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BYOD: Should We Provide Company Phones for Employees?

Did you know that 44 percent of companies have already implemented Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) programs?

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Did you know that 44 percent of companies have already implemented Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) programs? Are you wondering if you should buy into the trend or keep providing a company phone? Below is a list of the pros and cons of buying a phone for an employee vs. letting them pay for their own device:

 

Pro’s of Providing Company Phones

 

  • Own the Phone Number

Transferring an office or department to a new number can be quite the headache for a company, especially if the leaving employee is taking the number with them. You can even lose business if done improperly. But if you buy your employees a phone, you also own the phone number. That means that you don’t have to change the phone number if one employee leaves and you hire another to take their place. This can save a lot in terms of cost and lost productivity for both the employee and the company during a time of transition.

  • Control of Communication Tools and Expectations

 If you aren’t pitching in for your employee’s phone, you can’t demand that they get a phone with a PowerPoint app or email capabilities. When you provide them with a phone, however, you can give them everything they’ll need to meet your expectations about communication. So if you think they’ll need access to email and file sharing while on a business flight or client lunch, you probably want to consider providing them a phone.

  • Reduced Company Liability

Another aspect of control you might not have thought about with company devices is liability. Depending on your industry, you may handle extremely sensitive client information. Whatever information you take for a client, you have a legal obligation to keep that information safe. When you own the phone, you can be sure that it has the proper passwords and encryptions.

If you let your employee use their own phone, you run the risk of them deciding not to use password protection or accidentally sending private information to one of their personal contacts. Regardless, your company can still be held responsible for the information leak. Data breaches of this nature can easily result in a court case. If you end up getting sued, you want to be able to say that you did everything in your power to keep the client’s information secure. That may be easier to do if you own the device.

 

Con’s of Providing Company Phones:

 

  • Higher Overhead Costs

While you do have better control and easier transitions with a company phone, you pay for these perks in terms of an expensive phone plan. The lower cost of BYOD has always been one of its main draws as it eliminates the need to buy a phone and pay for its line and data usage. Depending on the employee and on your plan, you can spend more than $1,000 per year per employee by paying for their phone.

 In contrast, here’s a look at the pro’s and con’s of BYOD programs.

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