The Pros and Cons of a Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) Policy

Many companies are starting to adopt a bring-your-own-device (BYOD) policy, which allows each employee to bring their personal iPhone, laptop, and other electronic devices to work. While there are many advantages to this policy, it also comes with a fair number of drawbacks. It’s important to evaluate the method in the context of the goals you have for your company in order to determine whether it would be helpful or harmful to your employees. Before you make a decision, you need to understand what to expect if you choose to let your workers bring in their personal electronics. Here are some of the key pros and cons of implementing a BYOD policy.

Pro: Saves You Money

A major benefit of the BYOD policy is that it saves you a lot of money. By allowing your employees to bring their own devices to the office, you don’t have to purchase equipment for each person. This can significantly reduce the costs associated with providing the necessary technology for all of your employees. Some of the technological costs you might have to take into account without a BYOD policy include:

  • PCs
  • Phones
  • Storage
  • Software
  • Firewalls

BYOD policies can save you the stress of dealing with those costs. Moreover, giving everyone the freedom of bringing their own electronics doesn’t only make your job easier. Your employees will likely benefit from the convenience of using their everyday iPhone and laptop rather than the company-supplied equipment. 

Pro: Allows More Freedom for Employees

By implementing a BYOD policy, you also provide your employees with more freedom.  Most people would prefer to do work on the gadgets that they’re comfortable with given the choice. Additionally, letting each person decide which devices to bring ensures that all of your workers are satisfied with their chosen technology. In any given workplace, employees probably have numerous preferences when it comes to the types of technology that they utilize. While some people may prefer to work on an Android phone, there are others who might opt for an iPhone. A BYOD policy also means that everyone already understands how to use their chosen devices, which can significantly increase productivity and eliminate the need for electronic training.

Con: Potential Privacy Issues

The freedom and convenience of a BYOD policy may seem attractive until you come to terms with privacy issues. If your employees have highly valuable information stored on their personal laptops, this confidential data may become leaked once the workers leave the office. If you’re thinking about adopting a BYOD policy, one of the first things you should ask yourself is how you will keep your company’s private data secure. The confidentiality of your data may also become a problem if one of your employees leaves the company. In this case, eliminating all private information from the worker’s personal device can be a challenge, as his or her personal information might be erased along with the company data.

Con: IT Difficulties

The challenges associated with allowing employees to use their own devices can also affect IT support. Some workers may have trouble installing the latest iPhone software while others may run into problems when updating their laptops. In addition, certain features such as custom software may not function effectively on everyone’s devices if they are not all the same. The inconsistency can therefore create confusion in the IT department and make everyone’s job more difficult. When each person’s technology is equal, it creates a smoother experience for IT workers as well as for all of your employees.

A BYOD policy can either help your company thrive or slow it down in various ways. Before you decide whether to let your employees bring in an iPhone or laptop, weigh the pros and cons of allowing personal electronics and choose the option that is best for you and your employees.