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Will BYOD give rise to the enterprise Genius Bar?

Tom Kaneshige | July 2, 2013
As the invasion of consumer tech changes IT, it makes sense that support for consumer devices would start to reflect the retail experience. Think Apple's Genius Bar. Mike Burgio of Inergex, an IT services firm, talks about why IT leaders need to think about hitting the bar.

There's a connection between the consumer-driven BYOD and the enterprise Genius Bar. By 2016-2017, you're going to see a drastic decrease in the amount of IT assets that people are supplying to their end users. BYOD is going to take off, and IT is going to be pushed by their end users to supply the enterprise Genius Bar or something like it. Who will be the early adopters?
Burgio: It's going to be the people in finance. A lot of changes seem to take place there anyways, such as regulations. Five years ago, finance companies were being told that they had to stick with products like BlackBerry for security reasons. That totally changed. Now the finance industry is starting to have all these different devices. People are usually more mobile in finance, too.

Finance companies are letting employees bring their own devices, and these devices are being utilized more. So they're the ones that'll be shifting to a lot of enterprise Genius Bars. The shift away from the traditional help desk seems like a giant leap. How should CIOs get started?
Burgio: People have to look at what they have at their current service desk.

Are they taking the majority of calls about these types of [consumer] devices? Or are the calls being re-routed somewhere else? If they're already taking these calls on, they will just have to shift the resourcing from, say, 10 people sitting at a service desk to seven people sitting there and three sitting at an enterprise service bar.

It really just depends on the amount of users on these devices, in determining how quickly you're going to have to get up to speed. I also think it's going to expand beyond somebody just sitting at a location to a full service, where people are even getting the attention of someone coming out to visit them. Do CIOs need to re-think their staff?
Burgio: Yes, absolutely. To be honest, CIOs have already started doing that. You can't look for people who are only very good from a technology standpoint. You need people who are also very good from a customer service and personality standpoint.

CIOs are thinking like this more because they don't want to be seen as a burden in the company. They're already a cost burden in most companies; they don't generate any revenue in the IT department. If you put poor customer service on top of that, it makes them look worse.

A lot of CIOs are bringing in people who have the personalities, who are able to speak to people either on the phone or face-to-face in a very likeable way, and also have the ability to solve technical problems.


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