Mar 6, 2023

What Should Business Owners Consider in 2023 To Help Manage BYOD Policies?

Bring-your-own-device (BYOD) policies have been common practice for more than a decade when they started to be thought of as a cheaper choice for businesses around 12 years ago. However, in more recent times, the popularity of BYOD has declined as businesses focus more on safeguarding their mobile endpoints and ensuring the well-being of staff, and there is much debate over whether BYOD is still a good choice for businesses in 2023.

What Is BYOD?

BYOD is the initiative of employees to use personal devices like laptops and mobile phones for work-related tasks. Activities include accessing emails, and connecting to the company network, apps and data. Staff use their own devices rather than company-owned ones that are managed by the IT department.

Businesses usually position it as a staff benefit, giving employees access to their personal emails and contacts even when at work, without the need of using two phones. For companies, it encourages better communication and connection, ensuring work phones are always on, within reach and available.

What Made BYOD Popular?

Corporate America was the first to introduce BYOD in a bid to boost productivity and efficiency in businesses. Initially, it was thought to increase output as a result of greater familiarity with the device – employees would be able to use their phone and laptop more ably because they’d already know them, which would speed up work activities and minimise the need for device training.

BYOD was part of the always-on culture in the corporate world a decade ago, and whilst it offered some benefits to employees it is now considered to have contributed to the so-called quiet quitting phenomenon which sees staff move away from doing any more than is strictly necessary for their job role and instead switching off as soon as they leave the office for the day.

For businesses, there were cost-saving elements with BYOD as it was viewed as a cheaper choice when it comes to communication. However, the downsides are now thought to outweigh the upsides of BYOD.

The Issues With BYOD In The Modern Workplace

Administration Headache

Settling people’s phone bills is complex and tricky with regard to tax when it comes to BYOD policies. It is rarely easy to process device usage bills, whether you opt for providing an allowance or settling the bill.

It’s hard to work out what’s personal use and business use if you choose to settle the bills, and both options come with tax-related issues as any reimbursement or allowance is handled as income and is therefore taxable – something most employees aren’t willing to pay.

Bills aside, using your personal phone for work leads to other concerns such as what the rules are for being compensated for taking business calls when away on holiday or what happens when you’re abroad for work. These matters are a headache for companies to resolve and often cause bad feelings among employees.


Originally, BYOD was seen as having potential money-saving capabilities for business. However, the reality is that it often costs the same or sometimes more than implementing a straightforward managed device solution. While employees might like only having to carry one device around, the majority need a high specification standard on their device which means having to buy the latest model and spending more money, purely for work reasons – and often this results in businesses offering staff allowances for their devices, which is an extra cost on their bottom line.

Business Vulnerability

Introducing personal devices into the business world increases the risk of cyber-attacks, hacks and leaks – and given that security is always a priority for businesses, this is a major downside of BYOD policies. Despite the majority of security systems on devices having sandboxes for business information, these are far from easy to use and are not as effective as a result.

Poor Work/Life Balance

BYOD policies were originally sold as offering a better work/life balance to employees through being able to access personal data during work hours. There was also the added benefit of only needing one device to carry in the workplace.

However, nowadays the fact employees are unable to switch off when at home and enjoy leisure time on social media or browsing online, is a big negative of BYOD. Work messages and calls can come through on an employee’s device at any time, meaning there is no ability to properly take time off from work.


BYOD has limited business use in the modern world – there are some benefits and in certain situations such as for senior management or for contractors, it can be helpful to adopt this policy. However, incorporating this policy for the whole business can lead to employee resentment, administration headaches, and a weakened security set-up – and when you factor in the unlikeliness of saving any money, BYOD seems outdated in 2023.

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