Last week Plantronics held a CIO Think Tank event in New York. It was attended by a number of CIO’s from a list of well known companies who were in various stages of implementing and deploying UC and UC audio devices into their businesses.

The topics discussed were varied and wide ranging and a lot of great ideas were shared. One area that was reaffirmed for me was something we have heard of for some time now, the ‘consumerization of IT’. So what is the ‘consumerization of IT’ or BYOD, as it is sometimes referred to, and is it real?

Well Wikipedia describes ‘consumerization’ as ‘a stable neologism that describes the trend for new information technology to emerge first in the consumer market and then spread into business organizations, resulting in the convergence of the IT and consumer electronics industries, and a shift in IT innovation from large businesses to the home. For example, many people now find that their home based IT equipment and services are both more capable and less expensive than what is provided in their workplace.’

How true this statement rings. We as consumers are using, and expect to use, technology in more of our private and home life and it’s not always clear why the same functionality is not available at the office. The office has established a number of ‘barriers’ to rapidly adopting certain technologies and rightly so when you consider the intellectual property and corporate data that needs to be protected.

However, it was apparent from the discussions the CIOs had that IT is under growing pressure to support devices and capabilities that we, as everyday consumers, use. For example, devices such as tablets are blurring the traditional boundary of use of technology at the office and at home.

The same trend will apply to UC audio devices.  As IT switch-on UC voice seats and capabilities, employees will need an audio device, such as a headset. IT will therefore need a clear strategy and position on providing employees with such devices, or embracing employees bringing in their own device and expecting them to work with the companies UC platform and applications.

As an IT professional, how are you planning to address ‘consumerization of IT’ in your environment? Feel free to drop us your thoughts by leaving a reply below or send us a note at