our view is borne out by two other emerging trends: “employee choice” and “bring your own”.

Put simply these mean that employees can either choose their own computer or get paid an allowance to provide their own. If you think this is just theory, think again. It is happening right now and Apple and its partners are right at the forefront. I first saw these trends with Google, about five years ago, but now hear of new enterprises embracing these trends every week…..

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