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Tuesday, June 19, 2012
Guest post by Liem Nguyen
I love my iPhone. Now before you accuse me of being a fanboy, let me just say the only Apple product, and smartphone, I own is my iPhone 4.
That's why I love it, because I only have to carry around one phone and manage a single platform for work or personal use thanks to CommVault's relatively new bring-your-own-device (BYOD) policy. CommVault's Information Services (IS) team offers employees a choice of using a company-provided smartphone or their personal phone. My smartphone has become a true converged device for everything -- calls, e-mail, calendar, Web, social media and apps.
BYOD is a hot issue among IT pros and there's a growing debate on security, data protection, compliance, work-life balance and other areas. CommVault's BYOD policy carries typical features and restrictions like requiring employees to maintain their own hardware and enable CommVault to install apps as required. As a medium-sized company in a fast-moving data management industry, we wanted to share our experiences with defining, using and maintaining a BYOD policy. This post is the first in a series of BYOD stories and we'll cover a number of topics and interview different team members on BYOD, mobility and the consumerization of IT. You'll hear from executives, lawyers, the IS team, product folks, and other BYOD users like me.
I'm relatively new to CommVault myself, having joined 2 months ago. Fresh from my previous job where I had both corporate and personal phones, I decided to simplify my life a bit and enroll in the BYOD program.
In my 18 years in business communications, I've seen practically every corporate device policy. In the 20th century, I worked for a university that didn't provide me with a cell phone, but back then the Internet was known as the World Wide Web and Mosaic was the leading browser. Five years ago, a startup company allowed me to expense smartphone costs and had a policy for defraying the cost of new phone purchases. My most recent employer, a Fortune 100 company, provided some workers with a Windows or Blackberry smartphone and allowed everyone else to access corporate email on their own device, but didn't reimburse out-of-pocket costs for data plans or support a BYOD policy. However, it did offer unified communications such as VOIP through the laptop and other remote office privileges.
The CommVault IS team supports unified communications as well as BYOD. The BYOD startup process was pretty straightforward: my manager sent an email to the IS team saying I'm eligible for the policy. A day later I received instructions from IS and the corporate policy. I digitally approved the agreement while on a business trip and my manager digitally countersigned. At the same time, I called AT&T to separate my line from my family call plan and authorized CommVault to be the new subscriber. Later on, I realized international calls had to be activated so asked IS to flip the switch for me. That was it.
BYOD isn't for everyone. Some people want a firewall between their work and personal lives. Since I'm on Twitter, Facebook and other social networks, I've been blending the two worlds for years. By choice and circumstance, juggling family commitments like swim meets and a busy travel schedule, I look for ways to simplify, simplify. Whereas I used to haul around two phones on vacation, weekends and nights plus different cables and power plugs, I now carry just the one phone and its accoutrements. I do what I need to do on the job and at the same time I can use my personal data. I also just installed a CommVault developed mobile app to get anywhere access to the files on my work laptop. (More on that later.)
The truth is I don't really love my phone. I love BYOD and the benefits it offers me as a member of the so-called mobile workforce. In our next post we'll provide a corporate perspective on BYOD and what it's like to support and increase productivity for folks on the go.
Are you a BYOD consumer at work or are you supporting a BYOD policy? Are you for or against BYOD? Hit me back with your thoughts.
Liem Nguyen is senior director of global corporate communications for CommVault.
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