The last few decades have seen a trend towards increased flexibility in the workplace. The 9-to-5 routine is gone, with employees setting their own hours – starting later or working longer hours fewer days of the week. The internet allows employees to work from home, using their own desktop computer. Now smartphones and tablets allow employees to work from anywhere, using their own devices.
Pros of BYOD
Employees love the freedom that comes from this flexibility, plus the ability to use their personal devices that they've tailored to meet their own personal likes and dislikes. For employers, this boost in employee morale isn't the only benefit. They gain from having employees able to work from anywhere at any time. Plus, they lose the costs of providing employees with equipment and support.
Cons of BYOD
The flexibility that comes with BYOD isn't all cost-free, for either the employee or the employer. Even before smartphones and tablets, cellphones meant the employee could be reached at any time, but often all the employee could do in response would be to promise to look into a problem when they got back to the office. Now the employee is expected to use their smartphone to start working on an issue as soon as they get the message. Plus, employees are using some of the data plan that they're paying for to support that work.
For employers, the use of personal devices increases the risks of a data breach. Employees can use their devices to access company networks using insecure Wi-Fi services. Devices can be lost, along with any sensitive data stored on them. Companies can attempt to reduce the risks through mobile device management software, but this means placing restrictions on employees' use of their own devices, which is often not well accepted. Employers may need to provide support to enable employees to access their work applications from a wide variety of device configurations.
Create a BYOD Policy to Address Issues
Companies should define a BYOD policy that balances employees' desires to work their own way with the company's need to maintain control over its sensitive data. A generous BYOD policy can be a perk that helps companies gain and retain employees. The Armada Group has more than 20 years' experience bringing together employers and top talent. We work with you to understand the job and the skills you need to match you with the right employee. Contact us to get started.