The Good and Bad of BYOD, and Why You Need a Policy
BYOD, or Bring Your Own Device, is common in small- to medium-sized organization like remodeling companies. Your employees use their own phones, tablets, and sometimes laptops in their business operations.
A CBS MoneyWatch survey says more than 67% of workers use one or more of their own devices at work, and that doesn’t seem to be going away soon.
There are advantages — the company doesn’t have to provide these devices, saving you money. Your team can respond to situations as they crop up during the day, especially when on a job-site or in transit.
They’re probably using tools they’re familiar with. It can be tough to pry an iPhone out of a dedicated user’s hand and have them happy to use an Android, for example. Trying to get a designer who’s worked on a Mac forever comfortable on a PC may take time you don’t have.
There’s no learning curve with familiar operating systems, and people are happy to use the devices they already chose. If their tech is current and able to do what needs to be done, it’s sometimes best to just let them use what they know.
Security of files and information is harder to ensure with BYOD. Using administrator-controlled cloud-based data storage systems like the Google suite, Dropbox, CoConstruct, and BuilderTrend, for example, add a layer of security. If an employee leaves the company, simply deleting or deactivating the account keeps your business information from walking into a competitor’s business.
Be careful with those accounts, though. With general apps like Google and Dropbox, opt for the professional or business programs, that allow the administrator to add or limit permissions for editing or deleting documents or data. With no limits on permissions, a careless or disgruntled former employee could wipe out years of business information.
Have a Policy in Place
You should have a mobile device policy in your employee manual — whether you supply the devices or your workers are using their own. It should address personal business on company time, passwords for security, and inappropriate use. That could involve posting something client-related on Facebook, say, or offensive posts on social media.
In this hyper-connected world, your employees are always a reflection on you. Take some time to ensure it’s a good one.