Bosses Clueless on Technology Usage


by Samuel Greengard

Employers don't have an accurate understanding of what and how many consumer technologies their employees are using in the workplace, says a recent study conducted by Unisys and IDC. There's a huge disconnect between what IT executives think is going on and what's actually happening.

The study found that workers are using smartphones, laptops and mobile phones in the workplace at nearly twice the rate reported by employers. Moreover, the typical iWorker already reports using an average of four consumer devices and multiple third party applications in the course of their day.

A few more tidbits:

· * A whopping 69 percent of iWorkers say they can access non-work-related websites, while only 44 percent of their employers report this to be the case.

· * More than half (52 percent) of iWorkers say they can store personal data and files on company resources, while only 37 percent of employers say this is the case.

· * 95 percent of iWorkers report that they use at least one self-purchased device for work.

Here's the really amazing part: despite this widespread usage, fewer than half of employers actually allow iWorkers to access enterprise applications via smartphones.

The upshot? "Businesses are not adequately prepared for this consumer-powered revolution in IT," the report concludes. "The enterprise network is no longer point to point--it's not a connection from a datacenter to a specific desktop--but ends with the user, wherever they are. This is a fundamental change in mindset yet many companies lack the policies, infrastructure or security to address this change."

It's time to get more consumed by consumerization.