Employees may be expected to supply their own computers

Employers will soon start encouraging their staff to buy themselves a PC, according to a new report.

The firm claims the shift towards employee-owned technology will mirror changes in the 1970s when businesses moved from maintaining fleets of company cars to encouraging employees to buy and maintain their own vehicles.

With consumer technology such as instant messaging and Skype internet phone software being increasingly used in the workplace, analyst firm Gartner believes it is only a matter of time before most employees will be buying their own technology.

“We believe a similar model [to the company car scenario] can play in user computer devices,” the report said. “Gartner has two large enterprise clients running pilots in which they apply the automobile experience to computers.”

By 2008, 10% of companies will require employee-purchased laptops, the report predicts.

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