A recent survey finds that companies are not communicating their BYOD policies to employees, even though 68 percent of employees are using their personal devices for work.
Globo, a mobile software products and services company, released survey results that are just one more chapter in the chronicle of BYOD problems in the workplace. The survey found, simply, that IT departments are not making employees aware of BYOD policies.
According to the survey, while more than two-thirds of survey respondents said they use their personal devices for work, only 29 percent reported that their company has a BYOD policy in place. Fourteen percent did not know if their company has a BYOD policy, and 91 percent said they didn't know of any plans to implement such a policy. Furthermore, 42 percent of respondents didn't know if their company's BYOD policy allows the IT department to have full access to their personal devices.
In general, people who use a personal device for work say that they use it first and foremost to check email. The Globo survey found that 62 percent of BYODers used their device for that purpose.
According to a recent survey by Gartner, one-third of all organizations currently have BYOD policies in place for mobile devices, and 70 percent of companies said they either have a BYOD policy in place or will have one within the next 12 months.
Given the evidence, Globo appears justified in its conclusion that there is "a significant lack of communication between companies and their employees with respect to BYOD."
But this failure to communicate should not be taken lightly, considering the risks associated with using personal devices for work. As Gartner pointed out, those risks include data leakage, privacy breaches, and the infiltration of malware into company networks if employees access unsecure sites.
Interestingly, the Globo survey found that 93 percent of employees would not participate in a BYOD program if the company's IT department sought access to personal information stored on the employees' devices, such as emails and contacts. And 69 percent said that they wouldn't break their employers' BYOD policies even if they knew that they wouldn't get caught.
The important thing for companies to keep in mind is that they need to tailor BYOD programs and policies that fit their specific needs. Creating and developing a mobile workforce is a critical competitive advantage or necessity for many organizations.
And, oh yeah, just one more thing. Don't forget to communicate and explain your BYOD policies to the employees.