Now, it's BYOA (bring your own application)

Now, it's BYOA (bring your own application)

Summary: Three reasons BYOA may pay off for organizations.


The IT consumerization trend that brought us BYOD (bring your own device) trend will soon be extending to BYOA, or bring your own application.  

Keyboard Photo by Joe McKendrick

That's the prediction of Edwin Schouten, who points out that along with doing a lot of their work on their own smartphones, tablets or laptops, employees also will soon be selecting the application they are most comfortable with. "This is the whole 'app' culture nowadays," he points out. "Although everyone has a preference, which app you use does not matter, as long as it gets the job done."

Actually, BYOA first perculated in the 1980s, with the introduction of spreadsheets -- which many financial people brought into the workplace to crunch numbers. Now, with the app stores and cloud, there are zillions of BYOA possibilities.

Schouten predicts that BYOA is financially viable for organizations as well, for the following reasons:

  • Applications are increasingly consumed on a pay-for-use basis. "You will not pay double because half of your customers use application A, and the other half use B."
  • Training requirements are reduced. "In the merger scenario, no additional effort has to be put in educating users on being able to use the single 'enterprise-selected' application."
  • Integration as a Service and standardized cloud APIs are evolving. Many of these capabilities are being offered right out of the box, or via a software appliance.

Of course, just as is the case with BYOD, eventually, the IT department ends up having to get involved. BYOD and BYOA may look like time-saving end-runs around IT, and may be at first, but guess who ends up having to support the products?  Here's where governance -- in which the business and IT lay down guidelines about what is acceptable -- can ease the transition.

(Photo: Joe McKendrick.)

Topics: Apps, Software Development

Kick off your day with ZDNet's daily email newsletter. It's the freshest tech news and opinion, served hot. Get it.


Log in or register to join the discussion
  • sigh . . .

    "The IT consumerization trend that brought us BYOD (bring your own device) trend"

    It's not really a trend. It helps some businesses, hurts others. Highly c-i-r-c-u-m-s-t-a-n-t-i-a-l (Hello profanity filter, FIX PLEASE!), and in places where it makes sense, has been happening long before the term was coined and this false "trend" was invented.

    "Actually, BYOA first perculated in the 1980s, with the introduction of spreadsheets -- which many financial people brought into the workplace to crunch numbers."

    Yet now I'll have to endure ZDNet calling it a "trend" for at least a year.

    Meh, maybe I'll just subscribe to Ars and forget ZDNet. ZDNet's worship of the latest buzzword is beyond ridiculous.
    • don't

      Don't be so hard on zdnet. After all this is just an aggregation of another source. I mean its not like anyone actually write real articles here. Just wildly speculative blog posts and regurgitation of other people's research.
  • PC Revolution All Over Again

    If you remember, the original infiltration of PCs into business was done by the users against the wishes of the "Data Processing" department back then. It was only after it became clear that they fulfilled a genuine need, were formal procedures grudgingly insti‌tuted to integrate them into the companies' operations.

    We see the same pattern repeating itself. As before, the new machines are seen as "toys", incapable of "serious" work. As before, it doesn't stop them being fantastically popular among the users. And as before, it will take a new generation of computing professionals to understand how best to integrate them into company-wide systems, because the older IT incu‌mbents still have too much of the PC mindset, just as their predecessors had too much of the mini/mainframe mindset.
  • PaaS may come in handy.

    I believe BYOA is to come for sure as more and more employees are empowered by various PaaS technologies to build and bring their own apps to the corporate. And as long as the platform is secure, standard-based and able to meet certain compliance, IT should be happy about it. This article provides some good information on the topic: