The modern workplace looks very different than it did a decade ago. At the time, employees reported to their physical workplaces, performed their jobs using desktops assigned by the company, and followed established IT policies.
Today’s workplaces can exist anywhere employees want them to, and the variety of tools involved include tablets, smartphones, and other personal endpoints that provide innovative end-user computing solutions and an optimal user experience.
Bring your own device (BYOD) is a phenomenon that is here to stay. There are numerous BYOD business benefits, including cost savings and convenience. Businesses can also achieve enhanced flexibility, mobility, and productivity by embracing BYOD.
However, despite these benefits, there is a valid concern about security issues associated with BYOD implementation in organizations. This article delves into the numerous benefits that companies can derive by implementing BYOD, as well as how to address potential security risks.
BYOD is an established trend in companies where employees use their personal devices to connect to enterprise networks and access work-related resources and potentially confidential data. These devices may include personal computers (PCs), tablets, smartphones, or USB drives. Other company device policies include CYOD, COPE, and COBO.
BYOD has become increasingly popular in recent years, especially as more and more companies support a remote workforce, allowing their employees to access applications and files from home or on the go. According to Global Industry Analysts, the BYOD and enterprise mobility market size will be worth US$ 157.3 billion by 2026.
However, while some organizations can permit their employees to leverage BYOD, others may consider it a form of “shadow IT,” which essentially refers to any IT the company does not sanction.
Advantages of BYOD for Businesses
There are plenty of benefits businesses can derive from BYOD. Let’s take a look at some of them.
1. Reduced operating costs
Businesses that implement BYOD programs in their workplaces don’t have to buy new devices for each employee or new carrier plans associated with those endpoints. Each employee can use the endpoints they own for work-related activities. Some organizations can decide to provide their employees with a stipend that covers part or all of their phone bills.
Others may offer reimbursement that is specific to the employee and the cost of endpoint ownership in their geographical locations. For organizations that are looking to provide a mobility program or just getting started, BYOD’s low price tag is a big plus.
2. Enhanced flexibility
Allowing employees to leverage their preferred devices enables them to work from anywhere without requiring corporate-owned devices to access enterprise resources. This flexibility is an essential aspect of job satisfaction and positive motivation. It’s also one of the main incentives companies can use to increase staff loyalty, morale, and employee engagement.
3. Greater mobility
A BYOD culture makes it possible for employees to be “always on.” This is because they can access the organization’s applications and files via the endpoints they travel with. Obviously, you do not want to burn them out with extreme expectations outside of working hours.
However, you can expect enhanced responsiveness and engagement since employees can easily answer emails and complete tasks outside of their physical offices or when away from their work computers.
Familiarity is perhaps one of the most significant benefits of a BYOD program. Allowing employees to use the device they are familiar with enables them to tackle work-related tasks with increased ease and efficiency. Employees also undertake work-related tasks promptly because there is no wasted time getting comfortable with the device.
5. Improved productivity
A BYOD culture cultivates a sense of satisfied employees, who are more likely to work productively. Allowing employees to use familiar devices also means they don’t get slowed down by steep learning curves associated with corporate-owned devices or adapting to new equipment.
Is BYOD Good for Business?
BYOD culture was already an increasingly popular strategy for businesses even before the coronavirus pandemic. For example, a study conducted by Cisco in 2012 showed that 95% of organizations allowed employee-owned devices in some capacity.
The shift to more hybrid working environments in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, the proliferation of mobile devices, and the developments in bring-your-own-network (BYON) have laid the groundwork for the BYOD trend to gain even more traction.
When done correctly, the business benefits of BYOD can be plentiful, allowing organizations to achieve success in their digital transformation goals during critical times. However, without a proper device management framework, a BYOD program can increase security risks, which, if not handled well, can leave corporate resources vulnerable to a growing number of cyber threats.
Streamline Device Management with JumpCloud
As your company’s mobility framework embraces the future of BYOD, it’s essential to have a strategy that helps you to streamline the management of heterogeneous devices and operating systems (OSs).
The JumpCloud Directory Platform is an inclusive cloud-based identity, access, and device management platform that IT teams can leverage to unify all the identities, endpoints, networks, and resources from a single browser-based console.
It has an inbuilt mobile device management (MDM) component that IT teams can use to manage everything from configuring BYOD security settings to discovering intelligent insights about the various endpoints, whether company- or employee-owned.
JumpCloud also enables a Zero-Trust security approach and has integrated multi-factor authentication (MFA) and conditional access policies that organizations can leverage to improve their overall security posture and strengthen BYOD policies.