Bring Your Own Device – Flexible or Unsecure?

Last week saw results released from a YouGov survey that talked to 1,250 SMEs across Europe, US and Australia. The survey found that as many as 47% of UK firm’s employees are already using their own device for office use.

With the increasing importance around bringing your own device (BYOD) in the workplace, we decided to look at the pros and cons of businesses allowing BYOD.

Pros

  1. In some cases employee’s devices are likely to be more advanced than what the office can supply.
  2. Employees can choose their preferred platform: Mac, PC or Android; meaning staff are likely to work better on the chosen device, increasing productivity.
  3. Revenue benefits – as staff can keep on the go as they move between remote working, meetings and travel.
  4. People are increasingly placing greater emphasis on the technology that they use and the flexibility of the workplace over salary. Not only will you have happy and productive staff, but you will also be able to use it to demonstrate staff perks to recruit the best talent.
Cons
  1. Security of data is a big concern for businesses; what if a device is lost or stolen? There needs to be clear guidelines around security and staff need to be fully briefed on how to keep documents secure, without this there is the possibility that your business data might be in jeopardy.
  2. IT – do you have the skills to support multiple device issues? BYOD needs to be weighed against the cost of potentially recruiting multiple staff to be able to deal with multiple device issues.
  3. Who’s responsible for damage, loss or theft? Clear guidelines need to be implemented in your business if you go ahead with a BYOD policy. Staff will need to know what your policy is against theft, loss or damage so the right insurance policies can be obtained to protect both the employee and the employer.

Although there are potential issues around security with devices going to and from the office, the way in which the business world is moving it seems like the obvious choice – especially for small and start-up businesses. However, there needs to be security added to devices and staff educated to save documents and keep passwords secure, in order to overcome this. There is no doubt that the benefits of BYOD outweigh the cons with the ability to be able to work on the go no matter where you are with ease.