The concept of a bring-your-own-device or BYOD policy is one that’s grown in popularity over recent years. What started as a new concept in how business is done, has become standard practice for many businesses and large corporations.
There are a number of benefits to allowing employees to use their own devices for work, including increased employee satisfaction, and the money that’s saved on trying to ensure devices are always up-to-date. Most people are already going to have a leading edge device that they can bring, so this takes the burden off the employer.
Operating costs fall to employees with a BYOD policy, and it can improve employee engagement both during traditional work hours and outside of these parameters.
While there are plenty of benefits to BYOD, it’s important to have a firm, well-defined policy in place as well. The following are some tips to set a policy within your company.
Define What Devices Can Used For
Depending on the nature of your industry and company, you may not let employees use their own devices for everything, or there may be only certain areas they can use them. One example where BYOD works almost universally is with employee travel and expense management.
When you’re selecting an expense management vendor, keep your BYOD policy in mind and make sure you choose a product that’s going to work well across employee devices.
If there are areas where employees absolutely shouldn’t be using their own devices, make this very clear.
Outline Allowed Devices
A BYOD policy might not mean that every device is going to be included. For example, what operating systems will you allow? iOS, Android or both? Will you only allow for iOS and Android, and nothing else?
How many personal devices can an individual employee use? Make sure employees know they can’t use rooted mobile devices either.
Important to a successful BYOD program is having set standards for security issues like password protection.
Create a protocol for how passwords are to be created, and also require that all employees have screen locks in place on all devices. This is just the minimum amount of standardized security protection you should have in place, and there need to be details as to what happens when non-compliance is an issue.
Have a Plan To Respond to Incidents
Critical to a successful BYOD policy is having an incident-response plan. You need to be prepared for situations that may and often do arise. There should be outlined ways employees should handle reporting any problems, and there should be a detailed plan of action as to what happens once something is reported.
What level of IT support will you provide employees? When you’re on boarding employees how much guidance will new employees receive? When can employees rely on your company help desk and when are they on their own?
Finally, ensure that you create a remote wipe clause when employees leave the company, whether on their own or they’re fired, and also have a plan in place for what happens if an employee’s device is stolen or lost.