Even though most of us haven’t been able to take our personal hardware anywhere over the last year, it hasn’t stopped many of us from purchasing new devices like Chromebooks, smartphones and laptops. Chromebook sales have been “through the roof”, according to Canalys research, as organisations have looked for cheap solutions in order to provide equipment to remote workers.
Once we know where we’ll be working and the so-called “new normal” is fully implemented, these new devices might come with us to work through a Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) scheme. In the years leading up to the pandemic, it was a growing trend where employees were encouraged to use their personal devices in the workplace.
Part of the BYOD’s popularity is down to the consumerisation of IT with smartphones, laptops, and tablets appealing strongly with the general public. Many people choose the fastest laptop or latest model of smartphone and generally use them to check emails or talk to co-workers and employers.
Moreover, this has coincided with a sharp rise in the use of apps and SaaS tools, many of which can be easily downloaded and installed on personal devices. The line between work and our personal lives is often blurred when apps like Google Workspace, Slack and Microsoft Office are installed on a personal smartphone or device, even when they may already be on a laptop provided by an employer.
The benefits of BYOD
The most significant benefits of BYOD include lower IT costs and increased productivity.
Employees who can select their own device for work, whether it’s a computer, tablet or smartphone, can be more productive as they are more motivated.
IT departments don’t need to stump up the cash for new equipment or software licenses and employees are more likely to look after their equipment if it’s their personal device too, so maintenance and repair costs will be lower.
Additionally, technology chosen by employees is likely to be more up to date than IT departments can offer everyone, which means they’ll often feature faster processors, more advanced security such as fingerprint readers and can be used alongside the latest iterations of apps and software to ensure workers have the resources they need at all times.