Should you bring your own computer?

There is a piece from the BBC about whether staff should be encouraged to use their own computers for work at http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-12181570 .  The issues about the technical support, particularly, at the boundaries between an organisation’s information systems and an employee’s computer are interesting and may well get more complex with time.  I’d take issue with a couple of points though.  Many big organisations still have Windows XP as their principal operating system for PCs, and the reasons are likely have more to do with standardisation and sticking with a known, and understood, quantity than reluctance to pay for new hardware.  This is certainly the case for my (largely XP-based) employer.  And, although IT provisioning is expensive, for a big employer it’s still often cheaper to buy a computer, or even an iPad, for an employee’s use, than to increase the employee’s salary by enough for them to go out and buy the equivalent machine for themselves.  For a start, the employer can probably negotiate a more attractive price, if they are buying in bulk, and for another thing an employee would usually have to buy the computer out of taxed income.

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