More and more companies are transitioning toward the bring your own device (BYOD) trend. On course to hit nearly $367 billion by 2022, the BYOD market offers many benefits, especially in terms of small business IT . However, for this concept to work and to ensure security, a policy needs to be developed.
The Benefits of a BYOD Policy
The BYOD concept encompasses more than the smartphones employees carry around with them wherever they go. This concept means employees work on their own devices.
The benefits of implementing such a policy are vast, with one of the most obvious benefits being the direct cost savings.
Aside from enhanced flexibility and motivation for team members, this policy has also been shown to support higher rates of productivity. According to Dell, over 60% of Gen Y and 50% of workers age 30+ believe the tech tools they use in their personal lives are more productive than those in their work-life . Using portable devices also plays a role, saving employees almost an hour per day while increasing productivity by 34%.
The perks are clear, but before you jump in, there are some important considerations for you to make.
What to Consider Before Creating Your BYOD Policy
On the surface, a BYOD work environment seems like a win-win concept for both employees and employers — and in many ways, it is.
With that being said, if you do not take the necessary precautions, you could do more harm than good.
Security is one such area that requires careful consideration. Whether you’re concerned about cyberattacks or permitting access to company resources from personal devices, you need to make security a top priority. The key here is to source solutions that will significantly mitigate these risks, ensuring secure business operations. You need to think through all possible threats, including the possibility that a personal device with sensitive information will be lost or stolen.
As suggested in a Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) BYOD policy template, you can require employees to have “remote-wipe” software installed on their personal devices by the IT department before they are used in the workplace . If those devices were to be misplaced or stolen, your company could then erase files remotely.
Other areas to consider include:
- Device protocols, ranging from anti-virus software to password-protected applications
- Restrictions on authorized use, including excessive personal calls, video recordings, etc.
- Privacy and company access based on what is governed by law
- Violation and termination policies
Take These Steps to Create a Successful, Secure BYOD Policy
Many small and medium-sized businesses are nervous to make the shift toward a BYOD workplace.
Being cautious and strategic is good, but there is no need to fear this trend. If, of course, a policy is well-planned and well-executed, covering areas such as security, liability, efficiency, and the employee experience.
1. Assess the Pros and Cons
Is a BYOD policy right for your company?
You need to weigh the pros and cons of this concept based on your business model and risk level. To do so, you’ll want to develop BYOD goals and objectives, keeping security and governance in mind.
2. Discuss Your Pending BYOD Policy Internally
Whether you seek advice from your legal team, HR department, finance department, or all of the above, it’s important to discuss:
- Acceptable use policy and permitted devices
- Labor laws for exempt and non-exempt employees
- Privacy concerns
- Employee awareness and perception of security
3. Seek Assistance for Areas Related to Security and Compliance
Have you conducted a vulnerability assessment to better understand your company’s risks?
When it comes to security and compliance, you must take a proactive approach. If your small business does not have its own IT department or you require comprehensive, end-to-end solutions, it’s recommended that you outsource this step. An external IT partner can help you develop a BYOD policy that meets your company’s unique needs and goals — all while addressing any gaps in your current IT strategy.
Once you build a strategy, devise a suitable policy, establish processes, and acquire resources, it’s time to put it all together.
How Artemis IT Can Help
Artemis IT is your one-stop shop for all things IT. Serving clients since 1995, Artemis offers a wide range of solutions, ranging from cybersecurity and compliance to mobility, data management, disaster recovery, and much more.
By partnering with Artemis IT, you can streamline technology management and gain greater peace of mind. This will allow you to focus on what matters most — your growing business.
Learn more about how Artemis IT can help your company stay secure, remain competitive, and thrive!
Request a consultation with our team today.
 Anna Johansson. Growth of BYOD proves it’s no longer an optional strategy. Retrieved from https://betanews.com/2017/05/12/growth-of-byod-proves-its-no-longer-an-optional-strategy/
 Earl Bless. Consumerization: What is in Store for IT? Retrieved from https://i.dell.com/sites/content/business/solutions/whitepapers/it/Documents/intel-imr-consumerization-wp_it.pdf
. Melanie Turek. Employees Say Smartphones Boost Productivity by 34 Percent: Frost & Sullivan Research. Retrieved from https://insights.samsung.com/2016/08/03/employees-say-smartphones-boost-productivity-by-34-percent-frost-sullivan-research/
 SHRM. Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) Policy. Retrieved from https://www.shrm.org/resourcesandtools/tools-and-samples/policies/pages/bringyourowndevicepolicy.aspx