Technology and in particular, personal devices are becoming more common. The multifunction of many gadgets makes it possible to effectively use at work and this is exactly what people are doing. Moreover, employees demand that they are allowed to bring and use their own devices at work.
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An article titled “IT’s Arab spring; Personal technology at work” talks about the changing world and the need of companies to allow workers to use their devices.
The main theme of the article is that the workplace is changing. It began some time ago and at the beginning stages of the technological “boom”, people already began using their personal devices at work.
In the modern days, iPads, iPhones, tablets, notebooks and numerous other devices, as well as software and applications are being used by a great amount of individuals.
People are so used to having the technology and “software tools” at their fingertips that when presented with something “not up to date” they become displeased and even lost (Garsten 2003, p. 4).
The social changes are inevitably influencing the workplace, so businesses and organizations must keep up with the program.
Even though not all companies have seen a major change, as it depends on the activities they are involved in, the majority have noticed a significant influence of technology and personal devices usage (‘IT’s Arab spring; Personal technology at work’ 2011).
It is obvious that many programs and applications greatly help collect, organize and store data and statistics, as well as manipulate information, represent it graphically and send it to a distant location, and this has become the need for a lot of people, employees and employers (De Jonge 2007, p. 47).
The conflict appears when people are not allowed to bring their gadgets to work and use them but they still do, and it is unwise for employers to forbid, punish or ignore this fact.
One of the problems mentioned in the article is that executives are afraid of data theft, leakage and abuse of software and programs. Historically, people have been very much controlled at work with strict limitations to their abilities to use the data and resources.
Even if there was the usage of devices, they were provided by the company itself and it purchased protective and controlling software that would standardize the actions of the employees.
This form of control might be still needed for the protection of the company’s ideas and information but it must be modernized. As change is inevitable, it would be unproductive and dangerous to deny it and completely lose control of the situation.
It is much better to accept reality and take the necessary steps and precautions, than let people do their own thing and then deal with the consequences.
It is true that there are some security concerns, as spyware and viruses are becoming abundant but there are ways, such as specific software, to counteract hacking and information theft.
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Not only the employers must make sure their data is protected, but it is also up to the individuals to be more careful when using and storing information on their devices (‘IT’s Arab spring; Personal technology at work’ 2011).
The age of technology has given new abilities and increased time and efficiency but it came at a cost of producing more “bugs”. The escalation effect is always present, this fact can be accepted and ways to deal with it can be found. It is clear that trying to stop the majority would yield failure.
De Jonge, D. 2007, Assistive technology in the workplace. St. Louis, United States: Elsevier Health Sciences, 2007.
Garsten, C. 2003, New Technologies at Work: People, Screens and Social Virtuality. New York, United States.
‘IT’s Arab spring; Personal technology at work’ 2011. The Economist, vol 401(8754), p. 10-12.