To BYOD or not to BYOD…

To BYOD or not to BYOD…

150 150 Ally Munarriz

Cost savings, mobile working and better technology…BYOD is becoming inevitable. 

In an age where we have come to expect the same levels of technology and convenience at work as we do in our personal lives, more and more organisations are considering BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) for their employees.

Along with our demands for the best possible tech, research in 2017 by Accountancy Age found that 89% of employees are motivated more by flexible working than financial incentives. Gone are the days of being tied to a desk in your company’s office from a very strict 9am to 5.30 or 6pm. We have started to realise that work isn’t a place but something we do and it can often be achieved as effectively, if not more effectively in a place and time that suits us, our routine and our families. Not only that, we’d rather be given the opportunity of working from home or at times that work for us, than receive a pay rise in some cases.

It’s been found that just by having access to work on our mobile phones we can become 34% more productive as we’ll often add an extra 58 minutes to our working day, by answering urgent emails, being available for calls, planning our days better or using our commute to catch up on outstanding tasks.

So by giving people the right tools and allowing flexibility we can assist with work-life balance, which improves employee happiness and wellbeing; in the longterm this reduces staff attrition and saves the business money.

From an IT point of view, whether you run the communications and mobility for a small organisation, an enterprise or a government department, you will have or will be looking to embrace smart and flexible working. In the past many IT Managers and CTOs were resistant to BYOD. However, the benefits can often far outweigh the risks if well planned and executed:

Risks associated with BYOD

  • Employees often use their own devices ‘unofficially’ so you have no control of what they are accessing
  • If employees are not ‘tech savvy’ they may buy new devices that they are unfamiliar with and require extra IT support
  • Customer data may be accessed on a work device which could introduce GDPR issues if used in public places or the device is lost or stolen
  • Some employees may end up working too much which can have a negative effect on happiness and performance
  • Human error can cause security breaches

The benefits

  • Significant reductions in hardware costs – In the US BYOD accounts for an average saving of $350 per employee, per year
  • Staff have superior devices, often with unlimited minutes/data at their own cost
  • The employee pays for replacements, repairs and upgrades
  • Productivity is increased as users are more comfortable with their own device
  • BYOD is scalable as an organisation grows or mergers or acquisitions take place
  • More people can become mobile, without the organisation investing in extra devices

How to make BYOD work for you

  • Implement a strict policy to protect the organisation, its employees and their contacts
  • Ensure that access to the company network on personal devices is secure and that all have strong passwords/PINs
  • Require a certain level of ‘device competence’ or refuse support
  • Use technology to provide a work number on personal devices so the company owns and manages the number
  • Use a Mobile Application Management or Mobile Device Management service to manage and secure access to work applications
  • Ensure that software is kept up to date by pushing out reminders by text/email

If you are looking for advice on how BYOD can work for your organisation contactus@thumbtel.com and we can tell you more about Another Number for Teams, an easy to deploy and cost effective way of issuing work numbers to all employees on their chosen device. If you’re ready to give it a try, start a free trial for you and your team here.

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