How Much Does BYOD Really Save Your Company?
How Much Does BYOD Really Save Your Company?
In an age when employees upgrade devices as often as their employers, many companies as allowing them to work and play on the same device.
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Reducing costs and increasing productivity are the most common reasons that companies implement a Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) policy. Today, 74% of businesses either already use or plan to implement BYOD policies and more than 67% of workers use their own devices at work.
While BYOD is becoming increasingly popular with businesses of all sizes for its potential to save money, some organizations are concerned that hidden costs, such as needing a mobile device management (MDM) plan to ensure security, would offset all the savings. But this isn’t necessarily true. Your company can save money with BYOD. Here’s how.
How BYOD Saves Money
BYOD can reduce expenses in three areas: hardware, telecommunications, and support and training. Companies save an estimated $3,150 per employee per year with BYOD, according to a study released by Cisco's Internet Business Solutions Group. This is based on device costs, data plans, and $1,518 per employee per year in associated time savings.
For companies implementing a BYOD policy, the savings are immediate, as they no longer need to purchase or replace employee mobile devices. This cost, which on average, is well over $950 per device, is now shifted from the company to the employee, delivering savings to the company’s bottom line.
Also, when companies provide mobile devices to workers, they must purchase new devices every few years to stay up-to-date with technology. This repeat expense is also eliminated for the company that implements a BYOD policy, as employees buy new devices whenever they are no longer satisfied with the capabilities of their current phone, tablet, or laptop.
As telecommunications providers reduce restrictions and increase data usage limits, many providers are beginning to offer unlimited data plans, and most employers will no longer pay for data usage on employee devices. With employees footing the bill for the ongoing data plan bill, operating costs for the company are reduced. Data plan savings are estimated at about $734 per year, per user.
Support and Training Savings
The company no longer bears the cost of maintaining, supporting, and repairing smartphones, tablets, or laptops used and owned by employees. Plus, training expenses decrease substantially when employees utilize technologies with which they are already familiar and comfortable.
Business Benefits of BYOD
One of the most marked business benefits that BYOD can give your company, beyond cost savings, is enhanced productivity. For example, BYOD provides an estimated hour per day of extra productivity, or an increase of 17% in productivity, as a result of improved collaboration by mobile employees.
BYOD makes doing business less expensive and also offers other benefits that translate to higher productivity and reduced costs including:
Improved Employee Retention
BYOD makes it possible to offer employees more telecommuting and flex time options, which results in happier employees and less employee turnover. As a result, human resources expenses for new employee onboarding are substantially lower.
Fewer Company Upgrades
As mentioned above, employees upgrade their own devices every 22 months, on average, so your company benefits from access to the latest technology without the effort or resource investment required to update equipment.
BYOD Enables Cloud-Based Agility
Companies with BYOD plans don’t waste money on technology that doesn't get used. Customize and pay for only the services you need through subscription cloud-based services that easily adapt to your changing needs. Subscription costs replace the costs of devices and software licenses, but they are lower than what businesses pay to provide every employee with an up-to-date device.
Key Elements of Your BYOD Policy
To reap all of the benefits and cost savings of BYOD, make sure your policy includes the following elements:
An HTML5-based remote desktop access solution. Using an HTML5-based remote desktop access solution allows highly secure, anytime-anywhere access to employees’ work desktops from any device. There is no software to install or special maintenance needed (meaning huge time savings for IT teams) as it is a browser-based solution that works on any device with internet access.
Set usage parameters. If you implement an HTML5-based remote access solution, there will be no need to determine which device models, operating systems, and apps your company will support on your BYOD plan, since employees will be able to access their work files and apps from any device and browser. However, you should have the option to decide if there are websites or apps that employees will be blocked from accessing during work hours or via the corporate Wi-Fi.
Passwords and automatic locking. Require employees to set passwords on their mobile devices and to enable automatic locking of the device if it is idle for five minutes. If a password is entered incorrectly after five attempts, the device should require assistance from the company's IT department to regain access.
Remote wipe software. Browser-based remote access solution, allow user permissions to be set to block employees from downloading or saving sensitive corporate data on their personal devices. Without such a solution in place, however, you should require all mobile devices to have remote locate-and-wipe software installed in case a device is stolen, or an employee is fired or leaves the company. This allows the IT department to remove all information from the device's memory without having to actually touch the device.
The Bottom Line in BYOD
You're not alone if you decide to implement a BYOD policy. By 2018, employee-owned devices will be used in the workplace twice as often as devices issued by companies, according to research published by Gartner.
With BYOD, your business saves money on the cost of each device, on telecommunications expenses, and on device support and training. These savings extend throughout the life of the device and for as long as an employee stays with your organization. These factors, along with increases in productivity, time savings, and employees satisfaction make implementing BYOD the obvious choice for any business.
Opinions expressed by DZone contributors are their own.