Consumers today have plenty of choice when it comes to smartphones, and as the technology spills over into their professional lives, businesses are faced with the challenge of managing their use in the workplace. That is, taking advantage of the potential benefits they bring without sacrificing data security and policy compliance.

This is the result of what many refer to as the “consumerization of IT”. But interestingly enough, while the same challenges apply when it comes to tablets, a survey conducted by Alfresco among its customer and prospect network in several key industries suggest that adoption is happening a bit differently: IT departments are proactively looking for ways to support tablet computing, rather than resisting change, to reshape how and where employees work. Here are a few takeaways from the survey:

  • IT departments are leading tablet adoption: Roughly 56% of respondents were from IT with over 90% of respondents reported having used tablet devices and over 75% have used tablets for work purposes.
  • About 89% reported moderate to constant use for web browsing and 82% for email.
  • 57% use smartphones in casual mobile contexts, such as lunch meetings (only 34% for tablets) and 51% (over 43% for tablets) in coffee shops. However, tablets actually overtake PC usage at home (48% vs. 46%), pull ahead during business meetings (55% vs. 24%) and dominate at conferences (59% vs. 13%).
  • A 3-screen reality is coming true. Tablets aren’t replacing either smartphones or laptops, but laptops are increasingly tethered to the desk, while tablets are the tool of choice for getting work done on the go.
  • While tablet adoption clearly is gaining ground in the enterprise, Alfresco found that a stunning amount of companies are not providing official security policies for BYOD.

Companies are thinking more strategically about the role of tablets in business productivity and many are already experiencing the benefits of integrating their use within a regulated enterprise environment.

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