I read the tech press not for information, but for comic relief. In fact, they should use Comic Sans font on their blogs just to emphasize the point. The sheer inanity of it all led me to post last month the top ten most annoying memes in the startup scene, but I clearly could have gone on….
Some companies have even surrendered to what is being called the consumerization of I.T. At Kraft Foods, the I.T. department’s involvement in choosing technology for employees is limited to handing out a stipend. Employees use the money to buy whatever laptop they want from Best Buy, Amazon.com or the local Apple store.
“We heard from people saying, ‘How come I have better equipment at home?’ ” said Mike Cunningham, chief technology officer for Kraft Foods. “We said, hey, we can address that.”
Encouraging employees to buy their own laptops, or bring their mobile phones and iPads from home, is gaining traction in the workplace. A survey published on Thursday by Forrester Research found that 48 percent of information workers buy smartphones for work without considering what their I.T. department supports. By being more flexible, companies are hoping that workers will be more comfortable with their devices and therefore more productive.
“Bring your own device” policies, as they are called, are also shifting the balance of power among electronics makers. Manufacturers good at selling to consumers are increasingly gaining the upper hand, while those focused on bulk corporate sales are slipping.