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BYOD FAQs: The Basics of BYOD, Explained

bring your own device byod

BYOD is trending in the corporate world for its ability to be a win-win situation for employees and employers alike. But is BYOD right for your organisation? And do you know enough to confidently adopt BYOD and roll it out to your team?


Q1. What Does BYOD Stand For? 

BYOD stands for Bring Your Own Device — a concept where employees can use personally owned devices to carry out company-related tasks. In a non-corporate scenario, BYOD can also be introduced into educational settings, encouraging students to use personal equipment for digital learning.


Q2. What Are the Advantages of BYOD? 

BYOD helps tip companies over the edge towards their digital transformation goals, getting them one step closer to cloud transformation

While doing this, BYOD also saves organisations on operational costs, requiring fewer assets to make flexible working feasible. It’s been found that, on average, organisations with a BYOD policy save $350 per year, per employee from doing so. 

There may also be some productivity benefits to embracing BYOD as teams conveniently get to work on operating systems they trust and use software they feel familiar with. While portable devices spike productivity by 34%, over half of workers believe the tech they use in their personal life is more effective than the tech they use at work. So, whether productivity is proven or a placebo, BYOD has a range of benefits across the board.


Q3: What Are the Disadvantages of BYOD? 

BYOD proposes fewer operating costs and more employee output, but it doesn’t come without any challenges. Perhaps the greatest disadvantage of BYOD is the lack of visibility and control organisations have over their operations, increasing data sharing and storage risks. 

With more flexibility comes less uniformity, so organisations adopting BYOD need to work hard to set appropriate boundaries and provide clear instructions for their employees to follow. Managers will also need to know how BYOD could contribute to siloed working. Even if it makes for a happier, more engaged individual, there’s an obstacle to overcome in using different programs and software to produce and send work.


Q4. Why Are More Organisations Engaging in BYOD? 

Bring your own device saw a significant increase following the rise in flexible working during the coronavirus pandemic

Realising that traditional office assets might be difficult to access and challenging to continually onboard new employees, organisations and other institutions have become more and more aligned with the idea of BYOD. This is especially the case when seeing its other cost-saving and morale-boosting benefits. 

Now, firms view BYOD as yet another way to empower employees in the digital workspace, giving them the freedom to choose where they work and how they work.


Q5: Does BYOD Relate to Zero Trust? 

BYOD sounds like it should relate to zero trust — a type of architecture that promotes granting the lowest possible level of access to complete tasks in a network. However, migrating to BYOD doesn’t automatically mean you align with zero trust or that zero trust is suitable for your organisation. 

You’ll need to read more about the topic of zero trust and check if your environment is set up correctly for that type of network.


Q6. What Is a BYOD Policy? 

BYOD policy is as it sounds: A policy to govern the use of personally owned devices. Like any other organisational policy, BYOD policy will be given to employees in writing and cover every vital aspect of BYOD for teams to refer to. It may also help answer any questions insurers may have around the level of coverage needed in a new BYOD landscape.


Q7. Do I Need a BYOD Policy?

Every organisation that backs BYOD as a concept should create a BYOD policy. Although BYOD promotes flexibility, it’s not flexible in itself, requiring strict regulations about how personally owned devices are deployed for traditional organisational work. 

Think about any other integral policy or procedure such as workplace conduct or disciplinaries and treat BYOD the same, as a concept employees should fully understand and adhere to.


Q8. What Should Be Included in My BYOD Policy? 

BYOD policy should be comprehensive, covering everything an employee or another stakeholder might ask regarding using personally owned devices. From clarifying which device types are suitable to walking through a step by step of storing and sharing data on such devices, BYOD policy will be extensive, even offering guidance on how an organisation might step in when BYOD fails. 

Using a BYOD policy template will help you cover all bases, not forgetting about topics such as reimbursement and final things to include, such as disclaimers.


Q9: How Can I Optimise My BYOD Policy? 

Policy should be continually revised as and when your use of BYOD expands or changes. At the very least, organisations should consider reviewing BYOD policy annually or whenever a big change occurs (your bandwidth needs can’t be accommodated in your current network etc). 

As BYOD evolves, there will be plenty of opportunities to optimise this, looking at new applications to use or new ways to wipe data remotely.


Look at BYOD As Part of a Wider Risk Compliance Audit

Bring your own device might come about as your organisation develops new needs, but as we’ve discussed, it can cause some compliance issues and raise security concerns. However, in a time where flexible work and cloud transformation are commonplace, there are many other areas you’ll want to keep an expert eye on. 

Look at BYOD, your network and your use of cloud applications to see if you’re doing everything correctly — whether your team is using personally owned devices yet, or not. 

Discover more about managing your cloud transformation in this blog. From the laws and regulations you need to adhere to the prospect of conducting an internal audit, you’ll better understand how to mitigate BYOD's only fatal flaw and make sure it fits seamlessly with all other major IT changes. 

Find out more about compliance risks and solutions to manage and protect your data by clicking the banner below.

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