The Bama Companies See Value In Virtualized Desktops

Industry: Hospitality

Founded in 1927,  The  Bama Companies,  Inc., is an innovator of wholesome bakery products, such as hand-held pies, biscuits, buns, pie shells, and pizza crust. Bama serves the Quick Service Restaurants, Fast Casual, Casual Dining, and Broadline Channels of the Foodservice Industry for the largest, most well-known restaurant chains on the planet.

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Bama had aging PC’s spread across their environment; they were experiencing high support costs, and needed an efficient and cost-effective plan to refresh their PC fleet.

In addition, they wanted to enhance the performance of their user associates Windows desktop environment.

They were also looking for ways to improve process management and deliver secure desktops to their manufacturers and outside the company to employees around the world. Finally, Bama hoped to provide users the same environment across various remote devices.


Eric Spille, Manager of Technical Services for Bama, turned to ISG Technology for assistance with this company-wide project. ISG worked out a program to move the company to Citrix XenDesktop Enterprise so that desktops could be delivered virtually to associates.

ISG conducted an initial pilot with 25 users to provide a proof-of-concept. Based on that success, Spille decided to expand the XenDesktop solution out to all users.

With ISG’s expertise, Bama installed redundant Citrix NetScaler controllers as access brokers to enhance the XenDesktop delivery and significantly improve the user interface.  Additionally, Bama’s Exchange environment is secured by the NetScalers, which handle the security and access processes now. The Netscalers keep their data safe.


Bama replaced old desktops with thin clients for an immediate cost savings and a reduction of their total cost of ownership. Refresh cycles were extended from four to eight years, which doubled the lifespan of their hardware—at half the cost.

“What made everything easier for us was the impressive level of Citrix expertise at ISG,” said Spille. “ISG knows Citrix really well. We felt very fortunate to have access to someone of that caliber. I don’t think anyone in this area even comes close.”

User experience was improved. “We can provide our employees with a Windows desktop with 12 seconds of login,” said Spille. “That’s impressive.”

Bama also experienced several incremental benefits.  “While our main goal was to put a thin client at everyone’s desk, we always struggled with patches in the past,” said Spille. “This new upgrade allowed us to provide over 300 users with a single image. That’s a huge savings and process improvement for us.”

Thanks to the Netscalers, Bama also experienced an increase in data security. Executives and sales associates who access Bama’s network remotely—regardless of device—are only viewing the data they need, without having data reside on the local device itself. Company data remains safely in the data center.

Bama was impressed with ISG’s commitment to the project. “Having a single point of contact really helped the project run smoothly. Hal Davey was truly an advocate for us. ISG asked the right questions,” said Spille. “This allowed us to proactively avoid issues, and get it right the first time.”

What happens when your employees can't get to work?

There was a time when waking up after a massive snowstorm was a joyous occasion. You’d sit down to watch TV or listen to the radio, hoping to hear your school’s name on a list of those closed for the day. There really wasn’t anything better in the winter than a snow day.

Sadly, however, those days are long gone. There are a lot of perks to being an adult, but one of the drawbacks is that having an entire office stay home for a few days when the weather gets rough simply isn’t an option.

That being said, working from home poses a lot of challenges too. Aside from having to deal with kids loudly enjoying their snow day, remotely accessing business applications can be difficult.

Forcing employees to come in during a blizzard is reckless

Many more thoughtless employers believe the answer to this problem to be simply requiring employees to get to work regardless of the weather conditions. While maintaining business continuity is incredibly important to profits, at the end of the day your employees are really the only irreplaceable part of your operation. With the U.S. Department of Transportation having found that more than 31 percent of fatal weather-related car crashes happened due to snow and ice between 2004 and 2013, requiring people to come into work under such conditions could prove to be deadly.

Don't force your workers to come in on a snowy day. Driving in the snow is dangerous.

What’s more, getting to the office in a blizzard can actually be illegal. During winter storm Jonas in January 2016, New York City and Long Island were forced to ban traveling. This included trains and city mass transit, and also driving in the tunnels and onto bridges. So not only is forcing employees to come in during a massive snow storm incredibly heartless, it could be illegal.

Working from home is a start, but there’s a catch

All this being said, your business likely can’t just stop operations for a few days while a storm blows over. Your clients and partners demand continuity, which means employees will have to work from home when the snow falls heavily. Certain business applications are absolutely vital to your company’s work, and yet quite a few of these systems may not be able to be accessed while at home. They require employees to be in the office when utilizing them, severely cutting down on what your employees can do while at home.

While this is clearly a major problem for employees that rely on mission-critical applications to get their work done, there are other logistics to be considered when implementing a work-from-home initiative in the wake of a disaster. According to the Pew Research Center, 67 percent of Americans have a broadband connection at home. While that’s still a majority, it shows a massive hurdle many companies will have to overcome when trying to maintain business continuity after a disaster. A proportion of your employees may not have high-speed Internet at home, which means their ability to stay productive is going to severely drop.

“Employers need to have a plan in place.”

Proper planning is vital

What all this means is that employers need to have a plan in place for the eventuality of workers being snowed in. This includes having a lengthy discussion with employees about their home situations, including their ability to connect to the Internet if the need for them to work from home should arise.

It also means that cloud-based disaster recovery is an absolute must for those businesses operating in colder climates. Blizzards are a very real threat to business continuity, and not being able to access your applications in the event of such a disaster could be costly to your operations.

Consult with an ISG Technology disaster recovery professional today and save yourself the headache of an adult snow day.

Which industries are going to be affected by big data?

The digital age has ushered in a level of information transfer that has never been seen before. A Cisco report predicted that in 2016 alone, the human race will generate more than a zettabyte of worldwide IP traffic. For those who don’t know much about data storage, a byte, as Tech Target describes it, can contain about a single letter of the alphabet. A zettabyte, on the other hand, is one sextillion or 10²¹ bytes. That’s a lot of letters zipping around the globe every year.

With all of this data creation, it’s not surprising that many within the field of IT are looking to analyze the massive piles of information out there to try to find patterns and trends. This is called big data analytics, and it’s become a hot topic in recent years. Until now, people hadn’t really dealt with data on the massive scale that the world is seeing now. As such, analytics experts hadn’t developed ways to sort through huge data dumps until recently.

As big data analytics becomes more popular, people are beginning to ask the question of which industries are going to be affected by this trend. While this is certainly an understandable inquiry, the real question is which industries aren’t going to be affected by big data. Just about every sector can benefit from analyzing massively produced data, and we’d like to take a look at some of the industries with the most potential.

“Those working outside IT can benefit from analytics.”


Although a lot of people like to discuss the effects big data is going to have on the tech industry, those working outside IT can also benefit from analytics if they take the time to do so. Insurance is definitely one of these sectors, as agents within the field have to sort through a lot of information in order to assess risk.

Forbes contributor Bernard Marr brought up the interesting point of how big data analytics can help insurance companies set premiums for potential clients. He discussed how many insurance agencies install tracking devices in cars and use the information gained to analyze the driving behaviors of that specific client against the mass of data collected from other clients. Essentially, big data is helping to turn setting a premium into more of a concrete procedure rather than an educated guess.

Health care

As compliance standards such as HIPAA begin to accept more digital means of transmitting patient information, health care is increasingly seeing the benefits of big data analytics. Taking massive quantities of information and forming them into workable understandings of the current health landscape is going to be a critical part of the industry’s growth in the coming years.

One of the biggest areas with potential for big data analytics has to be the adoption of smartphones – and to a lesser extent wearables – into the general populace. About 68 percent of Americans currently own a smartphone, according to the Pew Research Center, which means a majority of U.S. residents are taking advantage of the ability to have a computer in their pocket.

These handy devices have a plethora of everyday uses, but one of the ways people are using them currently is to track their exercise and dieting habits. The number of apps that follow your activity levels are nearly innumerable, and all of them are gold mines when it comes to big data analytics.

Big data has serious implications within the health care industry. Doctors can seriously benefit from an analysis of health care data.

Imagine if doctors working on a cure for diabetes could see the dietary and exercising habits of the average diabetic. Years ago this would have meant intense research, followed by an even longer amount of time dissecting the results. Now, with modern technology and big data analytics, it is possible for diabetics to simply track their own activities via smartphones and upload that information straight to the doctor’s data storage method. Combining these specific studies with the millions of data points already created by diabetics using existing tracking applications like Glucose Buddy – an app that keeps a log of the food intake and activity levels of diabetics – could potentially allow for a breakthrough in the field.

Social networking

Although industries outside the tech field can obviously benefit from big data analytics, those within it are seeing endless possibilities for this unprecedented wealth of information. One of the most prominent areas would be social networking sites, which are known for their data storage habits when it comes to user information. Facebook is already using the comments and articles you like on the site to influence the ads you see, but many within the industry think these sites can go even further.

In fact, a recent study from Stanford showed that big data analytics has the potential to understand your personality better than your friends do. The study, which had a computer analyze what kinds of pictures and statuses a person liked on his Facebook page, attempted to find out how well a computer can get to know you personally. What they found was remarkable:

“Forget targeted ads.”

A computer, given only information from Facebook to match up against a personality inventory test of the participant, was able to guess personality patterns better than the participant’s friends and family. While this certainly has quite a lot of implications for sociology and psychology, this study shows the truly limitless power of big data analytics on social networking sites. Forget targeted ads; a properly calibrated machine is now able to comprehend the deepest workings of the human mind.

Although that may sound like something straight out of a dystopian novel, being able to fully understand the personality of an individual is immensely helpful in areas like criminology. Tens of thousands of felons could have their personalities tested in a much shorter time than one-on-one interviews, allowing for law enforcement officials to truly map out the mind of a criminal and discover preventative measures for the future.

The world is in the exploratory stages of big data analytics right now, and it’s really hard to know what’s going to happen next. That being said, it’s pretty obvious analyzing huge amounts of information could have serious benefits for multiple industries. Knowledge is always necessary for a society’s growth, and big data has the power to give people a level of understanding that has never been seen before.

ISG Technology: Who we are

We’ve spent a lot of time on this blog discussing what ISG’s services can do for you, as well as what kinds of specific problems we can fix. We’ve even done an opinion piece here and there about current trends within IT. What we haven’t done so far is explain what kind of a company we are on a more personal level.

As a modern company, it’s really important to us that you not only understand what we do, but who we are. In an effort to fully introduce ourselves to you, we’d like to explain the three guiding principles that drive our company’s innovation each and every day: people, technology and service.

“People come first.”


When it comes to business, even the business of technology and machines, people come first. When we’re considering initiating a business relationship with a company, the first thing we do is try to fully understand the people who work there.

The reason we do this is simple: We can’t figure out how to fix your problem if we don’t know anything about who you are and what you need from us.

For the average managed services provider, solving an issue starts with what the MSP can do to fix the problem, followed by how the company is specifically going to solve it and finally finishing with why that particular situation was a problem in the first place. While this gets the job done most of the time, we at ISG think these companies have it backwards.

We begin our problem analysis by first figuring out why this obstacle is in your way. Starting here works better because it allows us to fully understand all aspects of your particular situation, without coming in with any preconceived notions. After this, we begin to work on how we’re going to fix the problem, followed by a full and detailed investigation into what the actual problem is.

What this means is that you can rest assured ISG will solve the problem you’re actually having, and not the one you think you’re experiencing. While you may think you need simple malware removal – something ISG could easily provide for you – it may turn out that you actually need comprehensive firewall protection services. By figuring out why a situation is a problem for you first, we can diagnose the root cause of your dilemma and provide a solution based on your company’s specific needs.


Technology is evolving at a truly remarkable rate. The Pew Research Center found that in 2015, about 68 percent of American adults owned a smartphone. In 2011, that number was closer to 35 percent. In four short years, smartphone usage had almost doubled, showing how fully technology has been integrated into our everyday lives.

Technology is everywhere, and with around 84 percent of your American clients identifying as Internet users, being on the forefront of this revolution is absolutely vital to stay profitable. That being said, keeping up with the latest and greatest in technological innovation is extremely hard when you’re trying to run a business.

To anyone working outside of IT, something like server virtualization can sound like magic. Just wrapping your head around the concept of fitting multiple, virtual machines on a single server can be impossible if you don’t understand the finely tuned technology behind it.

Thankfully, our team of highly trained tech wizards can make this magically complex technology simple and easy to comprehend. With ISG, you can rest assured that you’re getting the technology your business needs, from experts who truly understand it.

ISG tech experts are extremely knowledgeable. Our tech wizards can help bring the magic of modern technology to your business.


Although you obviously want a cursory understanding of the technology you’re investing in, we know that you want IT solutions to just work. You don’t want your business goals to be hampered by constantly having to figure out what’s going wrong with the services provided to you, and as such, ISG has always been focused on providing a quality service to all of our clients.

Whether it’s disaster recovery services, or even online backup of your mission-critical data, we value giving the businesses we work with the best product we can. Investing in ISG is investing in consistency, and nothing is more important to us than making sure your IT problems get solved as efficiently and as effectively as possible.

If you’d like to learn how ISG can help bring your business to the next level, make sure to check out the list of managed services we offer on our homepage.

Join the ISG Technology Team

3 tips for increased BYOD security

The benefits of allowing employees to bring their own devices to work are pretty clear. A study conducted by Pew Research Center earlier this year found that 64 percent of American adults own a smartphone, which means a vast majority of the workforce already has the hardware your company needs to conduct business. This means less of a financial burden on you company for hardware procurement, while also allowing employees to use the devices they know and love.

But there is a dark side to BYOD.

The reason many workplaces are hesitant to fall in line with the BYOD revolution is the security risks it typically entails. Allowing people to blend their home life and work life in a single device can be dangerous. However, by following basic security protocols, BYOD can be a viable option.

To that end, we’ve compiled this list of three security tips to make sure your company benefits from all BYOD has to offer without falling victim to the security risks:

1. Have a well-defined list of do’s and don’ts: Any company even remotely considering enacting a BYOD policy needs to sit down and have a long discussion about the definition of acceptable behavior on a personal device used for work purposes. Employees will be used to doing as they please on their own devices, which is perfectly fine when these devices don’t have company data on them.

The problems begin to arise when employees forget the importance of the work information stored on their devices. If given the opportunity to work from their own devices, employees will invariably make some bad decisions in terms of data security. All it takes is a worker clicking one wrong link to put all of your company’s data at risk. It’s vital that employees recognize the importance of proper device usage, and it’s why they should also be included in the creation of this list of rules.

2. Mandate proper device security: This tip sounds like it should just be a part of the first, or even something that should be left to common sense. Sadly, quite a lot of Americans simply don’t value the security of their devices. A study conducted by Consumer Reports last year found that around 34 percent of Americans take no security measures whatsoever to keep their phone safe.

This means that more than a third of your employees don’t even use a password to protect their own data, a troubling statistic if you’re attempting to implement a BYOD policy. When sitting down with employees to talk about the list of do’s and don’ts, you’ll need to have a separate discussion concerning safety practices such as setting up a complex password to gain access to the device.

3. Prepare for the eventuality of lost device: Notice that this tip doesn’t say “Prepare for the possibility of a lost device.” This is because if you intend to cash in on all of the benefits of a BYOD policy, you’re going to have to accept the risk that one of your employees will eventually lose a device with work information on it. The same Consumer Reports study found that in 2013 alone, 4.5 million devices were either lost or stolen.

But don’t let this statistic get you down about the advantages of BYOD. Your company can absolutely benefit from not having to constantly upgrade hardware, as long as you take the necessary precautions. This is why anyone wishing to implement a BYOD policy should contact the experts at ISG Technology. Not only can they help you set up your list of do’s and don’ts, they can also help protect your company data through device encryption, taking the headache out of employees losing hardware or not taking the proper precautions.

IT restructuring reduces governmental spending

A few years ago, the federal government realized that there was a lot of inefficiency within agencies in terms of their IT infrastructure. So, in 2010, the Office of Management and Budget began an effort to restructure the IT needs of governmental workplaces to try to cut down on redundancies and unnecessary IT spending.

After years of working on the problem, the OMB has made some sizeable cost reductions. The Government Accountability Office, charged with creating a report on the OMB's IT restructure, found that this effort resulted in $3.6 billion in cost savings and avoidances between 2011 and 2014. 

A closer look
Although 22 out of the 27 agencies that the OMB gave restructuring requirements to did not fully meet those benchmarks, overall, quite a lot of money was saved through IT reform. In terms of newer technology being implemented within the OMB's restructuring plans, perhaps the most interesting of these savings came from virtualization

Specifically, the Department of Defense saved $260.35 million between the fiscal years of 2011 and 2014 by operating system reductions and virtualization, thereby cutting down on staff and facilities needed to run their operation. Virtualization has been known to allow for these kinds of savings, as it gives organizations the unique opportunity to consolidate their hardware needs without dramatically affecting workloads and end-user functionality. 

The DoD was not the only agency to see savings through virtualization, either. The Department of Commerce also reported that since it had moved its IT infrastructure to a virtualized space, it had seen a combined cost avoidance of around $11.8 million. 

What this means for your company
Even though government agencies are different in a lot of way from the average private sector business, the fact still remains that IT restructuring is a great way to cut both inefficiency and spending in the workplace.

Basically, what the GAO's report showed is that many organizations are not as efficient as they could be with their IT needs. It also argued for the importance of virtualization as a tool to reduce hardware and facility needs, as shown through the massive savings garnered by both the DoD and DoC. 

For this reason, every company that wants to cut down its current IT expenses should absolutely consider virtualization through ISG Technology. Not only do we provide server virtualization, a great way to cut down on hardware spending, ISG Technology also works with companies to implement desktop virtualization plans. With ISG Tech and virtualization, expect to see costs go down and efficiency go up.

How hyperconverged infrastructure can benefit remote branches

Businesses that are experiencing a period of rapid expansion may seem like they have it made, but there is a downside to that growth. When enterprises scale up and build out their corporate footprint, they will likely be faced with numerous challenges supporting satellite offices and remote branches. Relying on legacy IT assets to provide the compute, storage and network resources required by additional company locations can be a costly decision. However, business leaders can find some relief in these situations by considering a shift to hyperconverged infrastructure and changing the way enterprise operations are scaled and expanded.

For years, IT environments have been characterized by system silos. Core assets such as storage and compute resources have traditionally been handled separately. What hyperconverged infrastructure does is condense a large percentage of these assets into a single bundle of hardware and software. As TechTarget noted, organizations can then build out these systems by integrating additional nodes when needed. With this arrangement, maintenance teams can avoid many of the everyday headaches experienced while overseeing IT infrastructure on an enterprise scale.

"Under the converged infrastructure approach, a vendor provides a pre-configured bundle of hardware and software in a single chassis with the goal of minimizing compatibility issues and simplifying management," TechTarget stated.

Scale up operations with ease
One of the main benefits here for enterprises is the ability to expand IT resource needs in a simple and efficient fashion. cited the easy scalability of hyperconverged infrastructure as one of the approach's top selling points, comparing the addition of nodes to erecting a structure with LEGO blocks. The authors noted that this method allows businesses to easily build out their IT assets on an as-needed basis. This makes enterprise expansion a much less bitter of a pill to swallow for business leaders as scaling up to support remote branches and satellite offices is not quite as arduous a task as it was in the past.

Hyperconverged infrastructure enables IT teams to manage enterprise assets from a central location.Hyperconverged infrastructure enables IT teams to manage enterprise assets from a central location.

Lower investment, management costs
Due to this setup of adding onto existing infrastructure whenever needed, hyperconverged infrastructure allows for enterprise expansion to occur at a lower up-front cost. As explained, this approach reduces the "step size" required to make a leap in terms of infrastructure scope and maturity.

"The bigger the step size, the longer it takes to fully utilize new resources added through the expansion," stated. "A smaller step size results in a far more efficient use of resources. As new resources are required, it's easy to add nodes to a hyperconverged infrastructure."

This approach to IT infrastructure and management further lowers costs by enabling businesses to support critical systems with commodity hardware. Because many core processes are handled at the software level within hyperconverged infrastructure, organizations do not need to consistently upgrade their data center hardware with the most advanced equipment available. In most cases, commodity x86 hardware will be sufficient to keep everything running smoothly while also allowing for rapid enterprise expansion.

"Commodity x86 hardware will be sufficient to keep everything running smoothly."

Reduce IT challenges
It's not just the bookkeepers and executives who will see the appeal of embracing hyperconverged infrastructure. For IT members, there is a lot to like here, especially when working with multiple sites and remote offices. Because this setup condenses and centralizes IT infrastructure, teams tasked with overseeing that equipment and handling any maintenance needs will have far fewer headaches to deal with.

Jointly developed by and ActualTech Media, the "2015 State of Hyperconverged Infrastructure Market Report" shed light on the challenges that enterprise IT staff regularly face. The mix of on-premises and off-premises assets to manage, the ever-escalating virtualization and disaster recovery needs along with the growing complexity of today's data center environments have all made IT work incredibly challenging within large businesses. Hyperconvergence addresses these difficulties by providing IT teams with a single resource pool to draw from, allowing them to easily maintain a sprawling enterprise-scale system from a central location.

Building out a business's footprint can present new opportunities for market growth and tapping into additional revenue streams. However, the hit in CAPEX and OPEX can make some enterprise leaders wary of developing remote branches. Hyperconverged infrastructure offers a way to reduce the cost and complexity of such projects, enabling organizations to take more aggressive action within their industries and stake out new territory when the moment arises.

As enterprises become larger, they will need to address the headaches that come part and parcel with any organizational growth. Hyperconvergence provides a way to reduce or eliminate those challenges, allowing for greater heights of success.

Cloud infrastructure market showing steady growth

The cloud Infrastructure-as-a-Service market is growing at an accelerated rate, with providers bringing in increased revenue, according to IT analyst firm Gartner.

A recent Gartner report found that global spending on cloud IaaS solutions will reach almost $16.5 billion in 2015, an increase of more than 32 percent from last year. As more businesses move an increasing number of workloads to the cloud, the market is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 29 percent through 2019.

"10% of CIOs consider cloud IaaS their default infrastructure option."

Last year the absolute growth of public IaaS workloads surpassed on-premises workload growth of any type for the first time, the Gartner report revealed. According to a survey of CIOs conducted by Gartner, cloud IaaS is considered an infrastructure option by 83 percent of CIOs and 10 percent already deem it their default choice.

This growth in the IaaS market is also causing a consolidation of service providers, according to Gartner vice president and analyst Lydia Leong. The market is rapidly revolving around a small number of trusted service providers, so IT buyers will need to select their vendors carefully.

"We urge buyers to be extremely cautious when selecting providers; ask specific and detailed questions about the provider's roadmap for the service, and seek contractual commitments that do not permit the provider to modify substantially or to discontinue the offering without at least 12 months' notice," said Leong.

The cloud IaaS market is growing and providers are consolidating.The cloud IaaS market is growing and providers are consolidating.

IaaS proves a versatile tool
Cloud IaaS solutions can be put to work for practically any use case that can reasonably be hosted on virtual servers, but the most common are development and testing environments, high performance computers and batch processing, Web-based apps and non-critical internal business applications. Gartner suggested that businesses adopting a cloud IaaS solution operate in two essential modes, otherwise known as bimodal IT. This allows them to keep sight of what is needed to maintain IT operations while at the same time innovating with new, digital possibilities.

"Cloud IaaS can now be used to run most workloads, although not every provider can run every type of workload well," said Leong. "Cloud IaaS is not a commodity. Providers vary significantly in their features, performance, cost and business terms. Although in theory, cloud IaaS has very little lock-in, in truth, cloud IaaS is not merely a matter of hardware rental, but an entire data center ecosystem as a service. The more you use its management capabilities, the more value you will receive from the offering, but the more you will be tied to that particular service offering."

When first starting, most organizations deploy cloud IaaS for mode 2, which are agile IT projects that may be on the periphery of the organization's IT needs but can still have a major impact for the business. As the company becomes more comfortable with its use of IaaS over time, some organizations may choose to use it in Mode 1, for traditional IT projects.

As time goes on, many enterprises, especially those in the mid-market, will likely migrate away from operating their own computing facilities and instead host their workloads in a data center run by a service provider and rely primarily on infrastructure in the cloud.

What to know about letting employees bring devices from home

The bring-your-own-device movement has been getting serious traction lately, as the amount of technology owned by employees continues to go up. Whether it be their personal phone, tablet or even laptop, people really seem to like the idea of having their own tech at work. And this recent BYOD trend doesn't seem to be slowing down. In fact, research firm Gartner said approximately 70 percent of mobile workers will be using their own smart devices rather than those given to them by their company by 2018. With those kinds of numbers, it's no wonder that many companies are gearing up for the BYOD revolution. 

BYOD: The risks and rewards
Just like every trend, there are positives and negatives to letting employees bring their own electronics to work. The simplest and perhaps the most obvious of the positives is that people like their own devices. Employees don't just grab the first phone or computer that catches their eye. They take enormous amounts of time and energy to figure out what device is right for them. There is a multitude of things a device can offer someone, and allowing employees to tailor their work devices to their own wants and needs is certainly a benefit to both productivity and employee morale

Another positive point to consider with BYOD is the fact that employees upgrade their own devices at a much more rapid pace than their employers. According to eMarketer, about 54 percent of smartphone users plan to buy a new device within the next 12 months. Any company attempting to keep their own hardware this current would most certainly run itself into the ground. It's best to let employees worry about having the most current device.

Despite the many positives to BYOD, there are also some risks every company should consider. The biggest problem a company implementing a BYOD plan is likely to run into is the fact that it is extremely hard to tell employees what they can and can't do with their own devices. People get used to surfing the Web on their personal laptops, and while this is fine if the device is strictly for personal use, it becomes a problem when the device is brought into the office. It's very easy to tell an employee what they can and can't do with company-owned property, but it becomes a little harder when the employees own those devices. Any company considering BYOD should express these concerns with employees if they wish to keep productivity at peak levels. 

Aside from productivity, there is also a sizeable security risk from employees using BYOD hardware like they would at home. Something as simple as an employee downloading apps on their phone allows third-party access to company data. This is due to the relative simplicity of developing mobile viruses and can lead to the necessity of malware removal. Again, companies considering letting employees bring their own devices into work need to instruct these people in the correct use of devices. 

But companies shouldn't let the risks scare them away. With help from BYOD experts like ISG Technology, allowing employees to bring their own equipment can have a multitude of benefits without any downsides.