With the growing popularity of smartphones and tablets, the line between the personal and professional use of mobile devices is starting to get blurry— even more so now, given how most IT services in Tulsa can be outsourced to third-party providers. Small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) don’t have to invest in tools and equipment because providers use their own infrastructure and employees use their own devices.
This policy of letting employees use their personal gadgets for business purposes is called Bring Your Own Device (BYOD). Before BYOD became widespread, employees would receive company-issued devices which had to be returned upon their resignation or retirement. Thus, the burden of buying and maintaining the devices fell on the company. It wasn’t much of a problem for big businesses budget-wise, but for SMBs, it put a strain on their finances.
How is BYOD Good?
Now that most employees have their own smartphones and tablets, it makes sense to allow them to use their own devices for business use. After all, it’s a win-win situation for both the company and its employees. Companies don’t have to allocate part of their budget to buying devices when employees buy their own. They also don’t have to spend resources on training employees on how to use a device. As for employees, they don’t have to carry several gadgets at once, which can be a challenge for those who commute. They’re more productive as well because they’re using devices they’re already familiar with. There’s no more learning curve to overcome when they already know how to use their devices in the first place.
How is BYOD Bad?
BYOD is a policy, and like all other policies, it works well only if it’s properly implemented. If you want to successfully practice BYOD in your SMB, you need to consider the following:
Are all devices allowed or should they meet certain specifications?
- Your policy should clearly list these specifications so that employees won’t waste their money on a device they can’t also use for work. If the required devices are on the higher end (and more expensive), you should be prepared to share the cost with your employees.
What happens to the company data in a lost device?
- Your company should be able to remotely delete work data from all devices without requiring input from employees, and without affecting their personal stuff. Many providers of IT services in Tulsa have a remote-wipe option for this scenario.
How is your employee’s privacy protected?
- You should have written documentation on the extent of access your company has on employees’ devices. It’s important for employees to understand and agree with it. Not everyone has the same attitude toward privacy. For example, some people are fine with location tracking while some are not.
Implementing the BYOD policy does raise its challenges that SMBs may not be prepared to handle. But this doesn’t mean you should abandon BYOD altogether, not when the pros outweigh the cons. The best course of action is to allow us at JMARK Business Solutions to handle BYOD management and other processes for your SMB. Established in 1988, we are one of the most experienced providers of IT services in Tulsa. Contact us to learn more about what we can do for you.