Bring your own device (BYOD)—where teachers, staff and students use their own devices (usually a smartphone or tablet) on campus—has been happening for years. With BYOD already in place, you may have seen benefits such as:
- Reduced capital expenditures on buying, maintaining and upgrading hardware
- Happier employees, staff & students who want freedom of choice to work on their favorite devices
Hopefully, you’re also addressing some of BYOD’s challenges, including less control over data, and greater risks from the loss or theft of devices.
Restrict BYOD to Smartphones
No education provider can afford to lose the trust of its stakeholders because of network and data breaches or device theft. Consider the following points to balance user choice and flexibility, with optimal security and efficiency:
- For employees and teaching staff, restrict BYOD to user-owned smartphones
- For students, consider provisioning with devices built specifically for education, with enhanced collaboration features and toughened for classroom use
- Embrace an enterprise mobility management platform such as MobileIron to simplify management of endpoint devices, or a mobile device management (MDM) solution like Microsoft InTune.
- Restrict access only to specific IT-approved applications behind the firewall (in the office or campus) to limit malware risk.
Offer a Choice of Devices Issued by IT
Beyond smartphones, all end user devices could be issued and managed by IT under a program where you offer employees or teaching staff a choice of devices. In this way, not only do users get choice, but your organization still benefits from the enhanced security features and common productivity standards found in business-grade devices like ThinkPad and ThinkCentre.
- Most education institutions may not be thought of as commercial enterprises, but procuring business-grade devices for support and admin teams will give them access to better technical support services, security features and connectivity options. For example, ensure that all users can connect efficiently to displays and projectors because devices have the right connection ports. Or benefit from prioritized technical support and on-site servicing available with our business-grade PCs.
- For students and teachers, provision with devices built specifically for education use. These have enhanced collaboration features and are toughened for classroom use. For example, laptops with keys that are mechanically anchored so they can't be removed. Convertibles that promote interactive learning with touchscreens, multiple cameras and digital pens. Lenovo has a range of education devices suitable for any budget, both for Windows and Chrome operating systems.