The iPhone at IVK Harvard Case Solution & Analysis


The case “The iPhone at IVK” discusses the situation where the CIO Jim Barton has to make a decision regarding the IT management problem at the company IVK Financial Services. He has been facing quite a number of issues which included the increase in Non-Standard Service Request (NSR) along with this the sales representatives have been using devices without the approval of the security department. Secondly, the sales manager has requested the company IVK to purchase iPhones instead of the notebooks which the company was planning to buy for the employees. The CEO of the company had a positive image of the iPhone and he was quite keen to use it. Whereas Cho, the security in charge has some concerned regarding the use of the iPhone by the company (Richard, 2010).

Problem Statement

The problem at hand for CIO, James Burton is to make a decision to replace the notebook PC’s with the iPhones for all the salesmen at IVK while also converting the company’s customer and the sales applications to the iPhone platform (Richard, 2010).


How would you advise Jim Barton to proceed?

Looking at the situation at hand for Jim Barton, where he has to make a decision of replacing the notebooks with iPhones for all the sales representatives at IVK Financial Services. Being the CIO of the company, Jim Barton has to make a decision that is in favor of the company. Although as the case states, the CEO and all the sales team were quite keen to use iPhones rather than the notebooks, but while selecting the best option, Barton has to look upon all the factors rather than making a haphazard decision. Therefore, before making a decision, Barton should analyze the advantages and disadvantages of implementing iPhones at the company.

Being the CIO for the company IVK, Barton has to make sure that company information and all the files are protected. This has to be the main focus and concern for Barton. It is a fact, if the company adopts a new hardware it will obviously pose new threats for the company and it might make easier for the hackers to access any sensitive data or the financial information. However, before making a decision a complete analysis should be carried which can obviously make the decision making a lot easier for Barton? It is a possibility, that iPhone might prove to be a better option for the company and it might help in securing sensitive data files.

SWOT Analysis

To understand the credibility and all the various attributes of distributing iPhone to the entire sales representative, a SWOT analysis will carried out to make sure that the decision is made on relevant facts and figures regarding the advantages and disadvantages of using iPhone at IVK Financial Services.


By installing iPhone within the sales department it will help IVK sales department to transfer all its sales applications to the iPhone app. The services that will be beneficial for the company by using iPhone will ensure optimal security features and attributes that will be favorable for the company IVK. These features will include the encryption of the data. It will support the virtual private note works (VPN) also. Along with this, it will help all the users to erase all the data from the phone through remote wipes. IPhone will also have wifi facility and the internet transport security that can make easy access to all the data for the sales representatives. Apple iPhone can also be locked down while the individual functions of the phone can be disabled individually as and when required. The option of sandboxing will also keep the unnecessary data to be accessed by the hackers or any unauthorized person. Using iPhone at IVK will be a cheaper option as compared to the usage of notebook, along with this it is easy to use and also a portable device.


The option of distributing iPhone at IVK for the sales representatives will make the IT Department of IVK to have less control over the download history of the users. The users or the sales representatives will be able to access any data without any permission. While using iPhone at IVK, it will increase the IT resources and all the efforts regarding the adhering technical policies that have been installed at IVK will either be cancelled or deferred in some situations. Along with this, iPhone does not allow open source technology which can offer customized applications for the IVK Financial Services, to the security codes also. iPhone will also not allow quality control processes.


The opportunities of using iPhone at IVK will be that will make way for an increased job efficiency that will then lead to a rather more productive sales team which will help in generating higher returns and revenues for the...................

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CIO addresses the decision to replace a netbook with sellers of iPhones, including conversion of the company's sales and customer applications to the iPhone platform "Hide
by Richard L. Nolan, Robert D. Austin Source: Harvard Business School 3 pages. Publication Date: October 26, 2010. Prod. #: 911413-PDF-ENG

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