From Users to Choosers: the Change in Employee Technology Expectations
This research looks at the motivation for using non-sanctioned technologies within a business context; that is, using Information Technology (IT) systems other than those provided (or approved) by the IT department. In this research, the non-sanctioned IT systems of primary interest are the internet based applications, but also includes personally owned hardware devices such as laptops, tablets and smartphones. This qualitative study used the key informant approach to gain an understanding of the subject using a semi-structured interview format. The results show that employees in knowledge based roles are choosing their own technology tools when they believe that they give them better functionality or flexibility over those offered and approved by the traditional IT department. Graduates and other millennial employees are found to be using non-sanctioned systems more frequently than older workers; millennials are also far more likely to use whatever application or device they want, regardless of the source or what corporate IT policies stated. The use of these non-sanctioned technologies should be a source concern to IT management because many of these can circumvent the organisations security and data management governance policies, giving the potential for data loss or unwanted exposure, regulatory compliance failure or have undesirable legal implications. The results also suggest that IT departments do not have the resources to keep up with the rate of change in technology. At the same time, the users of their services are able to obtain technology solutions from a range of other sources. This may mean a change in the role of the IT department as it loses its position as the technology gatekeeper.