Cisco finds "disconnect" between IT and workers

Many shun policies in order to use unauthorized devices, social media

There's a disconnect between a company's IT department and its workers, especially as employees are more mobile and use a variety of devices to access data. This is the second set of findings from a survey commissioned by Cisco to determine challenges enterprises face as their workforce becomes more mobile, and use more consumer-centric technologies - like social media - to accomplish their tasks.

The first part of the study, which queried 2,600 people from 13 countries, found that 60% of them believe they don't have to be in the office to be productive.

This one found that workers and the IT departments of their companies are not on the same page. Forty-one percent of the employees surveyed admit they break IT usage and security policies in order to meet their networking needs at work. And not all of their worktime networking needs are work-related...

The study also found that over two-thirds of the employee respondents say IT policies have to be altered to support the way people work today, such as finding an acceptable medium between device usage, social media, mobility and work flexibility. 

One in four employees are unaware that IT policies even exist in their workplace, the Cisco study found. And another 23% said there are no policies for acceptable device usage. 

And then there are those that break IT policy anyway. The 20% that admit they do believe their company won't enforce it. And they break it because they say they need access to the unauthorized applications to get their job done. 

Almost two-thirds of the employees surveyed believe their companies should allow social media use during work hours with work devices. But 41% say they are restricted from using Facebook at their job, and 35% are restricted from using Twitter at work or with work devices. 

About 20% of the respondents say they are restricted from using personal devices like their own laptops or phones at work.

The survey concluded that 66% of employees believe they should be able to connect freely with any device -- personal or company-issued -- and access the applications and information that they need around the clock. Policies are either outdated, ineffective or both, the Cisco study found, requiring a reassessment and redefinition -- and re-enforcement -- of enterprise IT policies.

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